The Dolby Vision format for games has officially been released for the Xbox, and now Dolby-specific HDR has entered a whole new medium.
Today we want to know more about Dolby Vision and its impact on computer games and understand why gamers make so much noise and excitement.
Dolby Vision enters games
Dolby Vision is Dolby’s proprietary format for high dynamic range (HDR) video content. This format is one of the few formats through which you can experience brighter, more colorful, and attractive images.
These features originate from the latest technology used in the display. HDR is now a standard feature on most new TVs, and HDR10 is the base and dominant format.
HDR videos have many advantages: wider color gamut, more detail in shadows, 10-bit color, and eye-catching highlights that use maximum brightness in new displays.
The HDR metadata tells the TV how it renders an image, such as how bright it is. In HDR10 format, the maximum brightness of the screen is very valuable. Dolby Vision can render the image at the highest brightness frame by frame with variable metadata.
This gives content creators more control over the content being portrayed.
Dolby Vision and its impact on computer games is a very broad topic, Dolby Vision has other benefits as well. For example, a maximum brightness of 4000 nits (versus 1000 nits in HDR10), as well as 12-bit video, are such advantages.
Currently, no display can offer 4,000 nits of brightness and 12-bit video, so the ground is ready for the next generation of TV technology.
Dolby plans to add the benefits of its HDR format to games via Dolby Vision. For gamers, of course, it’s more than just the colors and the wider dynamic range on the screen.
Dolby Vision also intends to solve the ongoing problem of HDR calibration for games.
Dolby has promised gamers that they can “say goodbye to manual screen settings” because games are automatically placed on your Dolby Vision screen during gaming, so you always get the full picture.
Because there is little standardization between games, gamers have always had problems with HDR. The HDR Gaming Interest Group (HGIG) format is built for this very reason, but few games support the designed HGIG mode. Games that support this format also require calibration and a display equipped with HGIG.
Dolby Vision acts as an intermediary, ensuring that the content is portrayed in the way the creator intended.
What you need to enjoy Dolby Vision
Dolby Vision for games is currently in beta testing on the Xbox platform. Currently, the Xbox X Series and Xbox S Series are the only consoles that support this format. Sony has not yet supported Dolby Vision in PlayStation 5 games. Although Sony can put Dolby Vision on its platform with an update, it still has no plans for it.
To enjoy Dolby Vision in games, you need an X or S series console and a TV or monitor that supports Dolby Vision. Microsoft has not yet said anything about this format for Windows, so PC gamers will still have to deal with HDR10 and HGIG PCs.
With the launch of Dolby Vision, initial problems appeared. While this format is theoretically compatible with HDMI 2.1 (4K resolution and 120Hz) displays, many models (including LG’s latest OLED model) only support 4K at 60Hz.
According to reports, LG has been working on a patch for the company’s new TV models such as the C1 and G1 since May 2021.
We hope LG will release this update for older models as well.
Because the MediaTek chip is used in some TVs equipped with Dolby Vision (such as Sony 2021 and 2020 models), 120 Hz 4K resolution will not be possible in this model because activating Dolby Vision will be disabled at A rate of 120 Hz will result. However, you can still enable games in 4K resolution at 120Hz using the HDR10 format.
Unfortunately, Samsung TV owners will not be able to use Dolby Vision for gaming because the South Korean tech giant does not support the format on any of its displays.
Is your TV compatible with Dolby Vision?
You can use the Xbox settings to check if your TV is compatible with Dolby Vision. Turn on your console and press the Xbox button to display its guide. Go to the “Profile & system” section using the (LB and RB) buttons. Scroll down and enter the settings, then select TV & display options.
Next, select “4K TV Details” to show the Xbox which modes are supported by your TV. If all the green buttons are on the screen, you can activate 120 Hz immediately. Exit the list, then select “Refresh Rate” and if you have not already done so, set it to “120 Hz”.
Which games support Dolby Vision?
While the Xbox Insiders app is still exploring Dolby Vision, some have suggested that the technology could be available for all Xbox games. It is not clear whether this is an improvement over the use of HDR10 with an Auto-HDR amplifier.
For best results, games must be optimized by Dolby Vision. This technology is compatible with games such as Gear 5 and Halo: The Master Chief Collection and Wreckfest.
TechRadar reports that games that support this technology by default will deliver better results.
This means that games optimized by Dolby Vision will have the best results.
Since many game boxes and digital store descriptions now have indicators to support HDR10 and Dolby Atmos, Dolby Vision is expected to be seen in boxes and market lists very soon.
It should also be noted that enabling 120Hz support on the Xbox does not mean that all games will use it by default.
Many games that support 120Hz modes have a switch in the settings. Most of these settings are called Performance mode or frame rate.
The future of HDR games
Although HDR support existed in previous generations of consoles such as the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, its implementation did not live up to expectations. As we explained above, Dolby Vision and its impact on computer games is a very broad topic. We hope Dolby Vision sets a new standard for gaming.