HDR technology can provide a never before seen increase in contrast, colour and luminance, producing images of unsurpassed realism and immersive potential, and is lauded in the creative sector as a truly transformative consumer experience, representing “the most exciting format to come along since color TV”. All the possibilities that the HDR format could offer, in terms of market growth for companies and improved user experience for the viewer, depend upon the existence of a fully functional HDR ecosystem. But we are currently a long way from such an ecosystem, as stated in very recent reports from several international organizations and standardization bodies, due to open challenges happening at all stages of the production chain, from capture to display.

The main goal of HDR4EU is to position EU companies in the creative sector as world leaders in the emerging HDR format by producing a set of professional tools, techniques and guidelines allowing for an HDR ecosystem to emerge, yielding a notably superior viewer experience in terms of image quality and content personalization. HDR4EU will:

– Showcase close-to-market and pilot versions of new technologies addressed to HDR content, catering for different communication and delivery platforms, and highlighting the feasibility and possibilities of an end-to-end HDR pipeline.

– Allow a user to have the best possible HDR experience on the outlet of their choice (cinema, TV, mobile device, AR/VR headset) by producing tools to meet new user expectations in hyper-personalized content consumption, using data and metadata generated during production, coming from the display device and its viewing environment, and taking into account individual characteristics and preferences.

– Provide content creators with tools to fully exploit the expressive possibilities of their media with HDR technology, making HDR media and HDR content converge onto an overwhelmingly better, at a whole different level, viewer experience.

Universitat Pompeu Fabra coordinates this Innovation Action within the Horizon2020 program with the participation of two research groups of DTIC, IP4EC (led by Marcelo Bertalmío), and GTI (led by Josep Blat).

The other partners are leading European cinema industries: ARRI, Germany, world leader in cameras; BARCO, Belgium, main world provider of digital projectors; BRAINSTORM MULTIMEDIA, València, Spain, leader in Virtual Studio solutions; FILMLIGHT, United Kingdom, world renowned in colour postproduction solutions, and Smoke and Mirrors, one of the main post-production houses of United Kingdom. The companies have received a number of Oscars and Technical Oscars for their participation in a number of films.

The project has started 1st July 2017, with a duration of 3 years and funding from the EU over 2.2 M€.