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What is HDR? – Definition, Disadvantages, And More (2023)

What is HDR? – Definition, Disadvantages, And More (2023)

Definition HDR

HDR means High Dynamic Range and refers to the proportion of light against dark areas in an image. It is a method to add more dynamic range to photos, that is, a more comprehensive range of tones.

Although it is a technique that is in use for a long time in the world of photography, in recent years, it has also appeared in high-end mobile phones.

It is a system that is succeeding in digital photography. In recent years, more and more mobile phones have a [HDR] mode for taking photos, especially high-end smartphones.

HDR mode

Instead of taking a single photo, the [HDR] uses three snapshots captured with different light exposures. Then, by software, these three shots are combined into one, and thus the best of each one is highlighted. Now smartphones do all that automatically since you have to take the picture and voila, the normal one and the [HDR] will appear.

Images that we take with HDR mode should look more like what your eye sees than what your camera captures. And it is that the human eye carries its HDR system, and that is why the result achieved with this technology is so fascinating.


However, the excess is not right, and in many cases, this technique is not useful. In the case of moving photographs, this mode will make the image look blurry. Another situation in which we should avoid HDR is in scenes with a lot of contrast, since these types of cases tend to be better with intense colors between dark and bright areas. Finally, you should avoid using it in compositions with intense colors, since the HDR will end up turning them off.

When should the HDR be used?

Landscape photos are the best to apply this mode. It is because this kind of image usually has a lot of contrast between the different elements: sky, earth, mountains. By activating the HDR mode, you can capture the details of the sky without the rest of the scene seen excessively dark, and vice versa.

We can also use the HDR for portraits in full sunlight, for low-light scenes or those with a backlight focus.

One of the latest news related to this mode is that YouTube will start serving HDR video content, but the exact date of its incorporation into the platform is not yet known.

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