Converting for displays


Behind every great display there’s a great converter. Ever since television started to go digital in studios and post production, the number of digital formats has grown. For a while the television standards bodies got a grip and succeeded in pulling nearly everyone along the ‘SDI’ track; now itself expanded to HD-SDI and 3G-SDI – carrying a multitude of picture formats. With the growth in use of IT platforms the inevitable happened and more formats and ‘standards’ – some de facto – started to be used for ‘television’-like applications. Now we are in the true multimedia world with visual media stretching from mobile TV, internet TV and digital signage to digital cinema. The result is a vast range of moving picture formats of various sizes, shapes and rates, interlaced and progressive, connection standards including DVI and HDMI, 2D and now 3D. Not long ago TV picture monitors just had to work with 625/50 or 525/50 video, now there is a real need for monitoring to work over a wide range of formats.

There is a snag. A picture monitor gives its best results when operating in 1:1 pixel-for-pixel mode – when the input matches its native screen resolution – hence the appeal of native 1080-line screens for HD. Any other sizes that are accepted will have to be spatially converted (re-sized, uprez’d or downrez’d) inside the monitor to match them to the pixels of the screen. Exactly what that looks like will depend on the quality of the internal converter, and any converter has a limited scope of what it can do; and what do you know about the technical performance of any internal converter? Today, more than ever, budgets are tight so price is important too, so finding the right cost/performance balance for the display-converter combo is an issue.

Rewind just five years; then flat panel TV monitors cost a whole lot more than the screens used by the computer industry – which had all the required size and pixel resolution. Then at IBC2004 Doremi showed 1080 HD video beautifully displayed on a computer monitor. There was a little box lurking somewhere between the HD-SDI video and the DVI input to the monitor. This was the HDVI-10 converter that made possible an all-digital connection that scaled the original 1080 x 1920 TV pictures to fit the computer screen connected via DVI. That turned quite a few heads and created very good results at a greatly reduced cost. A year later the HDVI-20 was connecting images from digital intermediate workflows to lower-cost HD 50-60 Hz projectors.

A series of cross converters has followed. The recently introduced GHX-10does everything... well almost. It is an HDMI, DVI and 3G SDI cross converter with genlock and audio support. It can convert from any input to any output format or scan rate, supporting SD, HD and 4:4:4 2K digital film, employing 12-bit bicubic interpolation for the highest quality picture. The eight-channel AES, HDMI and SDI audio, can be embedded or de-embedded and delayed to match the video. With this you can plug in any video and achieve high quality results on any good HDMI, DVI or SDI picture monitor. An important element is not just changing the pictures’ size but also the frame rate, which includes going between interlaced and progressive scans. Handling such ‘standards conversion’ requirements in an elegant manner at a very low cost makes these products stand out.

No doubt these converter boxes will be all around IBC2009: maybe not on display, but just behind them. One that will be on show is the new GHX-3D, another head-turner that was premiered this year at NAB and is a direct extension of the GHX-10. It includes a 3D encoder/decoder enabling 2D equipment to work with 3D content. This is a useful and timely (as ever) innovation with the increasing popularity of both theatrical and home video 3D content. The GHX-3D is a simple, economic way for post houses to expand their 3D capabilities with existing playback hardware.

The GHX-3D encodes two separate left and right eye video streams into a single 2D stream that can be recorded on a standard 2D tape machine or video server. Then for replay, the single encoded stream is fed into the GHX-3D which generates a 3D stream to feed a variety of 3D display devices. The 3D stream is generated in several ways including two separate HD SDI links (left eye and right eye), one SDI, HDMI or DVI stream using side-by-side, checkerboard or line-by-line standard 3D formats.

So, once again, here is a converter that can produce results at a fraction of the cost of the traditional approach that would involve using two channels of record and play that must always run in sync. What grabbed people’s attention at NAB was the big-screen TV showing a 3D movie. This was set to present the left eye/ right eye pictures sequentially on the screen. As is often the case, the 3D display system required viewers to don active glasses to direct the left and right images to the correct eyes. The results stood up very well, validating the technology as a means record and replay 3D on 2D equipment. With the combination of rapidly increasing interest in 3D and the current difficult economic circumstances, the GHX-3D allows post houses and the exhibition industry to expand into 3D without the burden of upgrading record and playback devices. It is ideal for this transitory phase of 3D development.

