• Create account and Log In DCP Maker
  • Prepare your source files (QuickTime Movie include audio or separate WAV 48 kHz 16 or 24 bit synchronous with the video file)
  • Upload to DCP Maker your source files
  • Using the form on our website, create your DCP Project
  • If necessary, make advanced DCP settings, you can use the Advanced settings section, where you can change the default DCP settings
  • Check your DCP settings and find out the cost of creating DCP
  • Top-up your DCP Credit balance
  • Start selected DCP Project
  • When DCP will be ready, you get a notification to your e-mail address and can download it

DCP is the abbreviation for Digital Cinema Package. As the word “Package” suggests, a DCP is a collection of files rather than a single file.

A DCP basically consists of two categories of elements:
  • media assets (MXF files of video, audio, subtitles)
  • index files, referring to those media assets

The term DCP has been defined by the DCI, The Digital Cinema Initiatives, LLC in their recommendations for packaging of contents for Digital Cinema.

See also: DCP on Wikipedia

PLEASE NOTICE: The best way to distribute your DCP to theaters is to send a download link to your zipped DCP. Your DCP basically is a folder containing a substantial number of files (media assets and index files). Every time this folder with all of its many files is copied or transferred, there’s a risk of transmission errors. And digital cinema servers are very sensitive to the smallest of errors in your DCP.

Before you download your DCP, please make sure that there’s enough capacity on your hard drive and/or your download folder.

To avoid data transmission errors during download, we provide ALL our downloads as ZIP packages. Before transferring your DCP, you’ll have to extract the downloaded ZIP package.

Transfer Media Options

If you can’t directly transfer your DCP to the cinema server via network, you’ll need a transfer medium to transfer your DCP from your local machine to the server. Since most if not all digital cinema servers have a USB port, USB media is the best option.

For smaller DCPs, you can use a USB-stick.
For larger DCPs, external USB hard drives will be a suitable option. (The de facto industry standard for larger DCPs – used by major distributors – is the CRU data carrier.)

Formatting your Transfer Media

Digital Cinema Servers work on Linux based systems. That’s why formatting your USB media with a Linux file system is the best option.

A good way to format your media and transfer your files in a Linux environment is to work with GParted. GParted is a free partition editor for graphically managing your disk partitions under Linux. GParted offers a Live CD/USB for download that will run a small Linux distribution on your system (no installation required).

Having booted from the GParted Live CD/USB, connect your USB media to your system and format it with GParted according to these specifications:

  • File System: Ext2
  • Size: 128

There is a second option available for formatting your USB media that will work on most server systems: The FAT32 file system. But FAT32 is suitable only if none of your DCP’s assets exceeds a file size of 4 GigaByte.

If you choose to format your USB media as FAT32 under Windows, choose the following values:

  • File System: FAT32
  • Allocation unit size: 8192 bytes

Copy data from your local machine to your USB medium

After formatting your USB media you can copy your DCP’s data.

Your DCP’s files (media assets and index files) are located in a folder named after your CPL (Composition Playlist). Select this folder and copy the folder to your USB media’s root.

PLEASE NOTICE: Digital cinema servers will scan your USB media for content in sub-folders. Nonetheless, we recommend placing your DCP’s main folder into the root folder of your USB media.

Now you can carry your USB Media with DCP to the cinema

The Digital Cinema Initiatives, LLC (DCI) is a joint venture of major motion picture studios.

The DCI was formed in 2002 with the goal of establishing a standard architecture for digital cinema systems.

See also: ‘Digital Cinema Initiatives’ on Wikipedia

There are SMPTE and InterOp are two standards that define common practices for creating DCPs.

InterOp wasn’t released as an official standard. The specifications for InterOp DCPs are a collection of recommendations, based on a Digital Cinema Specification Document, released by the MPEG InterOp Initiative in 2003. In this document, norms for the creation of digital cinema content were established for the first time ever.

The SMPTE standard was developed and released by the Digital Cinema Initiatives, LLC (DCI) and was meant to replace the older InterOp standard.

Though the SMPTE standard allows for more flexibility (e.g. in regards to frame rates and audio formats) today’s reality still is this: SMPTE DCPs can’t be played on all digital cinema systems. If you want to make sure that your DCP can be played on any system around the world, you’ll have to use the InterOp standard.

The simple reason behind this is that not every digital cinema server that was installed before the SMPTE standard existed can be updated with the ability to interpret SMPTE DCPs correctly. And – even if they can be updated – not every cinema does so.

By default DCP Maker creates DCP in InterOp standard

The Digital Cinema Naming Convention is a voluntary industry recommendation, designed to provide human readable information. It defines how CPLs can be named.

The Digital Cinema Naming Convention has two primary objectives:

  • to make as much information visible as possible, and
  • to display the information in a specific order — in assigned fields — so theatres will know where to look for specific information.

To achieve these ends, most of the information is abbreviated — including the movie title if necessary — and most of the abbreviations are standardized.

See also: www.digitalcinemanamingconvention.com



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