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TECHNOLOGY The Importance of Waveform Alan Wheable Monitors in UHD/4k Production Senior Technical Author at Omnitek Waveforms have always been one of the essential tools for anyone working in the video industry and are used for level alignment, grading and quality control to touch on just a few areas. Working with HD and 3G-SDI waveform technology may have been a solution in the early days of UHD/4k to display the waveforms from individual Square Division feeds, but it does not help if you cannot see the combined image at an appropriate size or resolution or the waveform monitor doesn’t have the required physical connections. It can be difficult to ensure the quality of UHD/4k production if the required tools are not available. The importance of appropriate waveform monitor technology in UHD/4k content creation and distribution increases with the need to ensure that conversions between link types (for example between QL 3G-SDI, 6G-SDI, 12G-SDI, HDMI and IP), between encoding methods (such as Square Division and 2 Sample Interleave), between different bit depth formats and between colour spaces (ie BT.709 and BT.2020) are correct. The waveform display must be expandable to see any digital level issues (for example when converting between 8, 10 and 12-bit video), image construction issues (for example when converting between link types and encoding methods) and colour space issues that may otherwise go unnoticed on T&M equipment with small, low resolution displays. Ideally the waveform display needs the ability to view the waveform of the composite image as well as the waveforms of individual links to make it easy to identify issues with 2 Sample Interleave and Square 54 | KITPLUS - THE TV-BAY MAGAZINE: ISSUE 112 APRIL 2016 Division images that may otherwise go unnoticed in any environment using existing HD/3G infrastructure to deliver 4k /UHD material. Although some T&M equipment may boast UHD/4k waveforms, these are often low resolution displays, with sub-sampled waveforms, that give a level of comfort and familiarity, but will hide any underlying issues. What is required is waveform monitor technology that has been designed specifically to meet the exacting needs of UHD/4k environments while supporting all of the different video formats that will be present in the industry for many years to come. It needs to be able to display waveform, CIE gamut charts and vectorscope instruments at the highest resolution, regardless of the physical link over which it is delivered and needs to be future-proofed to accommodate the evolving needs of the industry. The new high resolution waveform monitor available as standard on the Omnitek Ultra XR and as an option on the Ultra 4k Tool Box supports video formats from SD up to UHD/4k at frame rates up to 60Hz and supports both BT.709 and BT.2020 colour spaces. BT.2020 extends the viewable palette of colours (for UHD/4k formats above 60Hz) and improves dynamic range and the CIE Gamut display allows this to be viewed. Due to be debuted at NAB 2016, the Omnitek Ultra XR is configured specifically for content creators, colourists, post-production editors and other processors of DI, working with ultra high resolution UHD images delivered over QL 3G, DL 6G or 12G SDI and HDMI links. The Ultra XR provides all the traditional tools needed to work with DI - high-resolution waveform display,