File-based media
The above converters work with real-time baseband video but the use of file-based media is rapidly expanding. In this area the number of format variants is challenging so Doremi has developed an off-the-shelf solution that can, like the converters, produce the high quality video in the required format. DoremiAM asset manager offers comprehensive, easy, step-by-step operation for the import of universal media files to a wide range of Doremi players and servers. The DoremiAM XP/Vista PC software operates with many file types and coding formats for the automated Gigabit transfer of media files as well as offering transport control for Doremi servers.

The ‘universal’ digital media includes multiple video containers: Quicktime, WMV, AVI and MXF, and multiple codecs: Blackmagic 8-bit, Photo JPEG, MJPEG, Apple ‘none’, H264, MPEG2, DV, DVCPRO25, Avid DNxHD, xvid and divx, and multiple image formats: TIFF, TARGA and JPEG as well as audio: MPEG (Layer I, II, III), WAV and AC3. DoremiAM works with Doremi servers including the high-end uncompressed V1U (SD), V1-UHD (HD) and V1-UHD/LE (HD) players. The next release adds the V1-HD JPEG2000 server and the DSV-J2 JPEG2000 player (up to 2K).

DoremiAM also provides transport controls for browsing and selecting available media files for playback and the whole operation can be done from one place. Media file imports can include conversion to the native formats of the target Doremi servers, such as 480i (NTSC), 576i (PAL), 720p, 1080i, 1080p, and 2K. Once the conversion is done, transfers can proceed to complete the whole process.

Results
Converters are a necessary part of modern media handling, and are very often used close to or directly behind displays. Due to the nature of conversions of picture size and frame-rate, the results are always an approximation – meaning that the quality of output depends on the quality of the technology used, and will directly affect the results seen on displays. Getting it right can save money, increase flexibility and ensure looking good on the chosen displays – all the way to 3D.

As ever, things are moving fast and, although standards for 3D TV are still being discussed, there are now no technical barriers to the affordable deployment of superb, eye-catching 3D HD for museums, theme parks, venues and digital signage operations. Doremi’s popular 1RU SD/HD MPEG2 Nugget player can replay the 3D encoded video at up to 80Mb/s for decoding to a suitable 3D format via a GHX-3D to the displays.
Doremi GHX-10
Doremi GHX-10

Tags: iss032 | doremi | display | conversion | hd-sdi | 3g-sdi | dvi | hdmi | monitor | ghx-10 | N/A
Contributing Author N/A

Article Copyright tv-bay limited. All trademarks recognised.
Reproduction of the content strictly prohibited without written consent.

