Dolby Vision

A set of technologies to support HDR video.

Dolby Vision is a set of technologies developed by Dolby Laboratories for high dynamic range video. It covers content creation, distribution, and playback. Dolby Vision includes dynamic metadata that is used to adjust the brightness, color, and sharpness of each frame of the video to match the display color volume (i.e. the maximum and minimum brightness capability and the color gamut). It allows for the creative intents to be preserved on all Dolby Vision compatible displays. It was introduced in 2014, making it the first available HDR format.

Dolby Vision IQ is an update designed to optimize Dolby Vision content according to the ambient light.

Dolby Vision allows for a maximum peak brightness of 10,000 nits, however, according to the Dolby Vision white paper, as of 2018 professional reference monitors, such as the Dolby Vision HDR reference monitor, are currently limited to 4,000 nits of peak brightness).

Dolby Vision includes the PQ transfer function, a wide-gamut color space (ITU-R Rec. BT.2020 in YCbCr or IPTPQc2), up to 8K resolution, and for some profiles up to 12-bit. It can encode mastering display colorimetry information using static metadata (SMPTE ST 2086) and also provide dynamic metadata (SMPTE ST 2094-10, Dolby format) for each scene or frame. This dynamic metadata or Dynamic HDR allows adjusting of brightness and contrast (in reality, the tone curve) on the scene by scene or even frame by frame bases as and when required and adjusts it many times during the video/movie.

It is considered to be future-proof.

Technical details

The Dolby Vision format is capable of representing videos with a peak brightness up to 10,000 cd/m2 and a color gamut up to Rec. 2020. The current display cannot reproduce the full Dolby Vision brightness and gamut capability. There are no brightness and color gamut capability requirements for consumer displays. When the consumer display has a lower color volume than the mastering display, the content is adjusted to the consumer display capability based on the dynamic metadata.

Dolby Vision mastering display requires:

  • EOTF: PQ
  • Peak brightness: at least 1,000 cd/m2
  • Black level: at most 0.005 cd/m2
  • Contrast ratio: at least 200,000:1
  • Color gamut: at least 99% of P3


Dolby Vision metadata include:

  • L0 (static): Mastering and target display characteristics
  • L1 (dynamic): Automatically generated
  • L2 trims (dynamic): Manually generated per frame or per scene
  • L3 trims (dynamic): Manually generated per frame or per scene (since CMv4.0)
  • L8 trims (dynamic): Manually generated per frame or per scene (since CMv4.0) (the equivalent of L2 trims)
  • L5: Timeline aspect ratio description
  • L6 (static and optional): MaxCLL and MaxFALL (required for HDR10)
  • L9 (dynamic): Mastering display color primaries (since CMv4.0)

Dolby Vision 4.0 introduces new secondary trims for hue and saturation adjustment.


Dolby Vision is a proprietary solution by Dolby.

In 2021, compatible color grading systems can create Dolby Vision automatic metadata with no additional cost for content creators. A $2,500 annual license is required to activate the trims allowing content creators to manually adjust the video. OEM and manufacturer of a grading, mastering, editorial, or other professional application or device need to apply for a license.

Dolby SVP of Business Giles Baker has stated that the royalty cost for Dolby Vision is less than $3 per TV.

Dolby Vision
  • Dolby Vision Review: Good for Movies & Xbox or More HDR Hype? on
  • Dolby Atmos and Dolby Vision: A guide to Dolby in your home on
  • What is Dolby Vision? The dynamic HDR format fully explained on
  • What Is Dolby Vision? (And How to Get It) on
  • Dolby Vision on
Adapted from content published on
Last modified on June 12, 2021, 2:18 pm is a service provided by Codecide, a company located in Chicago, IL USA.