Published on Saturday, 17 November 2012 23:40
Written by Donn Gurule
4K and 8K Production Workflows Become More Mainstream
HD is showing its age with the newly-minted 4K Ultra HD standard effectively quadrupling standard HD's footprint, and an experimental new 8K format is weighing in at 16 times the resolution of regular HD, creating unprecendented technical challenges for studios.
The future of content delivery is changing, and rapidly. Our job is to make sure that our clients are competitive against other studios so they can continue to not only win contracts for newer bigger projects, but to have everyone enjoy the benefit of the result -- Big, beautiful high resolution footage to dazzle the audience.
4K and 8K production is not just a minor improvement; it is a significant change in the way audiences will enjoy content. It also requires a very carefully thought out process of upgrading your pipeline. Fortunately, we have been thinking about this for years.
It is very natural for a (smart) studio (even the biggest ones) to have an open and honest conversation on what objectives they are looking for, but to also talk about their limitations. The most valuable conversations I have had are when studios are honest and tell us what they don't know, so we can give them some feedback based on installations we have worked with in the past.
Making the jump to 4K and 8K production also may involve stereoscopy and high frame rates. Creating a stereo workflow doubles the footprint of either the 4K or 8K standard, and doubling the frame rate from 24 to (say) 48 frames per second will also double it. Think about it if a studio wanted to create an 8K feature with stereoscopy and a high frame rate! That could really keep studio owners up at night.
So, if you calculate say an 8K uncompressed stream in stereo at 24 frames per second (FPS), your requirements might look like this: 4K frame (approximately 50 MB) times 24 frames per second (FPS) times two for 3D stereo. That means you need about of 2,400 megabytes per second to see it. Fourty-eight FPS would be 4,800 MB/s in 4K stereo.
I feel we have been leading in the creation of these solutions. We have a brand new storage product that deals with storage size, latency issues when delegating assets to many nodes simultaneously, and provides genuine data security and full data protection