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The Dolby Vision HDR conundrum

Let's talk about Dolby Vision, the superior HDR format that hardly any devices are supporting. HDR is a trendy feature right now that every device wants to have a label for and represents not only more colors but better colors and brightness in the images displayed on your screen. At the moment there are two formats being used to achieve this, HDR10 and Dolby Vision. But the two formats are quite different. HDR10 is basically a uniform standard that allows a larger range of colors for all the content as a whole and works off of a 10bit color spectrum. Dolby Vision on the other hand allows content creators to adjust each individual frame for much better color accuracy and brightness. Dolby Vision also allows brighter brights and a 12bit color spectrum that is future proof.

All the technical stuff aside, Dolby Vision simply offers a much better implementation of HDR if your TV supports it and if the content creators took the time and care to optimize it.

So Dolby Vision is better, we get it, but who is actually taking the time and patience to use it? Well a lot of creators are, the majority of Netflix's Original content is supporting Dolby Vision, as does most of Amazon's Original content. Also every recent UHD Bluray. As for games it is being used much less, with Mass Effect Andromeda on PC being the only game I have come across.

So the content is there, what devices support Dolby Vision? Here is where it gets frustrating. Hardly anyone is allowing Dolby Vision. Playstation, Xbox, Shield, Roku, Chrome are all shunning Dolby Vision. At this point you will either need to use apps built in to your TV, a standalone UHD Bluray player that has support "be careful, not many do" or a latest generation Apple TV. As for why they are shunning this superior technology? It seems to be a matter of licensing. Which is a shame. Most likely a 5 dollar license is locking us all out of taking full advantage of our TV's.

Is there hope? Maybe. Recently Dolby Atmos was added to the Xbox One and Windows 10 via a standalone license, perhaps something can be worked out in a similar fashion for Dolby Vision support. Or maybe Dolby will eventually ease their licensing fees and we will get it as a free patch. Recently some Standalone Bluray devices have gotten a free patch to Dolby Vision which has me feeling hopeful.

What can we do? All we can do is keep complaining to the manufacturers of our devices that we want this technology supported. If enough of us make it known this is a technology we demand, the more pressure it puts on all parties to support it. Especially if you own a TV that supports Dolby Vision, you should make your voice heard as it really is a superior picture that you should be experiencing.

A final note, HDR10+ is coming which will be open source with a free licensing and allows frame by frame implementation similar to Dolby Vision. And maybe it is the long term answer. It is still 10bit and has lesser brightness scale, so less color range but there aren't really any screen that have 12bit at this stage anyhow. My biggest worry is that it being late to the party we are a long ways from content taking advantage of it and TV's that support it so I would still push for Dolby Vision support in the short term.

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Neonridr1305d ago

yeah my LG OLED 4K (E6) supports Dolby Vision. Watched all of Stranger Things with it. Shame more doesn't support it at the moment. But I will still take the standard HDR for now.

maybelovehate1305d ago

Me too. Kind of crazy how much better it looked in Dolby Vision. HDR10 seems to make the picture darker overall to achieve that higher contrast in the light areas. Right now I am using my TV apps for Netflix and Amazon but I am especially frustrated that the Xbox One X doesn't support Dolby Vision for Bluray. I had to go buy a standalone UHD Bluray drive just so I can see my Bluray discs in the best format for my TV. Wish they would just let us pay the licensing fee. Really frustrating.

fr0sty1302d ago

Dolby is known for charging ridiculously high licensing fees.

2pacalypsenow1305d ago (Edited 1305d ago )

My C7 has Dolby vision, but very few content is using it ATM, there's too many HDR formats in the market. We need a standard.

maybelovehate1305d ago (Edited 1305d ago )

True, Dolby Vision really should be the standard since it is already offers much more for creators and viewers alike, while also being future proof. Shame it is being buried by Microsoft and Sony to save a few bucks.

Malphite1304d ago

Yeah I've read about that. Temporary image retention is supposed to still happen though with larger logos or HUDs being displayed for an extended time. And permanent burn in has been shown to be possible under very extreme conditions with the B6 which has the pixel shift too ( I'm just curious wether someone has experienced some negative effects with normal use already. I do realise that the C7 is still a new TV and no one knows wether those effects will manifest themselves over a couple of years time though.

2pacalypsenow1304d ago

I've had my C7 for over 6 months, It's used about 90% of the time on gaming.

I have yet to see any burn in.

Under normal use it should be fine.

Malphite1304d ago

I'm looking to get the C7 soon. Do you notice any image retention and burn in effects?

maybelovehate1304d ago

It has a pixel shift tech built in to prevent those issues, my c7 has had no issues. Beautiful tv and the low input lag in hdr game mode makes it a very compelling gaming tv. Not to mention it is gorgeous lol

Outside_ofthe_Box1301d ago

What if your tv doesn't support/have dolby vision? If content creators took advantage would I see any benefit?

Wanted get a TV that had it but read that not much content for it and I was on a budget.

rockwhynot1299d ago

Everybody needs to support Dolby Vison and Dolby Atmos. Then Dolby Laboratories can afford to lower the cost of their licensing fees.