Corporate Video Production - Deon van Zyl - Showreel
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Digital Cinema Encoding

Contact me for Converting Video to Cinema Format to enable playback of aTV Commercial in cinema   :  

+27 (83) 441 37​16​ (GMT +2)   |

I am an Approved Service Provider to Ster Kinekor in South Africa to encode video material to cinema  format.

​​​I offer encoding to DIGITAL CINEMA Format with 5.1 sound, spec'd to international cinema LUFS standard .

Any video material needs to be encoded before it can be ingested into a cinema projector for screening.

'Digital Cinema Projectors' use a  very different format than normal video formats we are used to and is not a format that can be played back on a tv or computer without aquiring  costly previewing software.

Encoding is a complex process and should not be underestimated. Resorting to using 'quick' fixes almost always result in playback errors in a cinema environment, especially in 3D cinemas.

Before encoding can begin we need to prepare the picture and audio files seperately :



​The process starts by grading the colour for cinema. The amount of grading depends largely on the colour space used in the capturing of the original footage. Typical video colour space would be RGB or Rec709. This needs to be converted to XYZ colour space for cinema and typically adjusting the Gamma to 1 from 0.8 inherent to a Rec 709 colour space.  

Once the material has been colour corrected, it is converted into a sequence of 'still' images (can be anything between 600 - 700 images for a 30 sec ad) in order to create a JPEG2000 sequence which we can then insert into a wrapper which will become the picture source for the projector.  It is far better if these sequences are rendered straight out of Resolve for example, at up to 250Mbps. 

The original image needs to be converted from say Full HD or 4K video to a 2K Flat image. This means that the video frame size needs to be cropped to meet the new picture dimensions. Converting from Full HD video to 2K will imply that some upscaling does occur during which some quality loss will  be inevitable.

In addition, it is required to cut excess frames from the video to meet the international standard for cinema, failing which will more than likely corrupt the 'master image' used in 3D cinemas. 


​Now the audio track is converted to cinema standard. It is very important that the frame rate of the audio matches the picture exactly or else the picture and sound will move further out of sync during playback in the cinema. When audio is slowed down to cinema standard, the pitch needs to be raised to compensate for the change in frame rate. Now the audio needs to be mastered into 6 tracks for distribution to 6 channels during encoding. Each track needs to be very carefully monitored and is tested to ensure compliance to the correct international standard for cinema. This process ensures playback at correct audio levels in the cinema, anywhere in the world.


​We are now ready to start the encoding process. 6 Files are generated, including a playlist, packing list as well as the audio and picture files, amongst others. During encoding, the audio tracks are allocated to the 6 channels in the 5.1 surround sound system used in the cinemas. At this point it is also critical to check that the audio and picture are perfectly syncronised.

Encoding also entails generating a title, which uses a standard naming convention to label the different attributes such as parental guidance ratings, subtitles, language etc.  in the correct order and format.  This does not imply simply 'typing' the title to the correct format, but instead using a 'title generator' to pull the attributes into the title in the correct order so that the projector can ingest these correctly.

Many cinemas will reject the entire package if it does not conform to the correct naming convention.​