Related Interviews
  • Doremi at IBC 2012

    Doremi at IBC 2012

  • Doremi at IBC2011

    Doremi at IBC2011

  • Guntermann and Drunck CrossDisplay switching and CCD at IBC 2013

    Guntermann and Drunck CrossDisplay switching and CCD at IBC 2013

  • Bridge Technologies QoE Monitoring with Mobile Videowall Display at IBC 2013

    Bridge Technologies QoE Monitoring with Mobile Videowall Display at IBC 2013

  • Fusion Flash Drive and Dual DisplayPort Adapter from Sonnet at IBC 2017

    Fusion Flash Drive and Dual DisplayPort Adapter from Sonnet at IBC 2017

  • Guntermann and Drunck at BVE 2015

    Guntermann and Drunck at BVE 2015

  • Apantac UHD conversion technology at IBC 2016

    Apantac UHD conversion technology at IBC 2016

  • Lens Adaptor at BVE 2013

    Lens Adaptor at BVE 2013

  • AJA at BVE 2013

    AJA at BVE 2013

  • Radiant Grid at NAB 2012

    Radiant Grid at NAB 2012

  • Atomos Samurai Blade at BVE 2014

    Atomos Samurai Blade at BVE 2014

  • Atomos Ronin at BVE 2014

    Atomos Ronin at BVE 2014

  • Atomos Ninja Blade at BVE 2014

    Atomos Ninja Blade at BVE 2014

  • Atomos with the Samurai Blade on BroadcastShow LIVE at IBC 2013

    Atomos with the Samurai Blade on BroadcastShow LIVE at IBC 2013

  • Matrox at BVE 2013

    Matrox at BVE 2013

  • IP, 3G-SDI + HDR generation, analysis and monitoring from Phabrix NAB 2017

    IP, 3G-SDI + HDR generation, analysis and monitoring from Phabrix NAB 2017

  • Matrox Monarch HD at NAB 2014

    Matrox Monarch HD at NAB 2014

  • Matrox Mojito at NAB 2014

    Matrox Mojito at NAB 2014

  • Matrox Capture Card at NAB 2014

    Matrox Capture Card at NAB 2014

  • Apantac 4k UHD HDMI/DVI Multiviewer with KVM at IBC 2018

    Apantac 4k UHD HDMI/DVI Multiviewer with KVM at IBC 2018

  • Communications Specialists at NAB 2012

    Communications Specialists at NAB 2012

  • Guntermann and Drunck at NAB 2014

    Guntermann and Drunck at NAB 2014

  • Guntermann and Drunck at BVE 2014

    Guntermann and Drunck at BVE 2014

  • Guntermann and Drunck GmbH at NAB 2013

    Guntermann and Drunck GmbH at NAB 2013

  • Guntermann and Drunck at BVE 2012

    Guntermann and Drunck at BVE 2012

  • Guntermann and Drunck at IBC2011

    Guntermann and Drunck at IBC2011

  • HDMI over IP and KVM over IP with the Apantac OG-Mi 9 series shown at IBC 2018

    HDMI over IP and KVM over IP with the Apantac OG-Mi 9 series shown at IBC 2018

  • 4K UHD Multi-viewer HDMI 2.0 from Apantac at NAB 2018

    4K UHD Multi-viewer HDMI 2.0 from Apantac at NAB 2018

  • Atomos Ninja2 Recorder at IBC 2013

    Atomos Ninja2 Recorder at IBC 2013

  • Atomos Ronin at IBC 2013

    Atomos Ronin at IBC 2013

  • Atomos new Samurai Blade at IBC 2013

    Atomos new Samurai Blade at IBC 2013

  • Blackmagic Design on BroadcastShow LIVE at IBC 2013

    Blackmagic Design on BroadcastShow LIVE at IBC 2013

  • Lynx Technik at BVE North 2011

    Lynx Technik at BVE North 2011

  • Matrox at IBC2011

    Matrox at IBC2011

  • CueScript show their IP CSM Monitors at IBC 2018

    CueScript show their IP CSM Monitors at IBC 2018

  • New 703 Bolt monitor from SmallHD at NAB 2018

    New 703 Bolt monitor from SmallHD at NAB 2018

  • JVC monitoring solutions DT-G, DT-E, DT-U, and DT-V range at BVE 2018

    JVC monitoring solutions DT-G, DT-E, DT-U, and DT-V range at BVE 2018

  • Small HD 1703-P3X Monitor at IBC 2017

    Small HD 1703-P3X Monitor at IBC 2017

  • JVC 4K UHD Monitors at IBC 2017

    JVC 4K UHD Monitors at IBC 2017

  • Ikegami HQLM-3120W monitor at IBC 2016

    Ikegami HQLM-3120W monitor at IBC 2016

  • Apantac monitoring over IP at NAB 2016

