[opendtv] Re: 480i 16:9 with pillarboxed image

  • From: Craig Birkmaier <craig@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: opendtv@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Sat, 29 Dec 2012 09:09:08 -0500

At 9:28 AM -0800 12/28/12, Ron Economos wrote:

I've never seen any professional equipment that does 853x480
at any frame rate. AFAIK, 853x480 content, sources, transport,
encoding, decoding etc. does not exist in the broadcast world.
Folks might be doing it on PC's, but the content would have been
scaled from some other resolution.

It certainly "did" exist. NTV in Japan broadcast 853 x 480@60P for a number of years in Japan, and demonstrated the format at NAB for several years during the '90s.

There are SMPTE standards for the format including a dual link SDI specification for moving it around facilities.

The NTV system was native 853 x 480, but it is now trivially easy to resample from an HD format and encode using a wide range of pixel counts per line and lines per frame.

This is EXACTLY how most of the OTT services deliver their content, often with multiple versions that can be streamed based on the target decoder/display and the available channel bandwidth. But almost ALL of these streaming services left MPEG-2 behind years ago because of MPEG-LA royalty issues.

By the way, it looks like the Justice Department may be launching an anti-trust investigation targeted at MPEG-LA, which has called for companies to submit patents they believe may be infringed by VP8, which Google purchased and is offering for free...


Bottom line, it might be advisable for John and others to look at the server and encoding solutions that are being used to run the OTT services.

I do remember the first time I saw some 16:9 720x480 content.
It was a trailer for "Batman Forever" with Val Kilmer back in
1995 when I was working at C-Cube. Warner had sent them
a D1 tape and it was just the most gorgeous looking SD that
I had seen up till then.

Yup. Getting rid of interlace is HUGE.

Once you take that major step (and eliminating stupidity like 59.94 fields per second), you can move up and down the resolution scale with ease, delivering content at multiple resolutions to satisfy the resolution requirements of the many screens that deliver video to consumers.

All of this was known in the early '90s. Let's give credit where it is due. The broadcast industry and their equipment suppliers have used MPEG-2 to control their turf very effectively.

I doubt, however, that this is going to become ANOTHER 50 year standard.


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