Originally Posted by cmdrdredd
You aren’t supposed to be “blown away” by hdr. Only if that’s the intention like tech demos. You are supposed to see increased depth, more vivid colors, more detail in the shadows, better contrast etc and over the SDR 1080p release all of those elements are a very big upgrade.
I don't think anybody is saying they were expecting a tech demo when they said they weren't blown away. What we (or at least, I) mean by that is there were practically no scenes that looked like they used HDR in a way to do anything that SDR is incapable of doing. I saw this in 3D in the theater, which is also SDR, and there was almost nothing about the HDR release that looked particularly different in terms of highlights, color, or detail compared to the SDR version. Also, anybody who has seen good HDR knows you don't actually need to compare it to the SDR version to instantly know its making good (and not exaggerated) use of the format.
There were three moments I can recall where I thought HDR was doing something SDR probably didn't do. First, there were red glowing weapons some of the Sakaar people were using. The red here looked more vibrant and bright than SDR would be able to pull off effectively. Second, on the escape scene, the clouds looked like they had some slightly brighter highlight detail that was just above the limits of SDR. Finally,
So yes, while there was limited use of the format, the movie had so much more potential, especially in its use of color, that went almost completely untapped.
When you compare it to Guardians 2, Spider-man Homecoming, and Pirates 5 (I haven't seen Cars 3 in HDR yet), this movie is far weaker than those in its use of HDR. In regards to Spider-man, it's best use of HDR was in its night scenes. Added shadow detail and brilliant highlights looked beautiful, especially in Dolby Vision.
In contrast, 3D was a much bigger upgrade than HDR with Ragnarok. Not as vital to the experience as it was for Guardians (I felt the HDR was an equal upgrade with Guardians, but certain scenes felt like they were missing something without 3D), but still a nice upgrade over SDR 2D, with plenty that stands out. I mentioned my disappointment with the HDR of Ragnarok because I was originally considering importing the 3D version but decided to preorder the 4K instead after seeing reviews that convinced me otherwise. Now I'm going to have to double dip to get the 3D for future viewings as that was a much more enjoyable experience imo.
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