HDR Meaning Explained

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In this article, I give you HDR meaning explained. In short, HDR is something that awaits either a bright future or a huge doom. The environment does not exist. And you must have noticed the abbreviation HDR among the specifications of smartphones that you had the opportunity to take a look at. Let’s find out together what HDR is and what it’s really about.

What is HDR?

HDR stands for “ High Dynamic Range, ” which roughly translates to a wide dynamic range. This term refers to the technique of photography that is part of the “old school” and photographic practice. Namely, photographers often took photos with lower, optimal, and higher exposure, and later merged those photos into one and thus got the ideal image. Today HDR does this instead of automatically and there is no need to know old photographic techniques to get such a photo.

In the last couple of years, HDR has become increasingly popular and is finding its place on professional cameras. And a few months ago, he moved to the small cameras on our smartphones, so we can meet him on more and more top models. The main goal of HDR is to take better photos.

Why HDR?

The main argument in favor of HDR is credibility, that is, the desire to transfer the image that our eyes see to the photograph as faithfully as possible. Whether it is a lens that has a smartphone camera or one on a professional camera, one thing is for sure – these two lenses are different from the human eye. The main difference is that these devices have one lens, while a person looks with two eyes. This affects focus and other factors of perception.

One of these factors is the dynamic range, which is a beam of light that the human eye is able to perceive. Due to the wide range of range that the human eye sees, it creates a perfect image even when it is quite dark outside, but also when the sun is “hot” at noon. In order to bridge this difference between the lens and the human eye, HDR enters the scene.

On what principle does HDR work?

As we have already said, HDR is made to transmit what your eyes see, that is, to cover the same or similar dynamic range. Dynamic range is the key category because it refers to the lighting and exposure of the photo.

Often, to get the most accurate photo and the most similar to what you see, you need to take several photos in a row. You later scroll through these photos through an app and get the best, life-like photo. HDR saves you that torment! Phones that have HDR will usually offer you one “regular” and one HDR photo. Keep in mind that this one HDR photo is actually 3 in 1, so the phone takes a little longer to get the result. The first photo taken has a lower exposure level, the second is at the optimal level, and the third is with the highest exposure level. Combining these three photos, we get a perfect one, in which all the objects are shown in detail.

When can you use HDR?

You can use HDR for any photo, but there are opportunities where it gives the best results. These are, for example, images of landscapes where using HDR you can create a great contrast between the sky and the earth by brightening some parts of the sky and darkening the earth. On the other hand, HDR is great even when you are in a space that is not too bright. Using HDR you can balance the lighting, ie. lighten the photo.

In addition to the benefits that HDR has, there are times when it should be avoided. For example, it would be a situation when you take photos of something strong and vivid because it will not work out well. The colors will look washed out and won’t even be as intense as live. Also, if you use HDR when you want to record someone’s movement, there is a high chance that the photo will be blurred, ie. blurred. Remember that HDR works by transforming three photos into one perfect one, and some situations are simply not suitable for something like that.

Which phones have an HDR option?

Given that HDR is a trend that has emerged recently and is a very “expensive toy”, you can find it mainly on newer top models.

Phones that currently support HRD are:

  • Google Pixel XL – Google’s phone will undoubtedly give you one of the sharpest photos you’ll ever see! HDR has been brought to perfection on this phone, and all that separates you from it is a single button.
  • Huawei P9 – This Chinese brand will delight you with the relationship between color, contrast, and sharpness of photography. The Huawei P9 knows very well which object to focus on and then apply HDR. The colors are more vivid, the contrast is noticeable, but “it doesn’t sting the eyes” and every detail can be seen.
  • iPhone 7 Plus – When it comes to color and contrast, the iPhone 7 Plus is the undisputed winner! However, we wouldn’t give it a rating of 10, considering that HDR on this smartphone doesn’t have a great “eye for detail”.
  • LG G6 – The LG G6 can easily line up with Google’s model. Excellent contrast, defined colors, and attention to detail are the main advantages of HDR on this phone.
  • Samsung Galaxy S8 – In the eternal battle of Samsung vs. Apple, we have to say that, in terms of HDR, Samsung is leading. The exposition is perfect, and the vibrant colors will surely catch your eye.

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