DPP and SMPTE Launch IMF for Broadcast and Online Specification


The Digital Production Partnership (DPP) and Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers (SMPTE) have released a new technical specification to support the mastering and international exchange of content, titled SMPTE TSP 2121:2018 IMF Application DPP (ProRes). The new specification builds on the existing Interoperable Master Format (IMF) standard that SMPTE developed to simplify the distribution of feature film content.

“The wider global market for quality content has brought new opportunities for media companies by creating demand for different versions of master material. But that also brings cost and complexity,” said DPP Managing Director Mark Harrison. “That’s the problem that IMF solves: it enables faster, cheaper and higher quality versioning. It brings financial and operational benefits brought by reduced storage and improved flexibility and tracking.”
IMF Application DPP (ProRes) makes it possible to automate the content supply chain, eliminate the unnecessary creation of multiple versions, enable workflow efficiencies and reduce QC and archive storage requirements, while maintaining the quality of the original asset. The result is potential cost and time savings.

TSP 2121:2018  is the first SMPTE Technical Specification (TSP). TSPs are a new series of proactive documents to complement SMPTE Standards and address rapidly evolving industry techniques and workflows. The creation of SMPTE Technical Specifications (TSPs) are expected to enable industry groups and business users, such as the DPP, to constrain standards to enable new workflows and international interoperability.

The DPP have worked with the EBU (European Broadcasting Union), NABA (North American Broadcasters Association) and the IMF User Group to create the specification, which is available to view here. “Specifications are part of SMPTE’s new future” said Bruce Devlin, SMPTE Standards Vice President, “With IMF Application DPP (ProRes) we are starting a new chapter in SMPTE’s activities to encourage global interoperability, and to foster the emergence of new and stable technologies.”

“An impressive level of industry collaboration has been involved in the creation of this specification.” said Rowan de Pomerai, DPP Head of Delivery & Growth, “IMF Application DPP (ProRes) will have a significant impact on how television and online content is sold and exchanged.”
Following the publication of the specification, the DPP will launch a compliance testing programme for IMF for Broadcast and Online tools. This will provide buyers and sellers with the confidence that DPP tested tools and IMF packages will be interoperable and can be exchanged globally.

The launch of the technical specification follows the release of The Business Benefits of IMF to support the DPP’s broadcaster, supplier and distributor Members in the adoption of IMF Application DPP (ProRes). It is available to DPP Members here. The DPP will continue to work with partners to ensure that the IMF specification is implemented globally, providing support for the production and post communities as they migrate to IMF deliveries.  digitalproductionpartnership.co.uk