HDRÂ content offers better brightness and color capabilities compared to traditional content (sometimes called standard dynamic range [SDR] content). Traditional content typically shows details in a bright part of a scene or a darker part of a scene but not in both parts at the same time. For example, if the shot focuses on a bright window in the scene, details in the shadow are lost.
Whereas HDR can show a wider range of colors and light and more details in between the extremes. Colors are more vivid and unique in HDR content. Additionally, bright parts of a scene are brighter while dark parts can be darker, and you donâ€™t lose any details.
You might need to adjust the relative brightness of SDR and HDR content for yourÂ HDR-capableÂ display. This is because a display interprets an HDR and SDR signal differently, and the results will vary by make and model.
When you change theÂ SDR content brightnessÂ setting for an external HDR display orÂ HDR content brightnessÂ setting for a built-in HDR display, the effect it has on SDR content depends on whether itâ€™s an external or built-in HDR-capable display:
- On an external HDR display, this setting will change the brightness of SDR content relative to HDR content.
- On a built-in HDR display, the brightness of SDR content is controlled by a separateÂ brightnessÂ setting, or it might be controlled automatically. Since the brightness of SDR content is already set, theÂ HDR content brightnessÂ setting will change the brightness of HDR content relative to the brightness of SDR content.
For built-in HDR displays, such as on HDR-capable laptops, both the brightness setting andÂ HDR content brightnessÂ setting will affect the appearance of HDR content.
- Brightness setting. When viewing HDR content in a bright area, you might need to increase the brightness setting to see the display. However, this will reduce both the effective dynamic range for HDR content in apps and the overall contrast because the darker pixels will appear brighter. To improve the appearance of HDR content, view HDR content in a darker area and use a fairly low brightness setting. If the brightness is set to a very low level, that will increase the overall contrast between the brightest and darkest parts of the content. However, there will be less details in the darker parts of the content. For example, if you have a scene in a movie that shows a dimly lit room at night, you might see less details in that scene.
- SDR content brightnessÂ orÂ HDR content brightness setting. For most times, using the default SDR or HDR content brightness setting or one close to it should work well. You could set the SDR or HDR content brightness setting higher to help improve the overall contrast between the brightest and darkest parts of the content. However, this would reduce the details in the darker parts of the content, such as a scene in a dark room at night.
This tutorial will show you how to adjust theÂ SDR content brightnessÂ orÂ HDR content brightnessÂ for your account in Windows 11.