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  #1  
Old 10-28-2011, 01:34 PM
Rizz Rizz is offline
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Default Mix for TV played in a theatre

I mix primarily for TV. Every so often someone wants to do a playback in a movie theatre (or they want to send their doc to a film festival). I mix in 5.1 and do an LtRt using a dolby DP563 encoder. My question is will an LtRt done in prologic II, playback ok in a movie theatre if it's decoded through their decoder? I would prefer to have them playback the 5.1 mix but this isn't always possible. Thanks in advance for any help.
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  #2  
Old 10-28-2011, 02:48 PM
garnoil garnoil is offline
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Default Re: Mix for TV played in a theatre

I would be very careful with generic "film festivals". So many of these festivals have terrible sound and picture, and are staffed by "volunteers" as opposed to professional technicians . The fact that it plays in a "festival and even in a theater" does not mean that the sound will be anything like what a professional commercial theater will sound like. I have sent many films to festival (at least 30 mixes), and generic festival usually have horrible sound. Just a couple of weeks ago, I film that I did played at a very large theater (this is a real movie theater) that had an old "monophonic system". The sound had NO BASS at all (somehow they were lacking anything from 20 hz to about 200 hz according to my meter), and the could not even reach 85dbC from pink without totally distorting the system. If you want your film to sound great, you should probably provide them a good stereo mix also. Too many of these festivals don't even know what LTRT is or how to decode it.
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Old 10-28-2011, 05:01 PM
Craig F Craig F is offline
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Default Re: Mix for TV played in a theatre

Most Dolby Cinema Processors don't have PL2 (I don't know about the newer models) they only have PL1 decoding
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  #4  
Old 10-28-2011, 06:05 PM
Postman Postman is offline
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Default Re: Mix for TV played in a theatre

Some newer processors have PL2! They're really very cool, with PC interface and lots of options. I had a client encode my PL2 mix to a stereo AC3 on his DVD for a screening. At Tribecca screening room a very recent Dolby processor (don't know the model) could play it. We discovered the capability shortly before a screening was to begin. The projectionist didn't know what was what but he allowed me to snoop through the settings and figure it out. We were both impressed.

Some less recent processors can decode LtRt into Dolby Surround (basically PL1). The earliest processors can only decode from optical tracks, so you'd be stuck with stereo through them.

I differ from garnoil, I think you can go ahead to use the LtRt, not LoRo. There is no practical downside IMHO and a possible upside. I prefer to encode PL2 and check both PL2 and PL1 decode in the trouble spots. If it works as PL2 it will almost certainly be acceptable as PL1, just maybe not as exciting in the surround. With PL2 you're covered pretty well anywhere.

Of course, bad speakers and poor sound quality are a different topic.
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Old 10-28-2011, 06:31 PM
garnoil garnoil is offline
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Default Re: Mix for TV played in a theatre

I actually always provide Prologic 2 mix "as well" as LoRo. These are always part of my deliverables, if a mix a film in 5.1 you automatically get the LTRT and the LoRo. I think you will find that most generic film festivals only offer HD cam play back and not HD Cam SR. With HD Cam we always put LTRT on the first 2 tracks and LoRo on tracks 3 and 4. This way, if the theater DOES have Pro-Logic 2 play back decoding they can patch LTRT but if not, they can use LORO. If by luck there is a festival with HD CAM SR or DCP...then of course it is 5.1. Most festivals do not screen from Blue Ray (although some smaller will do that if you ask).
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Old 10-28-2011, 08:25 PM
philper philper is offline
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Default Re: Mix for TV played in a theatre

We only send fests LtRt anymore--if they can decode it, great, if they can't ok, if they play it as mono off a classroom TV, it'll work. No choice means no chance to doing something spontaneously creative like playing channels 2 and 3 as L and R (it's happened to me, more than once). It seems like the fests the mixes I do go to can never deal with 5.1 discrete in any fashion, but a lot of them can decode an LtRt just fine.

phil p
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  #7  
Old 10-29-2011, 01:10 PM
Nahuel Palenque Nahuel Palenque is offline
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Default Re: Mix for TV played in a theatre

The Dolby CP500 decodes the Non-Sync Input with ProLogic and I think that a newer model, CP750, does the matrixing decode using Pro Logic II. This last model it´s often used with DCP.
I worked at the International Buenos Aires Independent Film Fest and the majors problems we had were that some HD tapes didn´t specify the content of each track and the type of codification used (PL1 or PL2). This is part of the techs specifications that the movie´s distributor has to complete when they send the tape.
Other problem we found was the big difference between the average level of each movie.
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Old 10-31-2011, 05:29 AM
Postman Postman is offline
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Default Re: Mix for TV played in a theatre

Yes that's the processor I'm talking about, a CP750. It was mounted in an equipment rack. The projectionist was running Theater Management System software on his laptop. Very smooth.

Quote:
Other problem we found was the big difference between the average level of each movie.
This will be a continuous problem and will probably only get worse. There are no loudness standards imposed on film theater mixes. Something like Dolby Media Management would help the projectionist I think. DMM could scan a film's mix levels before showtime to suggest a starting playback volume setting.

Don't get me started on the lack of documentation these days. We' know how to blog but have forgotten how to fill out box labels.
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