    Apantac monitoring over IP at NAB 2016

  • Wohler MPEG Monitoring Series at IBC 2014

    Wohler MPEG Monitoring Series at IBC 2014

  • Sony Monitors at BVE 2014

    Sony Monitors at BVE 2014

  • Wohler MPEG Monitoring at BVE 2014

    Wohler MPEG Monitoring at BVE 2014

  • Marshall Monitors at IBC 2013

    Marshall Monitors at IBC 2013

  • 8k Daniel from Cinegy at NAB 2017

    8k Daniel from Cinegy at NAB 2017

  • JVC at BVE 2017

    JVC at BVE 2017

  • The Telos Alliance at IBC 2016

    The Telos Alliance at IBC 2016

  • Tektronix at IBC 2016

    Tektronix at IBC 2016

  • Wohler at IBC 2016

    Wohler at IBC 2016

  • Video Devices PIX-E at IBC 2016

    Video Devices PIX-E at IBC 2016

  • Sound Devices Wingman app at IBC 2016

    Sound Devices Wingman app at IBC 2016

  • Phabrix Qx at IBC 2015

    Phabrix Qx at IBC 2015

  • Phabrix TAG and Rx at IBC 2015

    Phabrix TAG and Rx at IBC 2015

  • NUGEN Audio at BVE 2015

    NUGEN Audio at BVE 2015

  • Phabrix RX series at IBC 2014

    Phabrix RX series at IBC 2014

  • RTW at IBC 2014

    RTW at IBC 2014

  • Tektronix at IBC 2014

    Tektronix at IBC 2014

  • Volicon Products at IBC 2014

    Volicon Products at IBC 2014

  • Volicon at IBC 2014

    Volicon at IBC 2014

  • RTW at NAB 2014

    RTW at NAB 2014

  • Studio Technologies at NAB 2014

    Studio Technologies at NAB 2014

  • Atomos Shogun and Ninja Star at NAB 2014

    Atomos Shogun and Ninja Star at NAB 2014

  • Wohler DPP at BVE 2014

    Wohler DPP at BVE 2014

  • Wohler Technologies on BroadcastShow LIVE at IBC 2013

    Wohler Technologies on BroadcastShow LIVE at IBC 2013

  • Nexidia QC on BroadcastShow LIVE at IBC 2013

    Nexidia QC on BroadcastShow LIVE at IBC 2013

  • Volicon on BroadcastShow LIVE at IBC 2013

    Volicon on BroadcastShow LIVE at IBC 2013

  • Atomos with the Datacolor Spyder on BroadcastShow LIVE at IBC 2013

    Atomos with the Datacolor Spyder on BroadcastShow LIVE at IBC 2013

  • Sound Devices on BroadcastShow LIVE at IBC 2013

    Sound Devices on BroadcastShow LIVE at IBC 2013

  • TSL Products PAM1, SAM1 and PAM PiCo at IBC 2013

    TSL Products PAM1, SAM1 and PAM PiCo at IBC 2013

  • Calrec Callisto at IBC 2013

    Calrec Callisto at IBC 2013

  • RTW at IBC 2013

    RTW at IBC 2013

  • JVC GY-HM600 series camera updates at IBC 2013

    JVC GY-HM600 series camera updates at IBC 2013

  • TSL Products at IBC 2013

    TSL Products at IBC 2013

  • Bridge Technologies PocketProbe App at NAB 2013

    Bridge Technologies PocketProbe App at NAB 2013

  • RTW at NAB 2013

    RTW at NAB 2013

  • Sound Devices at NAB 2013

    Sound Devices at NAB 2013

  • TSL Products at NAB 2013

    TSL Products at NAB 2013

  • TSL Systems at BVE 2013

    TSL Systems at BVE 2013

  • TSL Products at BVE 2013

    TSL Products at BVE 2013

  • Phabrix at BVE 2013

    Phabrix at BVE 2013

  • Datavideo on the Holdan stand at BVE 2013

    Datavideo on the Holdan stand at BVE 2013

  • Oxygen DCT at BVE North 2012

    Oxygen DCT at BVE North 2012

  • RTW at NAB 2012

    RTW at NAB 2012

  • TSL at NAB 2012

    TSL at NAB 2012

  • Qualis at NAB 2012

    Qualis at NAB 2012

  • Autocue at NAB 2012

    Autocue at NAB 2012

  • Digital Nirvana at NAB 2012

    Digital Nirvana at NAB 2012

  • TV ONE at BVE 2012

    TV ONE at BVE 2012

  • Autocue at BVE 2012

    Autocue at BVE 2012

  • Sennheiser at BVE 2012

    Sennheiser at BVE 2012

  • Sound Devices at ProVideo2011

    Sound Devices at ProVideo2011

  • Sennheiser at BVE North 2011

    Sennheiser at BVE North 2011

  • Source Distribution and Genelec at BVE North 2011

