HDR due next year as DVB approves UHD-1 Phase 2 specification

David Wood

David Wood

The DVB Steering Board hailed a “major milestone for the industry” as it approved the specification for UHD-1 Phase 2 yesterday.

The move means that the first DVB UHD-1 Phase 2 services, including new features like High Dynamic Range (HDR) and higher frame-rates, could be available from next year.

The new specification, which was described as “the tipping point” for UHD TV, guarantees interoperability will allow broadcasters and device manufacturers to provide UHD-1 Phase 2 products and services.

UHD-1 Phase 2 promises to improve video and audio quality for broadcast TV and includes:  High Dynamic Range (HDR), which increases contrast ratio; and Higher Frame Rates (HFR) that go beyond the current 50/60 Hz, offering sharper images of moving objects.

DVB has also added to the specification the latest Next Generation Audio (NGA) schemes supporting object- or scene-based audio and support for Hybrid Log Gamma (HLG) and Perceptual Quantizer (PQ).

“When they draw up the history of television, the agreement by the DVB Steering Board to the UHD-1 Phase 2 specification will surely be writ large,” said David Wood, Chair of DVB CM-UHDTV, which produced the commercial requirements for UHD-1 Phase 2 last year.

“It marks the culmination of many years work by scores of DVB Member engineers, and is probably the tipping point for the new age of UHD TV.”

DVB Chairman, Peter MacAvock, described the approval of the specification as “the result of enormous effort from the contributors,” adding that “DVB views the Phase 2 specification as a key enabler for exciting products and services”.

The specification included participation from more than 30 companies and interested parties participating through the DVB Commercial Module, the Technical Module and the Steering Board. It was agreed over the course of 36 online meetings and 14 physical meetings, which took place over the past three years.