After a huge uptick in livestreaming to the platform over the past 18 months, YouTube has now confirmed that creators can livestream HDR content.

HDR video content is nothing new on YouTube, but this is first for livestreams after being announced in an official blog post. HDR, or high-dynamic range video, is effectively video with a more luminance, color, and contrast. HDR content, therefore, has deeper blacks and overall leaves images and video looking far more “realistic” than comparable non-HDR video.

We want to continue enabling these vibrant experiences in real-time. That’s why today we’re launching HDR for livestreams on YouTube. HDR videos have higher contrast, revealing precise, detailed shadows and stunning highlights with more clarity than ever. And by bringing HDR to livestreams, we’re unlocking the most spectacular image quality for live content yet. 

Being able to livestream HDR content to YouTube isn’t as simple as hitting a toggle. You’ll need compatible hardware, including a camera that is capable of recording in the format, plus a display to output the video. Many smartphones are now able to view HDR content, arguably bumping this announcement.

Starting today, any creator using a supported encoder can stream in HDR to YouTube. And any viewer can watch livestreams in HDR on supported devices, including the latest Android mobile devices or your HDR-capable smart TV or streaming stick. This launch marks the first step in our journey to bringing HDR livestreams to YouTube. We’ll continue to iterate on this offering, including expanding options for creators to stream HDR from additional encoders and mobile devices. 

As long as you have the right equipment, you can get started on streaming and enjoying yet more HDR video on YouTube.

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Damien Wilde

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