Tips on DCP resolutions and some other things

edit 4
Summary:
DCPs uses these standard resolutions:
2K Flat 1.85: 1 1998×1080
2K Scope 2.39:1 2048×858
4K Flat 1.85: 3996 x 2160
4K Scope 2.39: 4096 x 1716
-Getting the resolution correct is important.
-Flat and Scope are the standard presets in all cinemas.
-1.78:1 (16/9) and 2.35:1 films can get image artifacts (trapezoid shape) in the cinema because the standard side masking presets are made for 1.85 and 2.39.
-Scope films are projected wider than Flat films in a common height cinema.
-A 4K DCP is compatible with 2K and 4K projectors.
-Full container (C) 2048×1080/4096×2160 is not used by Hollywood feature films. Films made with these resolutions will probably be projected in Flat with cropping on the sides at most cinemas.

edit 3: This post is a bit technical. Basically what I am saying is that you will lose pixels in both constant height and constant width cinemas if you don’t use either a Flat 1998×1080 or a Scope 2048×858 resolution when making a DCP. In some cinemas 1920×1080 can’t be masked on the sides and you will loose some perceived contrast but you will not lose any pixels.

 

Posted this at a webforum:

HD workflows where the 1920×1080 container of HDCAM-SR tape is standard should be changed to 2K workflows for digital cinema work.

The 1.78 aspect 1920×1080 fits ok, but 1.85 or 2.39 inside a 1920×1080 container does not fit.

The RED 2K 2:1 2048×1024 resolution does fit the 2.39 digital cinema presets with cropping to 2048×858 (if this was intended when shooting), but to get to the 1.85 digital cinema preset you have to crop and scale to get to 1998×1080.

1920×1080 1.77 material can have black padding on the sides to achieve 1998×1080 or be scaled and cropped. Digital cinema servers can play 1920×1080 but the standard is 1998×1080 so it is preferable.

The reason that 1080 material fits better than 1024 material is that the side masking can be adjusted in a constant height cinema. I would recommend padding to 1998×1080.

If all the 2048×1024 information is vital, scale to a 1998×1080 container, but remember that having this much black padding above and below the picture kills the contrast.

The main problem when making 24 fps DCPs from 25 fps material, even with software like time factory 2 which keeps the channels in phase and keeps the pitch, is that they could alter the sound mix in the conversion process and introduce artifacts. If you slow down the sound you get a pitch change. So being able to play 25 fps DCPs on the doremi cinema server is great.

I did use the openjpeg encoder first to make DCPs but found it too slow for time critical use.

The biggest problem with mastering DCPs is the Quality Control stage. The best option is to check it where it will be played, if you get a DCP made or checked at a post house make sure they know what they are doing and tell them exactly what you want and what equipment the DCP will be played on.

edit: Answered a comment about DCP resolution:

All digital cinema projectors have one preset for Flat (1998×1080) and Scope (2048×858).
In a constant height theatre the resolution, the side masking and zoom changes when projecting the two presets.

The flat preset has 1080 pixels in height, the Scope preset has 858 pixels in height.
When going from Flat to Scope the lens zooms and the masking widens.
The pixels beyond 858 would have hit above the screen if they were not masked in the projector.

The flat preset has 1998 pixels in length, the Scope preset has 2048 pixels in length.
When screening 2048×858 in Flat the pixels beyond 1998 is masked in the projector and the image is letterboxed.

That is why you have to scale 2048×1024 down to fit the Flat preset or crop it to fit the Scope preset even though 2K is 2048×1080.

You should always avoid black padding/letterboxing, it kills the contrast.
That is why 1998×080 or 2048×858 should be your target.

It seems you have been to a constant width theatre where Scope is much smaller than Flat. This is a terrible solution. But the common width theatre could also just have presets for Scope and Flat. Those should always be your targets.

edit 2: Answered another comment about why you are going to loose pixels when using 2048 x1080 resolution.

At this lens searcher website (link is down) you can see that projectors and masking is programmed with a minimum of Scope and Flat presets and that theatres are either constant height or constant width:

 

You can also see that some cinemas have both side and top masking. A constant height theatre could also have top masking so theoretically a 2:1 ratio film in a Flat container could be masked. Presets for masking 1.33:1 and 1.78:1 is common. 2048 x 1080 will not fit any of the presets. A custom preset could be made in a constant height theatre if you program the side masking to go a little further than flat and remove the option to mask away pixels beyond 1998 in the projector. In a constant width theatre the custom preset could be programmed to use the same zoom as the scope preset, remove the masking of pixels beyond 858 in the projector and make a custom top masking.

