The only way to get the full dynamic range out in a render or bake is to save it as an EXR float from Blender. Not even saving 16-Bit PNG float will keep all the information in the highlights in Blender. But many applications call for another format other than EXR. Such as PNGs and even Jpegs.
So is there a way to compress the full dynamic range information from the EXR into a 8-bit PNG using Gimp? So basically all the HDR info in the EXR file can be seen in a 8-bit PNG and the highlights are not blown and the shadows are not crushed. In video, Log does basically that. Squeeze the dynamic range which normally couldn’t be handled by Rec709 into rec709.
Anybody knows how to do that with EXR to 8-bit PNG in Gimp? Again, I’m aware of the limitations of 8-bit PNG, but this is what I need to output to. So my question is really how to compress the dynamic range to fit the 8-bit limit.