Industry Perspectives and Opinions

Periodically we publish opinion pieces to provide a perspective on a particular hot industry topic. Experts share their insights and provide another view into complex topics of the day.  In the future, we hope to expand this program to include moderated feedback so that readers can join the conversation.  If you would like us to cover a particular topic in a future Industry Insight, send a message to Dianne Purrier.

The views and opinions expressed in these articles are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the position of the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers - SMPTE.

Making Mobile TV a Reality - By Thomas Edwards

This paper was originally presented at the 2013 HPA Tech Retreat, February 18 – 22.

The past few years have seen pioneering work in the development and delivery of digital television signals to mobile devices. Broadcasters throughout the U.S. are using the broadcast spectrum to provide content, including live local and national news, sports and entertainment programming, to a growing number of portable devices. In establishing these services and supporting systems, broadcasters faced a variety of challenges.  The following paper discusses the lessons learned through this process and provides insight that may inform future launches of mobile DTV services.

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Automating QC for Language and Captions - By Michael Goldman


This paper was originally presented at the 2013 HPA Tech Retreat, February 18 – 22.

On a digital broadcast landscape littered with multiple channels, platforms, devices, formats, delivery options, and most importantly, raw data, the issue of how to most efficiently apply closed captions, subtitles, languages, and other metadata to different versions is a problem that has grown exponentially in recent years. Literally millions of files, possibly billions, directly related to online broadcasting applications are traveling through servers and into consumer homes each day, with individual assets potentially having dozens of mezzanine files associated with them for different versions and languages. Now, the FCC has applied stricter rules regarding the captioning of Internet video, directly impacting the requirements for distributing such video over IP networks. 

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X-Curve Is Not An EQ Curve - By Michael Karagosian

A commonly misunderstood tool in cinema sound is the X-Curve. The very name suggests it has something to do with equalization of the sound track. In fact, it has nothing to do with soundfield equalization. Far from it, X-Curve describes a measurement method designed to allow the setup of a cinema sound system to match the sound heard by the director in the mixing room.
To understand X-Curve measurements, it’s important to understand the challenges of equalizing cinemas. The most prominent mechanisms that influence the sound of an auditorium are the loudspeaker characteristics, room reverberation, acoustical
reflections in the room, and the absorption of sound by air. The primary tool by which we attempt to overcome the audible artifacts introduced by these mechanisms is the equalizer. Unfortunately, even a finely adjustable equalizer is not a match to the complex acoustical anomalies that can occur. But some correction is possible, and it is that which we pursue.


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