4K Facts: SDR vs HDR What's the Difference?

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4K Facts: SDR vs HDR What's the Difference?

Community Manager
Posts: 3,389


With the launch of Rogers 4K Ultra HD some of you may not experience all your 4K TV has to offer if you connect a TV that is not HDR capable. Many TV retailers carry 4K SDR and 4K HDR TVs, but remember not all 4K TVs are created equal.


4K simply refers to the number of lines of resolution the TV can display (approximately 4000). SDR stands for Standard Dynamic Range. HDR stands for High Dynamic Range.


A 4K SDR TV has (approximately) 4000 lines of resolution (ie 4K) but is not capable of displaying the depth and richness of colours and contrast as HDR.  A 4K HDR TV has the same 4000 lines of resolution but is physically capable of rendering an image with increased contrast and richer colours\separation. This is due to the physical differences in the construction of the screen and not just how the images are processed, just like the differences between and SD and HD TV. 




Initially 4K broadcasts will be in SDR (Standard Dynamic Range), but don't worry 4K HDR broadcasts will begin later in 2016.  In order for you to get the best 4K TV viewing experience for years to come it is recommended you use a 4K HDR TV that meets the following specifications:


o   HDR10

o   HDCP 2.2 – required even for non HDR content

o   HDMI 2.0a – required for HDR10



One thing to keep in mind is that there are many different formats of HDR.  The one that is most defined is HDR10.  To support this format the TV also needs to support HDMI 2.0a.  4K content is usually encrypted as well and will require the TV to support HDCP 2.2