Dolby Vision Technology to the Cinema and Home Theater

Dolby Cinema Basics. Image and Logos Provided by Dolby Labs

Dolby Labs has already created quite a stir in the past couple of years with introduction of Dolby Atmos immersive surround sound in both the cinema and home theater environments. Now, in 2015, Dolby is upping the ante on the visual side for both the cinema and home theater experience with the implementation of its Dolby Vision technology.

Briefly, Dolby Vision is an HDR (High Dynamic Range) technology that combines extended brightness, deeper black levels, and color enhancement that is encoded into film or video content during shooting or creation, or in the post-production process. The result is that images with superior brightness, contrast and color can be displayed either in a theatrical or home theater environment. Read more about the benefits of Dolby Vision

For home theater, Dolby Vision encoding can be delivered via streaming and also via the Ultra HD Blu-ray Disc format - However, as of 2016, an alternate HDR format (HDR10) has been implemented in the Ultra HD Blu-ray format, as well as on select Samsung and Sony 4K Ultra HD TVs - word on whether Dolby Vision compatibility will also be included is still forthcoming.

To experience Dolby Vision in its full glory, the content being viewed has to be Dolby Vision-encoded and your TV has to have the capability to display it. However, if your TV is not equipped with Dolby Vision, don't panic, as your TV will still be able to display the content - just without the extra enhancement options.

LG Super UHD TVs and Ultra HD OLED TVs, as well as Vizio have already hyped the fact that some of their 4K Ultra HD TVs will incorporate the ability to display Dolby Vision tech. However, what about that content?

Although it will be some time before Dolby Vision-encoded content is commonly available, it looks like Dolby Labs has launched a two-pronged approach in conjunction with several partners.

On the commercial cinema side, Disney has announced three upcoming films: Tomorrowland, Inside Out, and The Jungle Book (live action - coming in 2016) to be shown in Dolby Vision in select theaters as part of Dolby's initiative combining both Dolby Vision with 4K Laser Projector technology on the visual side, as well as Dolby Atmos surround sound on the audio side, for a complete Dolby Cinema experience.

On the home theater side, Warner Bros has teamed up with streaming service Vudu to deliver Dolby Vision-encoded films to compatible LG Super UHD  and Vizio Reference TVs, which are starting to become available (other TV brands may follow).

The first group of films to be delivered by Vudu will be Edge of Tomorrow, The Lego Movie, Into The Storm, Man of Steel, and more to come - all of which have been post processed with Dolby Vision. However, as new films get released theatrically using the process, they will also make their way to either (or both) the streaming or 4k Ultra HD Blu-ray Disc platform to compatible TVs.

Stay tuned for more info on Dolby Vision in the home theater environment as it becomes available.