Delta Sigma Consultancy

IBC Innovation Award

Delta Sigma Consultancy's project Film Soundtrack Adaptation for SBS Broadcasting, one of the three leading broadcast networks in the Netherlands, is acknowledged as 'Highly Commended' at the election of the 2015 IBC Innovation Awards. Nominated in the Content Management category, SBS is being recognized for its use of a new loudness normalisation workflow designed by Richard van Everdingen. Based hereon, project partner NUGEN Audio was able to develop a new algorithm called DynApt™, to create a ground-breaking loudness-normalised workflow for soundtrack adaptation of film and series.

Challenges

SBS sought to improve audio quality for broadcasting films and drama series within the guidelines of the European recommendation for loudness normalisation EBU R128. For motion pictures in particular, this presented several key challenges: how to preserve an optimal quality of experience in terms of dynamic audio contrasts, how to loudness-align content with commercial breaks and generic programs, and how to implement a highly automated, efficient, and cost-effective workflow. SBS chose the new workflow to address these challenges.

How does it work?

DynApt automatically analyses the loudness levels throughout a piece of audio and then carefully controls a configurable maximum difference between program loudness and average voice level. Leveraging technology from Minnetonka Audio, SBS was able to create an anchor-based loudness normalisation workflow that enables the broadcaster to process a movie's audio for broadcast in harmony with the producers' original intent. In addition, the solution does not interfere with the audio at all if there is no need.

"This innovative new audio loudness workflow is of particular interest for any broadcasting organisation of film distributor and contributes to achieving a single, worldwide loudness standard for television" said Richard van Everdingen, consultant at Delta Sigma Consultancy. "It is very much appreciated that an innovation related to audio quality and loudness has been awarded as finalist."

Significance

The IBC Innovation Awards are designed to honour not only technical ingenuity but also the way that the technology is used in the real world, bringing tangible creative and commercial benefits to a project. The ten shortlisted companies are broadcasters, media enterprises, and service providers who defined a goal, brought together the best technology partners for collaborative projects, and now benefit from the innovative thinking. SBS shared the shortlist with three highly competitive entries in the Content Management category.

"Each year we see more and more submissions, because media companies worldwide recognize the very special nature of this awards program" said Michael Lumley, chair of the IBC2015 Innovation Awards judging panel. Industry recognised and renowned for their prestige, the IBC Innovation Awards have grown to become the most valued honour for technological developments and collaboration.

More information

The technology behind Film Soundtrack Adaptation is valuable for sound mixers, broadcasting organisations and film distributors and is free to use by manufacturers. For more information, please contact Delta Sigma Consultancy.

The IBC Award 2015 ceremony: 

NL EN