When it comes to visual fidelity in games, HDR is all the rage today. It stands for High Dynamic Range and refers to the contrast in an image. It’s about getting the most difference between black blacks and white whites, and the difference it can make in content consumption is huge. Not only is the contrast often very pleasing to the eye, but it also allows for much more detail and color depth.
HDR is still relatively new on the scene compared to other technological innovations and the implementation can vary greatly. But that’s also why I’m excited to see a Windows 11 update to give you a little more control over how you view your HDR content.
Until now, it was simply a toggle to turn HDR on or off in Windows, and while it does a good job, it’s not always right. Sometimes things get overexposed, losing quality and definition, which is really the opposite of what HDR is aiming for. Other times, it doesn’t seem like enough and leaves you wondering if it’s working.
According Sweclockers, Microsoft is releasing a slider for the Auto HDR feature in Windows and what time is it to be alive. The slider works through the Windows settings menu, but can also be quickly adjusted if you are using the Xbox Game Bar.
This can be great for some games that are still a little experimental in their use and may need to be tweaked on a case-by-case basis. Most you’d expect to be able to set it and forget it, and there’s more good news too. The new slider can even save settings to game profiles so you can actually dial in the games you play most often to get the best level of HDR for them.
Given the rise in popularity of HDR, it makes sense that Microsoft is optimizing Windows 11 to get the most out of it. There’s even a calibration tool, and more settings are said to come in the future. Given how good the game can look in HDR when done correctly, this is a much-appreciated development alongside other cool new features such as better use of renewable energy and moving icons.