Dolby Vision VS HDR10: Detailed Comparison (2022)

How we see things has changed in recent years. Technology has improved a thousand-fold in the last few decades.

With every new TV of any brand that comes into the market, so does a new resolution. Each of these resolutions comes with a few tweaks or increased pixel count.

These few tweaks and increased pixel count improve your viewing experience and set a viewing standard. 

The top two resolution displays available in the market are Dolby Vision and HDR10.

But we don’t really know what differentiates one from the other. Let us compare them and see the difference between the two and what causes one to be preferred over the other.

Dolby Vision VS HDR10: Detailed Comparison (2022)

What is Dolby Vision?

Dolby Vision is an extended version of HDR that was created with the intention of preserving more information than what actually flows through the original content created, that is, the content that flows from the studio where it is created to your TVs or Monitors.

Dolby Vision, though an HDR standard, is proprietary to Dolby Laboratories.

The information that is carried is called metadata, and it carries information of every frame of a picture, movie, or TV show so that the device in use knows how to display the picture on the screen.

What Is HDR10?

HDR10, on the other hand, is a level up or more like an upgrade from HD.

Every television screen in recent times that works with HDR is compatible with HDR10.

HDR10 lets an image be twice as bright as compared to the standard dynamic range, and also has a one billion shades color palette with a simultaneous increase in contrasts.

Dolby Vision VS HDR10

Both Dolby Vision and HDR10 are higher versions of HDR and are along the same lines. So, there is a fine line in comparison between the two.  

The most significant difference and advantage that Dolby Vision has over HDR10 is the addition of dynamic metadata.

Dolby Vision uses dynamic metadata while HDR10 uses static metadata. Dolby Vision receives dynamic metadata, which carries every scene instruction to show the content as closer to the original as possible.

This metadata basically tells the display the most optimum way to display every frame. 

On the other hand, HDR10 only receives static metadata. This shows the basic information of the original content of the TV show or film.

It doesn’t have the capabilities to show how each scene should be displayed. The information is sent at the beginning only and doesn’t change after that.

1. Picture Quality

Another thing that HDR10 lacks that Dolby Vision has is that it cannot continuously optimize the picture to the abilities of the TV or the screen that it is displaying on.

Dolby Vision can optimize the picture according to the TV or screen. 

2. Brightness

 Dolby Vision can support up to 10,000 nits.

Nits are the unit used to measure brightness.

While HDR10, on the other hand, supports a lowly 1000 nits. However, the 10,000 nits though sound really amazing; there aren’t many TVs in the present market that can support 10,000 nits brightness. 

3. Bit Depth

Bit depth is the number of colors present in the display of a movie or TV show.

This also includes the number of colors your TV of choice can display too. The three primary colors make up your pixels. The same colors can be broken down into hues.

Hence, more the bit depth equals more the number of hues which equals more the number of colors.

4. Color Depth

Dolby Vision again has a higher color depth than HDR10.

Dolby Vision has a 12- bit color depth, while HDR10 has a 10-bit color depth.

Dolby Visions 10 bit-depth in current times is not entirely of use as there are no TVs in the present market that support 12-bit depth.

On the other hand, 10 bit-depth, which HDR10 provides, is widely available. So, the greater bit-depth provided by Dolby Visions is currently of no advantage.

5. Cost

Shooting in Dolby Vision requires an extra subscription which is needed to pay the director.

A lot of manufactures presently do not want to make the shift from HDR10 to Dolby Vision because that would require them to pay proprietary fees to Dolby Technologies.

HDR10 can be easily adopted and is royalty-free, making it pretty popular among TV manufacturers because of its budget-friendliness. 

Which One Is Better?

By just reading all of these specs, you might say that there is no comparison between Dolby Vision versus HDR10.

Dolby Vision is the clear-cut winner. However, that’s not all there is. 

Dolby Vision was introduced much later than HDR10.

HDR10 has been there for quite some time and hence has some sense of familiarity. Many TVs of top brands like Sony, Hisense, Samsung, and Sharp are compatible with HDR10 only.

HDR10 has much higher availability than Dolby Vision.

When any OTT or streaming service says that they support HDR, it means they support HDR10. HDR10 is the minimum they would be supporting.

Hence, this makes it universally much more available than Dolby Vision. 

Dolby Vision might seem very hard to find, but in recent years, this premium resolution can be found in UHD Blu-ray discs and also on OTT streaming services like Disney+, Netflix, Amazon Prime, and Apple TV+.

A few high-end TVs are trying to adopt, implement and support Dolby Vision. 

With an additional software update, HDR10 support can be added to the TV. This is not possible in the case of Dolby Vision and requires separate special hardware.

Conclusion

If we compare the two just on specs then, Dolby Vision wins by a significant margin. It all depends upon what is your need and want at the moment.

Dolby Vision not being very accessible makes it a bit tricky to navigate, even with its perks. 

HDR10 has great perks in itself but putting it up against comparison with the specs of Dolby Vision makes it fall a little short.

But at the moment, its vast availability makes up for it.

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