JPEG-HDR is a backwards-compatible extension to the standard JPEG image file format allowing it to store wide color gamut, high dynamic range images. JPEG-HDR was created by Greg Ward and Maryann Simmons as a way to store high dynamic range images inside a standard JPEG file. It was later modified by Ajit Ninan, Greg Ward, Arkady Ten, Wenhui Jia and William Rozzito to support the addition of other features such as wide color.

This format reduces the file size required to store HDR images compared to other HDR formats such as floating point TIFF and RGBE.

Reduction in filesize is achieved by first converting the image into a tone mapped version, then storing a reconstructive multiplier image in APP11 markers in the same JPEG file. Ordinary viewing software will ignore the multiplier image allowing anyone to see the tone mapped version of the image presented in a standard dynamic range and color gamut.


Software programs that support JPEG-HDR's include Photosphere (by Greg Ward) and pfstools. A software encoder was available from BrightSide Technologies (formerly Sunnybrook Technologies, acquired by Dolby Laboratories in 2007). The new format that will be standardized will not support the old format headers.

Other formats

Other formats that use similar ways of storing additional HDR information in a standard JPEG image include ERI from Kodak and XDepth from Trellis Management. The XDepth technology has been recently integrated into the new JPEG XT standard for floating point HDR still images (Part 7). This technology supports any tone mapping operator, a generic gamma curve and wide color gamut, meanwhile keeping its backward compatibility with the legacy JPEG decoder.[1]

See also


  1. Artusi, Alessandro; Mantiuk, Rafał K.; Richter, Thomas; Hanhart, Philippe; Korshunov, Pavel; Agostinelli, Massimiliano; Ten, Arkady; Ebrahimi, Touradj (2015-12-19). "Overview and evaluation of the JPEG XT HDR image compression standard". Journal of Real-Time Image Processing. doi:10.1007/s11554-015-0547-x. ISSN 1861-8200.
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