No DCP subfolder

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matsadona
Posts: 4
Joined: Sun Apr 19, 2020 4:13 pm

No DCP subfolder

Post by matsadona »

Hi all
As a consequence of the current Covid-19 situation our local cinema is having a hard time with almost no regular customers at all. However they are creative and now you are allowed to book the whole cinema for just you and your family, or some friends, for private shows.
A great offer and the original plan was just to hook up a laptop or a Raspberry Pi via HDMI and let it be. However at a first test shot I realized that it was indeed possible but we wouldn't be able to use the full potential (screen).
The cinema manager asked if I had a DCP for the film. A couple of days ago I never heard about DCP but after some reading and tutorial watching I found this great software.
So yes, I'm indeed a rookie and some answers to my questions might be very obvious to all of you. However I start to feel some pressures since the scheduled show is just some days away.

So, my problem is that no DCP sub folder is created in the project folder. I only got the standard working files:
[analysis]
[info]
[video]
ffprobe.log
log
metadata.xml
and a pcm_82b363-xxxx....mxf file.

I have tried more than ten times with different material (both adding mkv and m4v files) and on two different computers. (I love the server rendering by the way.)
Still, it does like this every time.

The ironic thing is that the first test run I did with a short movie (to keep the rendering time down) was successful. With that one I had a DCP subfolder (Title_FTR-1_F239_EN_XX_51_2K...) with both the audio and video MXF files and all the XML files.
So what am I doing different now a couple of days later? Or is there any post donation activation of the software that must be done?
I'm totally lost here and the more I look at it the more I get confused since I simply can't get it. Any help would be very much appreciated.
Thanks.

carl
Site Admin
Posts: 1191
Joined: Thu Nov 14, 2013 2:53 pm

Re: No DCP subfolder

Post by carl »

There's no activation to do. Can you send me the "log" and "metadata.xml" files from inside one of your failed projects? That should give some clues as to what's gone wrong.

carl@dcpomatic.com

Carsten
Posts: 1601
Joined: Tue Apr 15, 2014 9:11 pm
Location: Germany

Re: No DCP subfolder

Post by Carsten »

If there is no DCP folder created, this will usually only occur because the conversion crashed midway, or is not yet finished ;-)


While of course I am an endorser of DCP-o-matic, I think a plain vanilla HDMI connection from a PC or media player should be easier for what you describe. Maybe the projector is not setup properly. One would need to know more about the projector and screen design in that specific auditorium.
You also need to make yourself familiar with the term 'aspect ratio' and how it applies to home/personal and cinema content. This is equally important when connecting HDMI devices to a cinema projector as well as when creating DCPs from non-standard aspect ratio content.

https://youtu.be/bryGMHgSc9g


- Carsten

matsadona
Posts: 4
Joined: Sun Apr 19, 2020 4:13 pm

Re: No DCP subfolder

Post by matsadona »

Thanks for your replies.

Carl -> I'll send the files as soon as it is completed. 2 more hours to run...

Carsten -> Yes, I think I got it now regarding the different formats and resolutions etc. but is was a bit overwhelming at start. However the projector only stays in flat, so there would be a large portion of the screen not used. The responsible at the cinema doesn't know much about it either and she doesn't want to tamper with any settings. That is of course a problem when I can't get any help for questions that is out of the normal day to day routines.
Do the projectors normally change this automatically, or do you have to manually change the mode (channel?)?

So this is what I have right now with the Raspberry Pi (Green area the actual movie content, blue the full desktop image from the Pi and the grey area the screen):
Screen.png
Screen.png (5.63 KiB) Viewed 2677 times
Anyone around here that successfully edited the hdmi timings for a Raspberry Pi 4 to get a true scope resolution?
I tried with 2048*1080 but then some pixels at the left and right wasn't shown at all, but that is because of the projector in the wrong mode perhaps?

If everything else fail I will let it run with standard HD via HDMI and live with the fact that the actual picture shown will be smaller than the screen size.
For sure it will be much larger than at home anyway... But I would prefer a working DCP package with the content cropped and converted to scope (loosing some pixels in top and bottom to get the 2.39:1 ratio).