    Source Distribution and Genelec at BVE North 2011

  • Oxygen DCT at BVE North 2011

    Oxygen DCT at BVE North 2011

  • Pixelution at BVE North 2011

    Pixelution at BVE North 2011

  • HHB and TC Electronic at BVE North2011

    HHB and TC Electronic at BVE North2011

  • Leader at IBC2011

    Leader at IBC2011

  • Murraypro at IBC2011

    Murraypro at IBC2011

  • Marshall Electronics at IBC2011

    Marshall Electronics at IBC2011

  • TC Electronic at IBC2011

    TC Electronic at IBC2011

  • RTW at IBC2011

    RTW at IBC2011

  • DK Technology at IBC2011

    DK Technology at IBC2011

  • Oxygen DCT at IBC2011

    Oxygen DCT at IBC2011


Related Shows
  • Sony monitoring at BVE with Den Lennie

    Sony monitoring at BVE with Den Lennie


Articles
Using Wireless Transmission
Jeremy Benning Wireless acquisition is a staple of live sports, entertainment and reality shows where cable free capture permits shots not previously possible, for health and safety reasons, and gives the camera-operator greater artistic licence to roam. The same is increasingly true of narrative drama where cinematographers are keen to work handheld or Steadicam where that helps tell the story. Any equipment which frees their movement and time by being lighter, easier to use and reliable in performance is going to tick a lot of boxes.
Tags: iss134 | wireless | 4k | transmission | Jeremy Benning
Contributing Author Jeremy Benning Click to read or download PDF
Giving Welsh sport a global audience
Adam Amor From the Ospreys Rugby Union team, to the Football Association of Wales, as well as national cycling, swimming and boxing coverage, Port Talbot based Buffoon Film and Media has been heavily involved in putting Welsh sports on the world stage.
Tags: iss134 | blackmagic | atem | buffoon | micro studio camera | Adam Amor
Contributing Author Adam Amor Click to read or download PDF
Shedding Light on the Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera 4k BMCPP4K
Garth de Bruno Austin “What is it about light that has us craving it?” Is the question asked in the opening seconds of Garth de Bruno Austin’s latest short, The Colour of Light. Exploring this natural, human need as well as our innate desire to control it, Garth’s film showcases everyday people going about their lives in differing degrees of luminance, whether that be an artificial streetlight or a natural morning sunrise.
Tags: iss134 | blackmagic | cinema camera | 4k | cpp4k | Garth de Bruno Austin
Contributing Author Garth de Bruno Austin Click to read or download PDF
The brave new world of software based production
Boromy Ung In today’s rapidly evolving broadcast industry, the only constant media organizations can truly count on is change — and the need to adapt as rapidly and cost-effectively as possible. One of the biggest agents of change is the IP revolution, driving broadcasters to migrate their operations to all-software solutions running on commodity, IT-based technologies.
Tags: iss134 | chyronhego | graphics | sports | ott | Boromy Ung
Contributing Author Boromy Ung Click to read or download PDF
Protecting the continuity of transmission
Lorna Garrett Your viewers love you. You consistently bring them their preferred channels 24/7. They’ve come to rely on you for their viewing pleasure. They never miss cheering on their beloved sports teams. They’re the envy of their friends as they watch live concerts of their favourite bands. They gather the family around and catch up on their must-see shows. They don’t have a bad word to say about you.
Tags: iss134 | garland | gpl | streaming | artel | disaster recovery | Lorna Garrett
Contributing Author Lorna Garrett Click to read or download PDF