If last year's Consumer Electronics Show was the moment TV manufacturers went all-in on 4K, this go around will be when those companies do the same for HDR. Short for high dynamic range, HDR boosts a TV's contrast ratio and color accuracy for a richer and more realistic look. We've heard about it in the past, but expect HDR to be back in full force. LG has decided to get ahead of the CES 2016 news deluge by revealing its three new LCD 4K TVs will all come equipped with its fancy-sounding "HDR-Plus" capability.
HDR-Plus combines LG’s so-called Color Prime Plus — which uses a new filter to try and replicate cinema-quality color — with the company's Ultra Luminance technology for an improved contrast ratio. That's a lot of marketing speak, but in other words, LG wants you think that its HDR is better than everyone else’s. Granted, it appears LG and other TV manufacturers have decided not to use Dolby's stunning Vision specification, which could become the standard down the line.
LG wants you to think its HDR is better than everyone else's
Appearing forward-looking is important as more and more TV makers continue upgrading their lineups to 4K and begin looking for new technology terminology to attach to their latest products. Sony and Samsung have already updated some of their current higher-end TVs with HDR compatibility, and we can expect every TV maker to push HDR heavily next week.
LG's three new 4K LCD models — UH9500, UH8500, and UH7700 — range in size from 49 to 86 inches, and every model will come with LG's new webOS 3.0 software, which the company is debuting next week as well. Little distinguishes the TVs from each other, but LG is touting the UH9500's slimmer design, which now has a gap of only 6.6 millimeters between the display and the back cover chassis. And it wouldn't be CES if there weren't any ultra-giant displays, so LG is bringing its 98-inch 8K UH9800 model to Las Vegas as well.
HDR is the new 4K
Just as with 4K, HDR requires content to transform it from a marketing perk to something a consumer can actually enjoy. We're already starting to see faster adoption of 4K thanks to streaming services like Netflix, Amazon, and YouTube, and we'll likely see the same throughout 2016 with HDR. Companies like LG will need the new content if they hope to sell more TVs this year.
LG won't disclose prices right now, and it's keeping mum on the state of its OLED lineup. The company appears to be saving that info for its press conference, which starts at 8AM PT, Tuesday, January 4th. Check back with The Verge for those details and everything else CES-related starting next week.