THX Partners with BluFocus to Develop 3D Blu-ray Best Practices
THX Ltd. has teamed with BluFocus, a quality assurance and advanced testing facility for the home entertainment industry, to build an ecosystem of services to address the technical challenges of 3D post-production. THX-BluFocus 3D certification sets authoring and production guidelines and testing procedures for evaluating 3D Audio-Video quality, 3D Blu-ray disc and player Interoperability, and the physiological effects of 3D on home viewers.
“The long-term success of 3D in the home depends heavily on content producers and consumer electronics manufacturers delivering a comfortable and compelling experience for today’s first wave of consumer adopters,” said Rick Dean, senior vice president at THX. “Our partnership with BluFocus complements the work THX is doing with leading HDTV manufacturers and other industry organizations to drive standards for 3D visual quality and usability.”
One of the biggest reported concerns among consumers is experiencing fatigue from 3D video and glasses. THX and BluFocus are researching root causes of viewer fatigue to better understand the physiological effects of 3D. The goal is to work closely with content producers to implement best practices and guidelines for all 3D elements, including onscreen characters, objects, graphics and subtitles. THX-BluFocus certification also evaluates how 2D-to-3D conversion adds depth to the picture, and whether this added depth results in creative errors or flaws that deviate from the storyline or causes viewer fatigue.
“The added dimension of 3D brings with it more technical challenges than traditional 2D post-production and authoring, and requires more steps in the production chain,” said Paulette Pantoja, CEO of BluFocus. “The certification program we are creating with THX will help refine 3D post-production and authoring and help content producers minimize technical flaws long before 3D content is broadcast, streamed or authored on optical disc.”
During the THX-BluFocus 3D AV certification process, engineers analyze Left and Right Eye images frame-by-frame to ensure they retain the sharpness and detail of the original master video elements. All audio material is also fully evaluated to make sure they meet studio Reference Level and remain faithful to the master recordings. In addition to focusing on 3D Audio-Video quality, THX-BluFocus certification also evaluates Blu-ray Disc and Blu-ray player interoperability to ensure they play seamlessly together.
THX-BluFocus 3D Certification Categories
THX-BluFocus certification will be offered to the producers and distributors of movies, television programs, games and other content. When shopping for a 3D Blu-ray Disc or digital download, consumers will be instructed to look for the following THX-BluFocus certification logo and icons on disc packaging and digital artwork.
THX-BluFocus AV Certification – The THX-BluFocus AV certification indicates that all of the sound and images have been analyzed to ensure they maintain the quality and detail of the original master elements.
THX-BluFocus Creative Certification – The THX-BluFocus Creative certification indicates that all 3D elements in the feature presentation have been analyzed to detect any creative errors and flaws that deviate from the director’s intent or may cause viewer fatigue. Subtitles, menus, graphics and other elements may also be reviewed.
THX-BluFocus Interoperability – THX-BluFocus Interoperability certification applies to Blu-ray Discs to ensure they play seamlessly on 2D and 3D Blu-ray Players from many major consumer electronics brands. More than 100 Blu-ray Players, from different regions, are evaluated with each THX-BluFocus Certified Disc to deliver a hassle-free user experience.
BluFocus Inc. is the entertainment industry's first advanced testing and advisory service specialist for Blu-ray. The company offers products and services to content owners, player manufacturers, content developers and tool developers to ensure a seamless, issue-free customer experience that makes full use of Blu-ray Disc's expanded capabilities which include BD-J, BD-Live and now 3D. BluFocus has recently expanded into the Digital Distribution and Broadcast areas to offer the same quality services and expertise they have proven with Blu-ray and DVD.
About THX, Ltd.
Founded by George Lucas and recognized by audiences around the globe, THX is synonymous with the design and certification of world-class cinemas, premium audio systems, HDTVs, and blockbuster movies and games. Products featuring THX defy convention and define quality in their class, whether in the cinema, home or on the road. For more information, visit www.thx.com. Become a THX Facebook Fan and get THX Tech Tips, Fan Videos and more. Go to Facebook and search “THX Ltd.”