When you work in the professional audiovisual industry like we do, you get used to people talking about the “next big thing” in AV technology. Some of these things turn out to be a flash in the pan and never really catch on, but others truly change the experience of watching television and movies or listening to music in your home. You may remember when HDTV first came onto the scene, offering a noticeably clearer, more vibrant picture. You probably didn’t wait too long before installing one in your Orange County home theater.
Well, the next big thing in viewing is here, and it’s called high dynamic range, or HDR. The technology has been around for a few years already, but it is just now starting to catch on, as more HDR content is becoming available from major streaming services like Amazon and Netflix, and on Blu-ray. Most of the higher end televisions currently for sale, and even some of the mid-range televisions now being sold, are HDR-compatible.
But is the upgrade worth it?
What is HDR and Why Do I Need it in my Orange County Home Theater?
HDR televisions offer what even televisions with the highest resolution (like 4K televisions) can’t—a better contrast ratio and more accurate color. Those two picture enhancements offer a noticeably better viewing experience, causing the images on the screen to “pop” and have more depth, but without being hyper-realistic.
You can read a more detailed analysis of HDR in this excellent article by tech writer Geoffrey Morrison on the CNET website.
In short, if the best picture quality available is your goal for your Orange County home theater, you need an HDR television or projector!
Why Do We Think HDR Is the Next Big Thing?
HDR will likely be in homes throughout Orange County soon because, well, it’s just better! As we mentioned above, it offers a more realistic picture, with a wider range of colors.
If the most recent CEDIA Expo was any indication, industry leaders and experts also seem to think that HDR is here to stay. At the San Diego convention for AV professionals earlier this month, there were multiple training sessions and panel discussions dedicated to the topic of HDR. One of them was even titled, “HDR: The Next Big Thing,” and discussed how HDR “provides a bigger and more visible benefit to viewers” than even 4K/Ultra HD televisions.
In addition, content providers, especially streaming services, are getting on board and offering more and more HDR shows and movies However, the cable and satellite service providers have been a little slower to come around to this technology, but it is probably only a matter of time before they join the HDR party.
If you’ve been thinking about installing a home theater in your Orange County home, or if it’s time to remodel your existing home theater, contact us at Good Sounds. We would love to talk with you about the latest trends in Orange County home theaters, including HDR, and help you design a space that checks all of the boxes on your wish list.