How to use Open Source DCP tools to change the sound in a DCP (or make a DCP)

Outdated post: You can now open DCPs and change the picture and sound in Easydcp Creator.

I sometimes use the command line tool asdcp-test from Cinecert to change the sound in a DCP instead of making a new DCP from scratch in Easydcp Creator. This comes in handy if the DCP takes 8 hours to make and you are screening the movie in 2 hours and the sound must be changed. Another option is to encode the jpeg2000 sequence seperately in easydcp creator + or extract the jpeg2000 sequence with Easydcp Player or asdcp-test, then you can make change sound or subtitles and make a new DCP in Easydcp fast. You could also make a complete DCP with free tools like asdcp-test and opendcp.

To compile asdcp-test yourself:
Source for asdcp-test/ASDCPLIB:
http://www.cinecert.com

There are also some old binaries for Windows of acdcp-test, Openjpeg and opencinematools here:
http://code.google.com/p/opencinematools/

You can use http://code.google.com/p/opendcp/ instead of opencinematools. It includes Color space conversion.

To change the sound in a DCP:

Copy the compiled asdcp-test files to /usr/local/

Generate 4 GUID
with e.g. http://www.guidgenerator.com/online-guid-generator.aspx

Keep the movie mxf file with the jpeg2000 sequence from the first DCP and name it with the first GUID: 5f243728-ef5b-42ca-bad7-47b59b2aea01.jp2k.mxf

Then make a new sound MXF and name it with the second GUID: 47365f11-3a45-4f77-8389-f4a145aa232b.pcm.MXF with the 24 bit 48 khz wav sound files in this order: L,R,C,LFE,Ls,Rs.

/usr/local/bin/asdcp-test -p 24 -L -l 5.1 -c 47365f11-3a45-4f77-8389-f4a145aa232b.pcm.mxf sound.L.wav sound.R.wav sound.C.wav sound.LFE.wav sound.Ls.wav sound.Rs.wav

Then make the new metadata with opendcp
Use http://digitalcinemanamingconvention.com/

Update:
You may also use the windows software DCPC to make the CPL and PKL files metadata files.

Copy and paste these with the correct names to a bash script
or execute each command manually in terminal in the folder with the mxf files

Start the Bash script with
#!/bin/sh
and use .sh in the filename, e.g. makedcp.sh

Execute it the folder with mxf files with the terminal command sh makedcp.sh
or execute each command manually in terminal in the folder with the mxf files.

This is the updated commands I used to make a 25 fps DCP:

Use terminal or make shell scripts that run these commands:
/usr/local/bin/image_to_j2k -cinema2K 24 -ImgDir foldername with Gamma and colorspace converted TIFF sequence/ -OutFor j2c

/usr/local/bin/asdcp-test -p 25 -L -c movie.jp2k.mxf foldername with jpeg2000 sequence

/usr/local/bin/asdcp-test -p 25 -L -l 5.1 -c movie.pcm.mxf folderwith5.1sound/sound.L.wav folderwith5.1sound/sound.R.wav folderwith5.1sound/sound.C.wav folderwith5.1sound/sound.LFE.wav folderwith5.1sound/sound.Ls.wav folderwith5.1sound/sound.Rs.wav

use opendcp or dcpc to package the dcp.

This how it was done in Opencinematools
/usr/local/bin/mkcpl --kind feature --title test25 --annotation test25 movie.jp2k.mxf movie.pcm.mxf > movie.cpl.xml

/usr/local/bin/mkpkl --issuer KESE --annotation test25 movie.jp2k.mxf movie.pcm.mxf movie.cpl.xml > mymovie.pkl.xml

/usr/local/bin/mkmap --issuer KESE movie.jp2k.mxf movie.pcm.mxf movie.cpl.xml mymovie.pkl.xml

How to make a SMPTE 25 fps (or 30,50,60 fps) DCP (Digital Cinema Package) with Fraunhofer Easydcp 1.4

UPDATE: In Easydcp 2.0 you can make DCPs from (Prores 422) Quicktime files. Prores 422 exported from Color do not get darker.

