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#1 Glenn Hanns

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Posted 27 July 2006 - 02:35 AM

Hi,
Ive been asked to originate a TV program on digibeta and the distributers (WB) have asked for the project to be delivered on DLT-R format. Does anyone know what this is?
Cheers,
Glenn Hanns
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#2 Kai.w

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Posted 27 July 2006 - 04:36 AM

Hi,
Ive been asked to originate a TV program on digibeta and the distributers (WB) have asked for the project to be delivered on DLT-R format. Does anyone know what this is?
Cheers,
Glenn Hanns

Hmm.... DLT is a data tape format that exists in various sizes (20, 40, 80, etc. GB) what the -R stands for I don't know. It was quite popular as a data backup solution. I might be wrong but I think DTF took its place.
Bigger post houses might have a drive...

-k
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#3 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 27 July 2006 - 05:17 AM

Hi,

The data tape format o-the-moment is LTO3.

It's designed to have cross-manufacturer compatibility, which few others do; obviously, this enhances survivability in the future.

Phil
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#4 Michael Most

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Posted 27 July 2006 - 09:11 AM

Hi,
Ive been asked to originate a TV program on digibeta and the distributers (WB) have asked for the project to be delivered on DLT-R format. Does anyone know what this is?
Cheers,
Glenn Hanns


If you're delivering for DVD mastering, this is a very common delivery format. For anything else, it's a very strange request indeed, because there is no standard specified for the information to be written.
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#5 Alessandro Machi

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Posted 28 July 2006 - 05:16 PM

If you're delivering for DVD mastering, this is a very common delivery format. For anything else, it's a very strange request indeed, because there is no standard specified for the information to be written.


They are kind of asking you to be the production company AND then do the distribution dirty work that they don't want to do themselves. They don't want to hassle with the glass mastering step and are dropping it into your lap. This DLT step could end up costing you well over a thousand dollars to as much as several thousand dollars above and beyond the digital betacam mastering step you are already taking.

It's a two way street I guess, what is being said is a tape master is no longer enough, however it's crazy to make you pay for the DLT step, that's their responsibility. You're being put into a very dangerous financial situation where you could make the DLT, a glass master would then be made, and then have to be remade because they find a glitch somewhere, or claim you did some tiny thing wrong, and you have to incur additional costs as well.

A separate budget needs to be created for the DLT step, and then if you want to try your hand at it, good luck. If you can successfully get through the DLT step, you probably will create a niche for yourself and it may turn out that you get a lot more work because you can handle production requests above and beyond mere tape delivery.

I'm just concerned that you are being required to do something that was not accounted for when you submitted your budget proposal.
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#6 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 28 July 2006 - 06:25 PM

Hi,

I must admit that I had no idea DLT was used for DVD mastering - the productions I've been involved with have all been small enough to supply a DVD-video disc imaged onto another DVD data disc. I had some hazy impression that some sort of tape was in use but I've never done it.

That said, our correspondent is right. You are getting the standard "Oh, and can you just put it onto a DVD for me?" run-around. Clients do this to me all the time, and I'm not surprised to find that the high end try to pull it off as well. They talk about making web versions and DVDs like it's a simple dubbing operation. It ain't.

This comes under Section 4, Subsection 10c of Phil's Rules for Media Work, "Beware Clients Who Say Just". For example:

- Just make me a copy for the web
- Just do the American version
- Just make me a couple of CD-ROMs, oh, and where's the Macromedia Director front end
- Just make me 800 copies and it won't be more than the cost of the media will it...
- Just make me a couple of DVDs.

Easily the most insidious of these the "digital media package", meaning web and CD-ROM versions, implying delivery as MPEG-1, Sorenson 3 320x400 20% Quicktime, Sorenson 3 640x480 65% Quicktime, real video with 56, 256 and 512Kbit streams, windows media video with 56, 256 and 512Kbit streams... creating all this junk is the best part of a day's watching progress bars, and it has an alarming tendency to get tacked cost-free onto contracts with a "just".

Now if you'll excuse me for a moment while I get down off my soapbox...

I do hope you are not contractually obliged to master the DVD for them. If you are, good luck - you'll need it. I just submitted a rather considerable DVD project after a huge amount of "just"s regarding minute layout and navigation changes.

If you aren't, you need to make it clear that mastering to unusual formats is chargeable and creating navigation systems, code and artwork is very very chargeable.

Phil

- Oh, and, er - I don't get a lot of work because I can do all this stuff. Anyone can do all this stuff - most of the software is free, and even fairly-decent DVD mastering software like Encore is something a student could pick up in half an hour, at least to the point of it being less of a problem than coming up with a coherent interface for the disc. It's not special any more - but it is chargeable.
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#7 Phil Connolly

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Posted 29 July 2006 - 08:28 AM

I've used DLT's for mastering dual layer DVD's - but I don't think their worth the hassel for single layer discs. I've had a few projects glass mastered from DVD-R (authoring disks) with no problems.

DLT's are being used in broadcasting but mostly as an archive format. Typically in server based transmission programs are still delivered on Digi-Beta (D5, HDCAM whatever), and cached to a server for transmission and kept on the server for as long as the programs needed. Then afterwards the file is recorded to DLT for long term archiving as its easier and cheaper to store than the larger Beta/D5 tapes.

But I would be supprised to hear a broadcaster requesting delivery on DLT as there are no standards (at the present time) to define how the data is encoded - either on servers or for archives it may be that a broadcaster has files at one bit rate for commercials and another for programes. One channel may use MPEG-2 at 50mbs but another could use 15, 25mbs.

I'm not sure what saving delivering on DLT would bring to a channel - you would still have to copy it onto a server for broadcast - sure its faster than real time, but doing if from video tape is not really labour intensive (especially with auto loading systems) - and theres less to go wrong, I'm sure the broadcaster would get loads of un-playable DLTs with files in the wrong format.
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#8 Alessandro Machi

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Posted 29 July 2006 - 04:14 PM

I'm not sure what saving delivering on DLT would bring to a channel - you would still have to copy it onto a server for broadcast - sure its faster than real time, but doing if from video tape is not really labour intensive (especially with auto loading systems) - and theres less to go wrong, I'm sure the broadcaster would get loads of un-playable DLTs with files in the wrong format.


It has to de with DVD sales. Even shows that are ratings poor but develop a "cult following" might still sell a couple hundred thousand to a million dvd's once the show has run it's course, that could equal millions of dollars of additional profits even if the show itself only broke even.

Handing someone a high resolution videotape madter may eventually be considered old school. The problem with that thinking however is that videotape masters do represent a drop dead accurate PICTURE LOCK of the show, whereas all these other formats and options are not picture locks because they are not cross compatible in the way that a high resolution videotape master is nor will everyone treat them the same way once they receive a clone.

A high resolution videotape master can be transferred to basically anything else, whereas some of these other digital formats won't ever have as an exacting a standard that everyone will follow in the same way. Just consider having to deliver a DLT as a hand grenade waiting to explode. If you handle the DLT step properly, you will have knowledge that not that many people in production actually have, however if something goes wrong, you will be dealing with all kinds of compatibility issues rather than doing production.
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