HDR Overview

Learning about HDR on Frame.io starts here

Robert Loughlin avatar
Written by Robert Loughlin
Updated over a week ago

Frame.io makes reviewing all types of media files easy, intuitive, and secure. This also includes HDR content. Traditionally, creatives could only review HDR content on specialized equipment in post production facilities. Frame.io allows you to review HDR content accurately from your supported iOS device, iPad, or AppleTV with the Frame.io app. With HDR on Frame.io, HDR review is now in your pocket.

Viewing HDR Files on Frame.io

HDR files on Frame.io will be labeled with a badge in the iOS app. This will appear on the thumbnail of the asset as well as in the player. To play the file, simply tap on it and your device will play it and display it in HDR. You can also AirPlay HDR assets from your iOS device or iPad to a compatible AirPlay enabled TV with HDR or AppleTV connected to an HDR display.

The badge will come in two colors: white and gray. A white badge means that you’re viewing the asset in 10-bit on Frame.io and a gray badge means that you’re viewing the asset in 8-bit. 10-bit HDR viewing is only available to Enterprise accounts.

Viewing HDR assets in the Frame.io app requires a compatible iOS device, iPad, or AppleTV (connected to an HDR-ready TV). See below for compatibility with each device type.


iPhone X and newer supports HDR playback.


iPad Pro 9.7", iPad Pro 10.5", iPad Pro 11", and iPad Pro 12.9" 2nd generation and newer support HDR playback.

💡Note: When viewing HDR on iPhone or iPad, make sure TrueTone and Night Shift are turned off. For best results, the device’s brightness should be above 70%.


AppleTV 4K supports HDR playback.

💡Note: Many browsers, monitors, and laptops can support HDR on the web. However, Frame.io cannot guarantee accuracy in desktop and web environments. For best results, Frame.io recommends viewing HDR assets on supported iPhone, iPad, or Apple TV 4K devices in the Frame.io app.

Creating HDR Files for Frame.io

In order for an asset to be interpreted correctly as HDR by a video player — including the video player on Frame.io — it needs three specific flags. The flags that need to be marked are Colorspace (sometimes called Primaries), Transfer Function, and Color Matrix. However, in most NLEs or finishing tools, you’re usually only able to specify Colorspace and Transfer Function (usually called “Gamma”), and the Matrix is assumed.

In order for Frame.io to recognize an asset as HDR, it needs to be flagged with one of these Colorspaces and one of these Transfer Functions (Gamma).

Supported HDR Colorspaces

  • Rec.709

  • Rec.2020

  • DCI-P3 (SMPTE432)

Supported HDR Transfer Functions (Gamma)

  • PQ (ST.2084)

  • HLG

Frame.io supports HDR assets in several different codecs. See below for compatible common formats. Note that this list is not exhaustive.

  • HEVC/H.265

  • AVC/H.264

  • Apple ProRes



Many NLEs and finishing tools can create these codecs. Please refer to your tool’s documentation for instructions on how to generate HDR files. For best results, HDR files should be 10-bit.

💡Note: Frame.io does not support DolbyVision or HDR10+ at this time.


What is HDR?

HDR is High Dynamic Range. Dynamic Range is the range from the darkest points of an image to the brightest points of an image. This means that a High Dynamic Range will have darker blacks and brighter whites as well as more detail. In addition, HDR images also have a Wide Color Gamut, which means they can display more colors, giving images more life. Viewing HDR requires an HDR capable display and a file encoded to certain HDR specs.

Where can I view HDR images?

You can view HDR images in the Frame.io iOS, iPad, and AppleTV apps on devices and displays that are HDR capable.

Is my iPhone / iPad calibrated?

Apple’s displays are considered color accurate out of the box. However, you can do a few things to ensure you see as accurate a picture as possible. Under Settings > Display & Brightness, make sure both True Tone and Night Shift are switched off. Finally, for HDR, make sure your brightness is set to above 70%.

Can I view HDR on the web?

Currently, limitations and inconsistencies between browsers make it difficult for Frame.io to universally support HDR in our web browser platform. For best results, Frame.io recommends viewing HDR assets on supported iPhone, iPad, or Apple TV 4K devices in the Frame.io app. However, you can download HDR files from the web app and play them on other HDR-enabled player tools.

Does Frame.io support 10 bit HDR?

Frame.io supports 10-bit HDR playback on Enterprise plans. Other plans support 8-bit proxies. Users must also be active, logged in members of Enterprise accounts to see the 10-bit proxies. Contact Support for more information.

Can I watch HDR on my TV?

If you have an HDR-capable TV, you can watch HDR in the Frame.io AppleTV app on supported AppleTV devices. Click here for more information on supported AppleTV devices.

What if I have an old iPhone/iPad?

HDR viewing requires an HDR capable display. If you have an older iOS device or iPad that does not support HDR, the asset will be tone mapped down to SDR. On older Apple devices, files will be tone mapped to levels appropriate for that device's display. While the files can be reviewed, they will not be HDR.

Are HDR videos from iPhone supported in Frame.io?

Yes! HDR videos recorded on iPhone are supported in Frame.io.

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