Tested a 25 SMPTE DCP made with Fraunhofer Easydcp Creator 1.3 beta on a Doremi DCP-2000 cinema server. It worked, I am not sure if all cinema servers supports 25 fps SMPTE DCPs yet. I know the Doremi and Sony does. Update: Have also tested a 30 fps DCP on a Doremi DCP-2000. It also worked. But it may not work on all projectors. To convert the sound in a 29.97 (no inverse telecine) video file to 30 fps you could use the cinema tools tips from this post:
How to make dpx and wav files that can be converted to a DCP (Digital Cinema Package) with Fraunhofer EasyDCP Creator using Final Cut Studio 2 or 3

Links:

Fraunhofer Easydcp Creator

Final Cut Studio 3 with Apple Color and Soundtrack Pro (Discontinued in 2011)

Note: Check that the DPX sequence from Color matches your monitor. You may have to compensate that the picture gets darker.

Update: To export a DPX sequence from After Effects follow this step by step guide.
In Apple Color:

To export a image sequence from Apple Color you have to work with a supported file format like Prores 422 HQ.
MPEG Streamclip is good tool to convert file formats like VOB, WMV, MPEG to Prores 422 HQ.
MPEG streamclip

MPEG streamclip can also do a quick deinterlacing if the clip is interlaced.
Alternative deinterlacers are:
JES deinterlacer, Final Cut/Compressor, Color, Adobe After Effects.

To convert a WMV file you have to have Flip4mac WMV player Pro:

Step 1.

Export a TIFF or DPX image sequence Hopefully from an 10 or 16 bit application like Apple Color or Adobe After Effects. Quicktime Pro 7 is as far I know not capable of more than 8 bit.
Note: Check that the DPX sequence from Color matches your monitor. You may have to compensate that the picture gets darker.

In Apple Color:
Import shot. I let Color match the timeline to the clip. This way the framerate will be the same as the clip.

Change the Project Settings
Render File type: DPX
Width and Height : All DCI digital cinemas have two presets:
Scope (2.39:1) = 2048 x 858 and
Flat (1.85:1) = 1998 x 1080. HD
(1.77:1) 1920 x 1080 will fit inside the Flat preset with perhaps some empty space on the sides.
I let Color scale my clip to the preset.

Broadcast Safe: If you turn this off you will see in the RGB parade scope if material is graded with values above 100 and below 0. The material should be graded so black is not below 0 and white is not above 100. Everything below and above will be clipped. If you turn broadcast safe on everything will be forced inside the legal 0-100 values.

Choose a render folder with a lot of free space. Each frame is about 8 mb.

Sometimes you want to fix the geometry. Scope film inside a HD container (1920×800) will have to be zoomed and RED (2:1) material in 2048 x 1024 does not fit either of the presets.

Example: zooming in on a scope film inside a HD container. Choose 2048×858 in project setting and zoom in on the Geometry tab.
Remember to check that the project has the correct framerate.

Finally you want to export the image sequence:
In the Render Queue. click on the the clip, click add selected and start render. Then the start render button will turn into rendering,

Step 2.

Make the sound files

Drag the video file to a multitrack project in Apple Soundtrack Pro

Click on the sound to highlight it and export it (cmd + e)
Use these settings:
Exported Items: Selected
File Type: Wave File
Create multiple mono files
Bit depth: 24 bit
Sample Rate: 48 kHz

Watch out that you have not just selected a part of the sound.

Step 3

Make the DCP

Start Fraunhofer Easydcp 1.4

Choose a Project name
2K
uncheck “Use interop instead of SMPTE packing”
Choose framerate 25 fps
and Create

Add picture track

Choose the first DPX image from the Color render to select the image sequence

Add sound track

Use the sound files from Soundtrack Pro export

 

Drop the track files in the new reel window.

Give the project a name and double click the perforation to the right of the name input field to edit the composition settings. Choose content type, eg. Feature or Trailer.
Choose a annotation text
Choose a Content title,

uncheck Options – Automatic pillarboxing -/letterboxing.. If you have a valid resolution.

Check that the frame numbers match and click the Generate DCP button.

Sometimes the frame count is off, but this can be fixed with the offset option.