There's definite banding in the sky, which is a combination of JPEG compression of these posted versions and actual banding from the compressed dynamic range.
The pseudo-HDR .png screenshots, before and after Photoshop. Set color space as Rec. 2100 with a fake 2.4 gamma, ran Auto-Tone, and converted to sRGB.
Slight loss of details in the brightest areas, but it looks pretty good without much manual intervention.
The signal appears to be using the PQ (perceptual quantizer) transfer function which is a log-sorta thing, so the entire signal loses contrast horribly.
I'm not sure if representing the transfer function correctly in the color profile really matters, since I'm mapping it back into sRGB for online posting after a bunch of adjustments anyway. :)
Colors seem right, at least, and all looks good after mapping & converting to sRGB.
Back to screenshots -- I've had little luck with the .jxr JPEG XR files (both Windows Photo viewer and Photoshop with a plug-in will read them, but they're wildly overexposed).
GeForce also saves a .png file though, which seems to compress the 10-bit HDR signal into 8 bits and then fail to mark it up with a color profile. :D
I'm manually adjusting these in Photoshop for now, using a custom Rec. 2100 color profile that uses the right white point and primaries, but wrong gamma. Then can tone-map from there.
Oh fun, I noticed the M1 MacBook Air also has a 400-nit max brightness display, mostly covers P3 color gamut, and Chrome will play back HDR video on it! Looks similar to on the PC display, but smaller. ;)
The very brightest areas blow out a bit just like the DisplayHDR 400 monitor on the PC, since 400 nits isn't enough to cover HDR10 range (max peak of 1000 nits) though I think the display is slightly better handling the transition to max brightness whereas on the PC it can just clip.
But since I have a DisplayHDR 400 display (the lowest level of DisplayHDR branded compatibility) my maximum brightness is lower than what can be represented in HDR, and the high-end bright areas blow out without the tone mapping. ;_;
Video captures at least seem to be correct, though I don't get tone-mapping to my display's capabilities on playback like I do while running the simulator.
I'm not sure if this is the fault of Windows, the video player apps, or my display. :D
So HDR is "fun" technology and still has some rough edges. ;)
Nice doc from MS on the app developer perspective:
Most likely Flight Simulator is rendering to a floating-point surface in scRGB color space, a non-normalized variant of sRGB that allows wider color gamut and higher luminosities, so is good for HDR.
This then gets converted to HDR10 somewhere, which is 10 bits per channel integer in Rec. 2100 color space.
Then the screen shots compress the dynamic range to ~7 bits. :P
Ok it took several hours to fully process a 5-minute video at 3440x1440 60 fps 10-bit HDR. :P
The SDR version is decent, only slight blow-outs of colors at the bright end, but the HDR version (which only seems to work in Chrome, not Firefox) shows the same huge color blow-outs in all bright areas that I see playing the capture back locally. Sigh.
It's a visual improvement *when* it works. Horrible when it fails.
Trying an upload to YouTube to see how it handles the HDR videos. Took forever to upload a few minutes worth of video, because my cable internet is absurdly asymmetric. I only get something like 20 Mbps up iirc. :P :P :P
efff you comcast
Ok, so playing the HDR video captures in VLC I can adjust the brightness and contrast down and restore the detail in bright areas, so it's got all the data but something's wrong causing the default display to be blown out.
The same blown-out view is visible in the simulator in windowed mode, or when another window is in the foreground. No clue what's going on, if there's any settings I can change, or if it's a big MSFS bug, or what.
1) video captures are saved as .mp4 wit HEVC and HDR10 specs, but the very top range of brights is blown out compared to what I originally saw on screen. Not sure what's wrong there.
2) the win10 Photos app video trimmer throws a "permissions" error when you try to trim one of these videos
I don't want to have to trim with ffmpeg. Fuuuuuuuuuuck
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