Images with Higher Dynamic Range and Richer Colours for Cinemas and Living Rooms

HD²R is researching ways to optimize the viewing experience by using a higher dynamic range of colours, contrast and brightness. To that end, the project will carry out pioneering experiments to achieve the optimal and reliable visual quality, conversion and colour correction of HDR images. HD²R is studying all aspects of the imaging chain, from the camera to screening in the cinema or in the living room.

Far-Reaching Conversion

High dynamic range (HDR) images are the next step forward in visualization technology. No wonder, HDR images reproduce both very dark and bright areas in realistic detail. After the first filmmakers, many TV manufacturers, TV broadcasters and visual material providers – such as Netflix – have jumped on the HDR bandwagon. The move is not so obvious for cinemas, as higher brightness requires powerful and expensive laser sources. In addition, the dynamic range of a projected image depends not only on the projector, but also on the room layout. 

Produce, Encode and Convert HDR Reliably

The HD²R project aims to define new, technically and financially viable guidelines for the deployment of HDR technology in digital movie theatres and in future television sets. The manner in which HDR images are produced and encoded is not the only concern. It is also important to know how to make sure today’s standard images and displays (SDR) are compatible with tomorrow’s HDR images and displays. This will require non-linear conversions of both the colour and brightness range. 

Visual Quality Experiments

HD²R proposes to answer those questions by conducting visual quality experiments in the cinemas of the Kinepolis chain, and with prototype HDR screens. This will enable HD²R to map out the human visual system and fine tune the HDR technologies and equipment based on those insights. In addition, HD²R will define suitable guidelines to help cinemas fully prepare for the introduction of HDR.  


"Based on extensive visual quality experiments, the HD²R project aims to ease the transition of next-generation cinema projectors and display screens to high dynamic range images."

Download Leaflet

HD2R leaflet download 


Images with Higher Dynamic Range and Richer Colours for Cinemas and Living Rooms.


HD²R is an imec.icon research project funded by imec and IWT.

It started on 01.10.2015 and is set to run until 30.09.2017.

Download as pdf

Project information


  • Barco
  • Barco Silex
  • Grass Valley Nederland
  • Grid
  • Limecraft
  • TP Vision Belgium
  • VRT


  • imec - ETRO-MMT - VUB
  • imec - IPI - UGent
  • imec - MICT - UGent
  • imec - MMLab - UGent


  • Project Lead: Dirk Maes
  • Research Lead: Peter Schelkens 
  • Innovation Manager: Stefan Van Baelen

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