SDR to HDR Conversion

Continuing my current theme around High-Dynamic-Range and Wide Color Gamut, two new standards introduced as part of the next generation UltraHD specifications, we have some interesting technology to present that I believe can help foster and accelerate adoption of this exciting new format.

Converting SDR content

A critical component of the ecosystem for HDR is the need to convert legacy Standard Dynamic Range (SDR) content to HDR at very high quality. Although this is a very difficult technology problem,we explain how our ImageIQ® SDR-to-HDR upconversion works in our latest whitepaper.

In essence, in the whitepaper we explore in detail what it takes to convert a low dynamic range and limited color gamut image to a high dynamic range image and full color gamut image – without artifacts or degradations.

Eigensystem Analysis

Our patented approach to upconversion uses a method called Eigensystem analysis. This distinguishes whether the pixel is noise, in a textured region (and how much texture is there), if the pixel is in an edge region (and the orientation of the edge), or in the background.  This is critical to performing intelligent upconversion.

SDR Image

The image below shows a 6-bit per channel with 75% Rec. 709 color gamut.  You can see banding in the sky gradient, with colors appearing “muted”, overexposed highlights and dark-greyish shadows.

Figure 1 – 6-bit per channel with 75% Rec. 709 color gamut

 HDR Upconverted Image

The image below has been upconverted to HDR.  Note that the sky gradient is much more colorful, with no banding or stepping of colors.  Additionally, the sun is now a brilliant yellow and the shadow portions are completely black.


Figure 2 – 8-bit per channel with 100% Rec. 709 color gamut

Most importantly, this is performed without the addition of any artifacts such as “ringing” around edges, and there is no loss of detail.

I would encourage interested readers to peruse our new whitepaper and to ping me with any questions.  We’re excited about the possibilities that HDR brings to the viewing experience, and are looking forward to help making that a practical reality!


~ by opticalflow on May 5, 2016.

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