HDR on PC Monitor

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    Apparently HDR seems to be the buzzword that circulates around the internet recently with the announcement of PS4 Pro supporting it. People who witness the technology in action mention a massive difference between on and off mode, with HDR on brings out lots more hidden details/textures to the game scenes on screen, not just better color. This proves to be greater than the transition from 1080p to 4K.
    I am dumbfounded by the fact that so far there is no HDR monitor on the market, while there has been plenty when it comes to TV. I’m a PC gamer, and I’m gonna buy a PS4 Pro, but I don’t want to buy a TV just for it.
    What do you think? Just want to dedicate this thead to HDR since it is to be the next big thing.


    The key issue with ‘HDR’ TVs and a key reason similar designs have not been adopted for monitors yet is that they rely on zonal control of the backlight. You don’t get the level of fine control that is attractive for use on computing applications – text and images with backgrounds of contrasting colours have ‘halos’ around them. They work fine (although not perfectly) for general entertainment purposes, but not general desktop use or work purposes. The screen size is also prohibitive as such technology can only currently be implemented on larger screens – with the smallest Samsung HDR TV being 40″ but the best zonal control being on models that are 48″+. 40″ monitors are already quite niche are already quite niche as it is and the additional expense, input lag (additional signal processing delay) and aforementioned issues in the desktop environment mean they are actually quite unattractive prospects for manufacturers and consumers.

    We’re unlikely to see any HDR monitors for these reason, with backlightless technologies such as OLED and QLED being what’s required for us to see them adopted more widely on monitors. They may be working on more efficient and effective zonal backlight control mechanisms that could be used for monitors, but the fact is zonal backlight control is nothing new yet it has never been implemented on monitors. The size restrictions are going to be one of the key factors here. Some manufacturers may claim a product is ‘HDR’ if it can achieve a very high luminance but just quite a ‘normal’ black depth. This is quite misleading and although a nice bonus it won’t give the same experience – it’s this sort of thing we may see on LCD monitors in the nearer future.


    @ PCM2 Just came accross this:
    it’s a VA panel, not OLED. Do you think it is possible this is a full HDR monitor?


    I suggest you stick to more reliable news sources in the future. Whilst an exciting product in many respects, it is not HDR in any way, shape or form – https://pcmonitors.info/samsung/samsung-c34f791-100hz-va-ultrawide-with-quantum-dot-backlight/


    @ PCM2 This just came out today. HDR on IPS panel. Didn’t think that’s possible:


    It didn’t “just come out”. It is a prototype that has been showcased and is going to be very expensive if it becomes available. Also, look at how thick it is! That’s what you need for a ridiculous full-array backlight on a relatively small screen and reinforces my earlier points about why manufacturers haven’t done this:

    “Needless to say, this is a prototype panel. Businesses with large enough checkbooks are free to try and estimate a figure for such a display, because it will be a while before a device of these specifications hits commercial availability.”


    What exactly makes a monitor or TV HDR? Is having a large color gamut coupled with a large contrast ratio all that is needed? This would make OLED screens automatically HDR.


    No. ‘True HDR’ (the ultimate goal, if you prefer) requires a very large colour gamut (Rec. 2020) which OLEDs certainly aren’t automatically capable of. And it isn’t just about contrast ratio, which OLEDs will be superb for, but also maximum luminance. The idea is to have extremely dim and extremely bright elements displayed on the screen at once – and being able to output ~350 cd/m2 max. as most monitors tend to doesn’t cut it in that respect. Due to potential lifetime/degredation issues it is not likely that OLED is a good candidate for that sort of luminance, but QLED might be better. Which is one of the reasons Samsung has diverted a lot of attention that way (refer to our article on the topic).

    By having some TVs which sort of support HDR (i.e. have decent but not outstanding contrast, good but not amazing maximum luminance and a decent but certainly not Rec. 2020 colour gamut) the manufacturers have sort of muddied the waters. But it’s just to sell products of course, with some benefits even if they don’t go all the way.


    Is QLED likely to have a larger color gamut then OLED? If QLED pixels can produce colors that are closer to being monochromatic they will allow for a larger gamut. An alternative would be to add a 4th subpixel to increase gamut. I know this was tried once (not with an OLED) but didn’t catch on.


    Yes, I think QLED does have the potential to offer more intense light of pure colour and therefore a larger colour gamut. It would also be easier to arrange with additional subpixels as you suggest without manufacturers having to worry about differential lifetime/degredation for the different colours.



    More than 95% coverage of DCI-P3, pretty impressive, considering some high end HDR TVs also only cover more than 96%
    Seems like the panel is IPS, surprising choice for HDR. Does it use double Liquid Crystal Panel developed recently by Panasonic? (http://news.panasonic.com/global/press/data/2016/11/en161128-4/en161128-4.html)
    Peak brightness is not mentioned, but hopefully it can reach 1000 nits. Gsync/Freesync support and input lag are also not mentioned, but will be revealed during CES 2017 in Jan.
    What do you think? Price may be well over 1000 USD.


    If you look back on my previous posts, you’ll see what that this is exactly what I was alluding to. Whilst it is an exciting product, it is bound by exactly the same restrictions as usual LG IPS panels in terms of black depth. It will be able to display mediocre blacks at best, but will be able to pulse its backlight to very bright levels for certain sections of the image. It supports something called ‘HDR 10’ – refer to our tweet. It’s definitely a step in the right direction and it’s lovely to see that sort of backlight employed on a ~32″ screen – but it is worlds away from the sort of HDR experience you’ll get on an OLED or similar screen.

    And no, it will not be using a ridiculously complex and expense technology from a rival company that is specifically designed for broadcasting monitors – https://forum.pcmonitors.info/topic/new-monitor-panel-discussions/page/14/#post-40739.


    I suppose I should update this small thread with a mention of monitors such as the ASUS PG27UQ which make use of rather tight zonal control of the backlight and support ‘G-SYNC HDR‘. I wasn’t expecting to see this myself, so it’s something I’m quite excited to test hopefully later this year. It isn’t yet clear whether the zonal backlight dimming is controlled exclusively by G-SYNC and potentially tied to HDR content, or whether it can be used outside of those parameters as well.


    This monitor is interesting, if it have ulmb with all other features intact then it would be the best monitor due to quality of features it provides on papers. Implementations is as we all knows varies, like ulmb have crosstalk, inter unit quality variation , etc, etc. And it is going to be around what 1250~1500$ atleast.


    Indeed. Will be interesting to see how it all plays out.

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