Michael Zink and Michael Smith received the Journal Certificate of Merit for their paper “On the Calculation and Usage of HDR Static Content Metadata,” published in the SMPTE Motion Imaging Journal in August 2021. After analyzing over 200 titles from Warner Brothers’ catalogue, they proposed a method for calculating the static metada for HDR10 content that eliminated outlier values, small bright pixels that fall outside the average.
In order for HDR10 content to match the capabilities of consumer displays that not infrequently have differing peak luminance and contrast capabilities to that of the mastering monitor, it is necessary to map PQ content to the target consumer display. This mapping is managed by metadata. This metadata includes information about MaxFALL, the value in nits for the frame in your project with the highest average brightness level, and MaxCLL, the value, expressed in nits, of the brightest pixel component in the project, as well as information about the display it was mastered on.
Outlier pixels can fool the target display into making the picture dimmer than intended. There have been several times where, after analyzing one of our clips with HDR10+ that the MaxCLL has been hundreds of nits greater than that of the waveform monitor of DaVinci Resolve.
Last year, we published an excerpt from an interview with Michael Zink, where he explains why HDR shows are often too dark.