The 2009 Analog Shut Off. The NBC Network Uses and Supports: Aspect ratio control – Active Format Description Conforming to SMPTE 2016, AFD has been working actively at 30 Rock starting with the HD launch of SNL to control the aspect ratio of the SD down-conversion of commercials for the show
The aspect ratio of the active video area is 16:9; when associated with a 4:3-coded frame, the active video is top-justified.
• Active video area is 16:9; when associated with a 4:3 coded frame, the active video is centered vertically.
• Active video area is 4:3; when associated with a 16:9 coded frame, the active video is centered horizontally.
• Active video area exceeds 16:9 aspect ratio; active video is centered vertically (in whatever coded frame is used).
• Active video area is 14:9; when associated with a 4:3-coded frame, active video is centered vertically; when associated with a 16:9 coded frame, it is centered horizontally.
In addition to AFD, ATSC defined another data structure-bar data-also for use in the video elementary stream. While the AFD gives a general view of the relationship between the coded frame and the geometry of the active video within it, bar data is able to indicate precisely the number of lines of black video at the top and bottom of a letterboxed image, or the number of black pixels at the left and right side of a pillar-boxed image.
For the ATSC system, AFD and/or bar data are included in video user data whenever the rectangular picture area containing useful information does not extend to the full height or width of the coded frame. Such data may optionally also be included in user data when the rectangular picture area containing useful information extends to the full height and width of the coded frame.
16:9 HD w/center cut AFD
AFD:Letterbox or Centercut data set by the provider is distributed in the VANC
Network Distribution to
Cable & DBS
The Tonight Show
Accurately displays in 4:3
How Many Screens?
no issue………… X
?direct feedX X
?direct feedX -
- - X
HDTV – OTA, Cable, DBS
DBS / Cable Digital SD
OTA analog – “converter box”
new reality – consumer has “final say”
potentially solved by agreement w Operator
new reality – nonuniformity
Dialnorm:NBCU Audio soundtracks match dialnorm metadata from the network and from the DTV station
A company wide initiative is underway to provide our Stations with the best possible format and aspect ratio conversion in cooperation with Cable & DBS operators
Direct from station fiber connectivity
Over-the-air ATSC reception with AFD
A request for information has been issued with manufacturers for inclusion of AFD and Dolby Digital Dynamic Range profiles for professional ATSC receivers / IRDs
In an interim measure, the NBCU September 2008 HDTV Content Technical Specification will recommend “center-cut safe” to program providers. This recommendation will be superseded when 16:9 displays and AFD reach market saturation
1.) Where are you in the transition?
2.) What’s been resolved?
3.) What’s remaining?
4.) What should the industry know?
5.) What should industry and gov’t be doing?