Carsten
Posts: 1601
Joined: Tue Apr 15, 2014 9:11 pm
Location: Germany

Re: No DCP subfolder

Post by Carsten »

Typically, every projector preset has to be associated with an input (DCP, or HDMI), and a picture setting. If they have a scope screen, they are probably set up to switch between flat and scope for DCP, but maybe not for HDMI. Or, they are setup for different formats over HDMI, but they don't know how to select these different presets. Unfortunately, many cinema operators are not able to adjust these settings themselves - most would need to call in a tech to create new presets. But I would first check wether there really is no scope preset for HDMI.
The format switching does not happen by itself. Usually, the operator creates a playlist, and this will need to contain format cues to be executed while the playlist runs. So, preshow will typically run with a leading flat preset, and before a scope feature starts, a scope cue will be executed prior to the feature. In our cinema, I have three simple dummy playlists that I use when I show content from e.g. Bluray. They do nothing else than to switch input to HDMI and set the projector to either 16:9,flat or scope.

In general, a flat and a scope preset should be able to cover all typical needs. E.g., a common 16:9 source should fit well enough into flat.

It would be useless to set the PI to a real scope resolution, because it still needs a matching projector preset. In general, scope from consumer sources is letterboxed/embedded in a 1920*1080 signal, black bars on top and bottom. In a scope preset, these black bars are then masked out.

Note that things could get more complicated if you use e.g. a mediaplayer GUI/menu (like KODI) and, scope content. If you have the projector in a scope preset, the 16:9 GUI will be cut off on top and bottom. You would maybe need to call the flat preset to operate the GUI, and set to scope when scope is to be shown. The same would happen e.g. with a DVD/Bluray player, where the player and/or disc menu would be in 16:9 even if the feature is scope. In some cases, operating the menu will be still be possible, even if cut off that way.

- Carsten
Last edited by Carsten on Mon Apr 20, 2020 10:06 am, edited 1 time in total.

matsadona
Posts: 4
Joined: Sun Apr 19, 2020 4:13 pm

Re: No DCP subfolder

Post by matsadona »

Thanks once again for bearing with me.
I assume then that the preset for this HDMI input (normally used by a Bluray player) is set to flat. I'll try again to check with them if that can be changed. And yes, they have some support tech that they are calling now and then with technical questions. We had to do that when trying to understand how to get the digital sound from the Pi to the preamp. Eventually we figured out that there was no sound output either from the Justboom hat or when we used an HDMI extractor. Something wrong with the Pi I haven't figured out yet.

Carsten
Posts: 1601
Joined: Tue Apr 15, 2014 9:11 pm
Location: Germany

Re: No DCP subfolder

Post by Carsten »

The PI will usually output audio through HDMI when e.g. used with common media players. However, depending on the cinema projector and sound system, they may not be able to extract audio from the HDMI. You may indeed need an HDMI extractor between PI an projector to accomplish that. Then it depends a bit on content and mediaplayer options how the audio channels are transported within HDMI. I know that some HDMI audio extractors can not extract discrete multichannel PCM, but only plain stereo or encoded surround (e.g. AC3).

Keep in mind, most current Bluray players can also play typical consumer files from a USB stick, or have e.g. Netflix clients. Using Netflix, Amazon Prime or Disney+ could be an option for private rentals as well. A FireTV stick would be all you need.

- Carsten

matsadona
Posts: 4
Joined: Sun Apr 19, 2020 4:13 pm

Re: No DCP subfolder

Post by matsadona »

A bag of mixed emotions here today.

First, I feel stupid in so many ways right now. I have learned now that the DCP subfolder isn't created until the end of the process. So eventually it got there. The first faulty render must have been aborted during the night, but since that project folder is deleted I will never know for sure what happend (no log files). Perhaps there was a reboot caused by a windows update during the night?

Anyway, the end result was working perfectly when I tested it at location earlier today. The picture and sound was flawless and everything was great!
For the record it is a NEC NC2000C system.

The really sad part is that there will be no show. Eventually they didn't dare to proceed for copyright reasons, so it has been cancelled.

But, I have learned a lot during these last day. Perhaps I can benefit from this knowledge later on in life.
I love the software and the support from you guys. I will definitely recommend it as soon as I get the opportunity.


Regarding the sound on the Pi I had forgot to activate I2C that was needed for the stream to go through the hat :oops:
The sound format (DTS 5.1) however was not recognized by the cinema system (CP650/DMA8Plus) so it only played in stereo.

Thanks.

Carsten
Posts: 1601
Joined: Tue Apr 15, 2014 9:11 pm
Location: Germany

Re: No DCP subfolder

Post by Carsten »

CP650/DMA8 is Dolby - no way ever will they support a competitors format, not even in their very latest processors.

- Carsten

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