Sony released the new PS4 firmware 4.00, enabling HDR on all Sony PlayStation 4 consoles.
Sony just released the firmware 4.00 for the PS4 bringing HDR to all Sony PS4 consoles including the original PS4 released on 2013. HDR (High Dynamic Range) enhances the colors and contrast in games, creating much more vivid graphics. Sony announced HDR support last week at the PlayStation meeting that unveiled the new slim PS4 and the PS4 Pro.
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Besides having an HDR TV and a PS4 running firmware 4.00, you also need games that support HDR. Game developers will release patches for their games to enable HDR. A list of PS4 Games supporting HDR does not exist yet. Seems Sony has also surprised game developers with HDR support on all PlayStation 4 consoles and not just on the PS4 Pro. You can experience HDR right away in select content from Netflix's 4K channel.
Despite the availability of HDR now on the PS4, it will be still some time until you can play your favorite PS4 game in HDR if at all. This gives you some time to purchase a Television supporting HDR. Ideally you wait for Black Friday 2016 TV deals to arrive to safe on the predicted big discounts.
We have already released a guide to the best 4K HDR TVs for the Sony PS4 Pro. The TV guide for the PS4 Pro focuses on the high-end Ultra HD TVs. With this guide we bring you the best and most affordable HDR capable TVs to leverage the new Sony PS4 HDR feature. To get the price down, you need to cut back on screen size.
A cheap HDR TV comes from Sony. The 43-inch Sony XBR43X800D 4K Ultra HD TV with HDR is on sale on Best Buy for $649.99. The 49-inch model (XBR-49X800D) sells for $799.99.
Still under $1,000, the 55-inch Samsung UN55KU7000FXZA 4K Ultra HD TV with HDR is a solid compromise between budget and screen-size, available on Amazon for $997.99.
At cheapest HDR TV we could find is the 50-inch Hisense 50H8C 4K Ultra HD TV with HDR. Amazon sells the Hisense 50H8C for $493.94. The 55-inch Hisense 55H8C is on sale for $637.99.
The Dell TV store has hot offer for an HDR TV for Dell members. The 40-inch Samsung UN40KU6300FXZA 4K Ultra HD Smart TV with HDR sells for $499.99 on dell.com. With 40-inch it is small, but its supports Samsung's HDR Premium. The 40-inch Samsung KU6300 series TV is ideal for a small room or dorm.
Another 4K Ultra HD TV with HDR deal on dell.com is on the 55-inch Sharp LC-55N6000U 4K Ultra HD Smart TV with HDR selling for $599.99.
The Holiday shopping season 2016 will be all about 4K TV with HDR deals. Black Friday 2016 ads will feature a wide range of 4K Ultra HD with HDR support. Sony's PlayStation will be a big driver for the demand of HDR capable TVs. TV makers found their new 3D. The only difference is that HDR is really a value add and is not a flop as 3D on TVs turned out to be.
It worth pointing out that HDR is still very new. It is basically the second year HDR TVs are available and the specs for the technology are still a moving target. The range in quality of HDR implementation varies quite a bit. Refer to the 4K HDR TV Guide for the PS4 Pro to find out what to look for.
The most basic advice is to get a 2016 4K TV model. Last year's models are likely not offer the latest on HDR. Another quick indicator if the TV you are considering is a great HDR display is to look for the Ultra HD Premium logo. The UHD Alliance has created that a HDR certification to make it easy for consumers to know if a TV is supporting HDR fully. In technical terms the Ultra HD Premium logo means that TV meets standards of the likes of HDR10 (color depth based on 10-bit signal), peak brightness/black level combination of at least 1000 nits peak brightness and less than 0.05 nits black level, and display more than 90% of P3 colors in the BT.2020 color representation (Wide Color Gamut).
Not all TV brands are in the UHD Alliance. TVs can support high quality HDR, without the logo, but it is harder to find out. Especially bargain HDR TVs will likely lack the Ultra HD Premium logo.