AVS Forum Special Member
Join Date: May 2006
Location: New York / California
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Hello AVS Forum Members,
I head up the small Independent Label that released CHRONOS. There seems to be a lot of confusion involving CHRONOS ... our first HD Release ... but not our last.
Bottom line, for those that don't like to read, the current HD-DVD Format and HD-DVD Players are not capable of anything but 1080i output. Our CHRONOS release is encoded from the 1080/24P Source, same as our BD Version, but HD-DVD only outputs 1080i. In my opinion, until the day comes when HD-DVD can read and output a native 1080/24p file...it will not be capable of true 1080/24p output.
Regarding the overall 1080i or 1080p issue, the HD-DVD specifications only support 1080i at this point in time. There are discussions about adding support for 1080p for higher performance profile players, but this has not been decided yet.
CHRONOS was encoded from the 1080/24p source. The lab then needed to add 2:3 cadence flags to comply with HD-DVD Specifications. The 2nd generation Toshiba player does support 1080p output, but it will not be 24p output. The content on the disc would still have the cadence flags, which technically makes it 1080i. However, as the specs are right now, it's left to the player whether it outputs the content as interlaced or uses the progressive frames and ignores the flags or does any other conversions.
The fact remains the same, the specifications for HD-DVD do not allow for native 24 frames per second. The cadence information has to be included in the file - so to speak as metadata. As I mentioned previously, if the player chooses to ignore these flags, this is an implementers choice. However, although converting from 1080/24p to 1080i does not require an encode, the stream is still being "processed" (by the Player) re-flowing the 2:3 cadence and removing the progressive_sequence_flags. From this perspective, it is technically not a 24p stream anymore.
In any case, the stream on CHRONOS does have the same format as most discs out there. The frames are still encoded as progressive and if a player ignores the metadata, they will be displayed as progressive.
To summarize, both the HD-DVD and Blu-ray Disc (BD) versions of CHRONOS come from the same 1080p24 Master. This master was created from the original 65mm Film Elements and transferred at Crest National under the supervision of Ron Fricke ... the original Director / Cinematographer. Everyone involved worked diligently to restore and color correct the original film elements to assure the best possible image quality.
R&B Films also hired Michael Stearns, the original Composer, do a complete remix of the CHRONOS soundtrack optimized for a smaller Home Theater environment. We remixed the film score after going back to the original 2" Reel to Reel Analog Masters and having them transferred at Todd-AO Sound Studios to 96/24 using the best ADAC's available.
I have worked as a Producer / Director for 30 years and a Record / Video Industry professional for 15 of those years. In my opinion, the amount of time and resources invested in to bringing CHRONOS to HD is far above and beyond what is typical for a special interest non-fiction film of this type.
I hope those that have yet to see this title in HD will do so, as it is a stunning example of what HD-DVD and BD is capable of from a film source.
I hope this resolves the confusion about CHRONOS on HD-DVD and BD and sheds some light on the topic of 1080i and 1080/24p in general.
Richard J. Casey
R&B Films, Ltd.
I like to think of R&B as more than a label; it's a gallery for fine art in the fields of audio and video programming. And the only reason to have a gallery, in my opinion, is to fill it with masterpieces.
Richard J. Casey, President
Richard J. Casey
Disney WOW - World of Wonder
Producers Guild of America, New Media Council
(BD Industry Insider)