This question is about the "HDR" acronym now being applied to some televisions. "HDR" is this context does stand for High Dynamic Range, which is of course a well known concept in photography. However, HDR as used for televisions actually has very little to do with HDR in photography - for televisions, it basically just means "bigger total dynamic range", whereas in photography it's a clever technique for making there be more apparent dynamic range in an image while not modifying the total dynamic range at all.

Are questions like this which actually have nothing to do with the photography concept on topic?

  • Correct me if I'm wrong, but you're confusing HDR and tone mapping. HDR in photography is not "a clever technique for making there be more apparent dynamic range...", but tone mapping can be used to do so. So really, those concepts are not "similar", they're the same.
    – franssu
    Sep 22 '15 at 10:39
  • That's true in a pure sense, but when "HDR" is used in a photographic context, it exclusively means the whole process of combining multiple images and tone mapping them. If you released a photographic product with an "HDR" feature which just combined images without tonemapping, you'd be laughed at.
    – Philip Kendall Mod
    Sep 22 '15 at 10:46
  • HDR Image Gallery (you can move the sliders on top of images)
    – franssu
    Sep 22 '15 at 10:48

I can see it as reasonable to explain that the term is different than the similar one used in photography, and briefly detail how/why — but not to go into a lot of detail into the off-topic part.

Reasoning: if someone comes into photography with a preconception based on a similar but (either subtly or broadly) different use of a term in a different field, it's nice straighten out the confusion with a simple, concise explanation.

But I don't have a strong opinion.

  • 1
    Accepting this answer as a consensus "marginally on topic".
    – Philip Kendall Mod
    Sep 18 '15 at 17:29

My take: off-topic. Just because the terms are the same, it doesn't mean it's on-topic here. A question about (window) shutters wouldn't be on topic just because a camera has a shutter.


The OP appeared to be looking to establish the relationship between the HDR acronym as used in HDMI HDR specification (which offers wider gamut and higher bits/pixel) and the photographic process of producing HDR images from multiple images.

This was most clearly indicated in the question where Ivo asked:-

...does HDR on TV really mean that these multiple images per frame are available to the TV...

Since it was asking about the common photographic use of HDR, I felt it was on topic and voted not to close and provided an answer.


With regards to HDR as it is used in photography and how it is used on the new TV displays, Brandon Scott's answer states "they both refer to the exact same thing." In one sense I agree that there is a large overlap between the concepts. But also, it is quite clear that the question is in regards to TV standards which is really a different topic. On that first hand again, though, I did find it an interesting question and it may also be of interest to others who are keen about photography. So I am on the fence as well.

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