Samsung, Fox Innovation Lab Developing HDR Reference Monitors for Hollywood

They will be based on Samsung's QLED TV technology.
David McNew/Getty Images

Samsung and 20th Century Fox’s Fox Innovation Lab are “exploring the creation" of high dynamic range mastering reference monitors for production and postproduction, based on Samsung’s QLED TV technology.

QLED — a Quantum dot-based LED technology — is behind the latest premium Ultra HD and HDR-supported TVs from Samsung, which were announced at CES in January. On Tuesday in Paris, the company further outlined this new display technology for the home.

But a challenge for Hollywood’s production and postproduction communities is that while the TVs can support HDR — meaning they have a wider range between the whitest whites and blackest blacks — there are still limited reference monitor choices for use on set and in color grading suites where the projects are being produced and mastered.

The Fox Innovation Lab (of which Samsung is a partner) has been working to drive forward new technology including HDR, and work on a QLED reference monitor — though availability is likely more than a year away — underscores that goal.

“At 20th Century Fox, we believe the future of entertainment is defined by technology and shared innovation between content creators and hardware manufacturers,” said Danny Kaye, executive vp at 20th Century Fox and managing director of the Fox Innovation Lab. “We established The Fox Innovation Lab in partnership with Samsung to incubate ideas and develop technologies that bring the best possible experience to consumers. That is why we’re working with Samsung to explore the full potential of high dynamic range.”

Kaye added that Fox anticipates growth in 4K Ultra HD HDR Blu-Ray titles and estimates cumulative global sales of 30 million units by 2020.