Fraunhofer IIS Announces Availability of CURATOR Archive Suite

Press Release / 4.4.2011

Lossless compression storage solution now available for Digital Film Archives at NAB 2011 Fraunhofer IIS’s Moving Picture Technologies department, with deep expertise in digital cinema and JPEG2000, announces the general availability of its CURATOR Archive Suite at NAB 2011, April 11-14, 2011 in Las Vegas, NV, Booth SU5520.

The CURATOR Archive Suite is a long-term archive solution that provides the complete suite for post production, archiving, and playback from the archive. It includes the tools to create both a Master Archive Package (MAP) and an Intermediate Access Package (IAP).

The software creates MAP files with lossless coding. For IAP files, it creates an MXF-Container in 2k and 4k horizontal resolutions. IAP is an extension of a Digital Cinema Package (DCP) and can be used for fast access and further distribution. DCPs can be directly extracted from the IAP without recoding.

“In production, lossless compression is critical to preserving the integrity of digital film archives,” said Dr. Siegfried Foessel of Fraunhofer IIS’s Moving Pictures Technology department. “This will be especially important as projectors and film production evolves to 8k or to higher color gamuts, because the archives will be only capable of producing a file for remastering based on their archived quality.”

The suite consists of three components:

  • CURATOR Creator to package the image, audio and metadata files for the creation of a MAP, IAP or DCP.
  • CURATOR Player for real-time playback of the MAP or IAP on a standard PC for quick quality checks and unpackaging.
  • Fraunhofer J2K Quicktime plug-in to convert images into MOV files with JPEG2000 encoded images.

Fraunhofer IIS’s CURATOR Archive Suite integrates a complete workflow for archives. The workflow starts when the analog material is converted to digital data and is done at the maximum native resolution and bit depth to preserve quality. The image is then encoded to JPEG2000, either with the Fraunhofer J2K plug-in for Quicktime or the CURATOR Creator allowing the choice of the appropriate format. After encoding, the next step is the mastering and packaging of a MAP or IAP. Image, audio and metadata are all packaged into the MAP or IAP. Trackfiles are packed into separate (Metadata Exchange Format) MXF containers and linked together with metadata XML files. The software creates a digital data package containing all these components and adds a Packaging List (PKL) and a Composition Play List (CPL). For playback and extraction, the film can be decoded for a quality check.

Fraunhofer IIS concentrated on integrating standards-compliant pre-settings. The import of DPX, TIFF, J2K and MOV files is possible. It can also store technical and descriptive metadata in XML format. The easy-to-use software is based on the standardized JPEG2000 profiles for digital archiving and meets the standards defined by the International Organization for Standardization ISO (ISO15444-1:2004AMD2) and the International Federation of Film Archives FIAF.