High Dynamic Range color grading and display in Frostbite

Talk by Alex Fry at GDC 2017.

This talk presents the approach Frostbite took to add support for HDR displays. It will summarize Frostbite’s previous post processing pipeline and what the issues were. Attendees will learn the decisions made to fix these issues, improve the color grading workflow and support high quality HDR and SDR output. This session will detail the display mapping used to implement the”grade once, output many” approach to targeting any display and why an ad-hoc approach as opposed to filmic tone mapping was chosen. Frostbite retained 3D LUT-based grading flexibility and the accuracy differences of computing these in decorrelated color spaces will be shown. This session will also include the main issues found on early adopter games, differences between HDR standards, optimizations to achieve performance parity with the legacy path and why supporting HDR can also improve the SDR version.

Takeaway
Attendees will learn how and why Frostbite chose to support High Dynamic Range [HDR] displays. They will understand the issues faced and how these were resolved. This talk will be useful for those still to support HDR and provide discussion points for those who already do.

Intended Audience
The intended audience is primarily rendering engineers, technical artists and artists; specifically those who focus on grading and lighting and those interested in HDR displays. Ideally attendees will be familiar with color grading and tonemapping.