EditShare Updates QScan Automated for Video QC Compliance and Analysis
EditShare’s new version of its Qscan automated QC software for video includes new Comparative Analysis content testing functionality, DCP visualisation and support for Open EXR files. Qscan is used to run quality checks on video characteristics ranging from picture structure to IMF packages and audio loudness, to Dolby Vision HDR compliance and verification. This new update connects natively to EditShare EFS shared storage systems and makes it easier for users to automate comprehensive testing of media files during any stage of the creative process.
“The fact that the number and diversity of media distribution targets continues to grow means that file compliance is more important now. Traditionally, the automated quality control process that ensures your files meet compliance guidelines runs during the final stage of a project and is handled by an engineer who can configure the test patterns and read the results. While this will flag errors and prevent a bad file hand off, it is not efficient, especially if the errors are at the beginning of your production,” said Sunil Mudholkar, vice president of product, EditShare.
“You will need to unravel and recreate a portion of your project, which can be time-consuming and costly. Using Qscan, an editor, colourist, supervisor or even an assistant can check the file integrity throughout the lifecycle of the file, catching the issues at the point they appear, saving time and money.”
The new Comparative Analysis testing reveals context surrounding the changes made to a file after testing, shortening the amount of time the user spends confirming that the file is ready for delivery. At a glance, users can see what changes were made to the file compared to the original, and the timeline view also gives more context on when the changes were made.
Support for EXR and TIFF sequences
QScan can natively connect with EditShare EFS Media Spaces now as well, which allows it to pull and automatically check content directly from a desired project space located on the EFS engineered media node. EditShare storage is organised on the EFS parallel distributed file system. Files written to EFS are divided into small units and, if users have multiple storage nodes, the units are distributed or striped across a group of nodes so that more than one node contributes to the read or write speed of a given file.
Furthermore, users can assign media spaces to a specific set of nodes and define how the files in the media space are protected. QScan reports can then be delivered back to the same project space, confirming if content has passed the desired AQC settings. Content can be checked at every stage, from ingest, audio, editorial to VFX, to grading and finishing, without the content leaving the project located on the EFS media-aware node.
The new Quick Analysis option, which generates instant feedback on the integrity of files, is used to start an analysis just by choosing a pre-designed template and selecting a file or files. Eliminating extra steps, this new option removes the need to create a new project first, although that method still works. Instead, once the user selects a template and his files , a new Quick Analysis project will be created, taking its name from the selected template.
For loudness checking, users are now able to select an offset for loudness measurements, helping broadcasters adhere more easily to legal regulations. They also have a new Mean Audio Phase tool that finds the average of the audio phase across the whole file, allowing just one value per audio channel. The user can select what channels to compare when adding the threshold, and then make sure the stereo audio file is correctly built for delivery.
Support for the OpenEXR open-source high dynamic range image file format make compliance testing capabilities more relevant for VFX facilities. OpenEXR files store high-quality, multi-depth images. Because they may use lossless or lossy compression, support numerous layers and hold a high luminance range and colour, they can be complex to test. Qscan makes it more straightforward for facilities to verify that files are compliant.
Greymeta Iris reference player for Qscan visualisation
DCP and HDR Workflows
Digital Cinema Packages are also complex, visualised in a tree chart display similar to IMF packages. QScan’s new visual interface helps users identify key digital files that comprise the packages and verify quickly that the correct digital cinema audio, image and data files are present and data streams are correctly coded at the time of handoff.
For Dolby Vision HDR workflows, QScan now reads sidecar XML files directly so that users no longer need to embed HDR information in the video file. During the workflow, the video file and the sidecar XML both go through all production stages, and HDR data is only embedded on final delivery of the Dolby Vision file in J2K.
It is now possible to take the test results from QScan and visualise them in real time with reference player Graymeta Iris, software that plays back encoded and mastered content. Errors that QScan detects are shown in the Iris timeline and can be ranked by their severity.
At IBC2019, see the latest version of EditShare QScan running as part of the EFS 2020 shared storage and the integrated Flow 2020 media asset management workflow. www.editshare.com