How to enable HDR on Windows 11

Laptops running Windows 11
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Like Windows 10, Windows 11 supports HDR output. Unlike Windows 10, HDR works much better in Windows 11 and is able to be turned on in some applications. There are three ways to do this, and we’ll cover them all here.

Can you use HDR?

HDR (High Dynamic Range) is the first and most important feature of your display. In other words, you need the physical skills needed to display the HDR image on your TV or monitor. In Windows 11, you need several things to make HDR work:

  • An HDR display with HDR10 quality support. (You may need a new monitor.)
  • At least one DisplayPort 1.4 or HDMI2.0 cable and a GPU that supports the same.
  • A GPU that is PlayReady 3.0 ready.

If you try to enable HDR and the option is not available to you or it does not work, it is possible that one of the puzzle pieces may not be present.

How to enable HDR with keyboard shortcuts.

The easiest way to enable HDR in Windows 11 is to use a keyboard shortcut. Because Windows Desktop doesn’t look good with HDR on in most cases, it’s useful to quickly turn the feature on or off, depending on the content you want to use.

The keyboard shortcut is Windows + Alt + B.. Once you press the key combination, your screen may turn black for a second. When it returns, you’ll probably see an on-screen indicator like this.

HDROSD indicator
Sydney Butler

Of course, the colors of your desktop will also look significantly different and more vibrant with HDR On, if you still have doubts.

Enabling HDR in Windows 11 settings

Another way to turn on HDR in Windows 11 is through your display settings. Right-click anywhere on the desktop, and select Display Settings from the popup menu.

Display Settings Desktop Windows 11

Once in the display settings, make sure you select the correct monitor.

Display settings Windows 11

Scroll down to find the “Use HDR” option.

HDR toggle Windows 11

If you just want to turn HDR on or off, just click this switch. If you want to dig up more advanced settings, click the small arrow to the right of the toggle and you will see these settings.

Windows 11 Advanced HDR Settings

On this page, you can review what HDR looks like on your system and you can enable or disable aspects of HDR. For example, you can choose to play streaming video in SDR, even though HDR is on.

Auto HDR is an Xbox feature that has made its way to Windows 11. Windows will try to translate non HDR games into HDR. Sometimes it works well, but sometimes it makes things worse. So if your non-HDR games look weird with HDR on, you can turn off Auto HDR here.

Enabling HDR within applications

Some video games that support HDR can also turn the feature on and off using the menu entry. For example, from this screenshot Eternal torment Displays a menu entry where you can enable or disable HDR.

DOM Windows 11 HDR Toggle

This is easy because it means you don’t have to leave the game to make adjustments. Now you’re ready to flip this HDR switch no matter what you’re doing.

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