Archimedia to Unveil Iris at NAB 2015

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Thu, 03/05/2015 - 13:02 -- Nick Dager

Archimedia Iris Media IntelligenceAt this year's National Association of Broadcaster’s Show, Archimedia Technology will showcase products that usher collaboration and critical viewing into the realm of 4K/UHDTV at high frame rates and high dynamic range. New at NAB is the Iris Media Intelligence family of products for interactive quality control, review, and validation of any media, timed text, or metadata file in a file-based workflow. Iris products work with Archimedia's new Iris Cloud Service to enable instant worldwide collaboration for workgroups of any size and composition — always under the content owner's secure control.

In a press release issues today, the company said that attendees will also see refinements to Archimedia's unprecedented professional media player, now called Atlas, which has become the reference standard for virtually all major broadcast networks and movie studios. Atlas now lets people see 4K 60p and HDR video on the screens they already have.

Prior to the announcement I spoke with Archimedia co-founders Mark Gray, president and CEO and Josef Marc, chief marketing officer.

“Iris is really what we wanted to build in the first place,” said Marc. “Professional filmmakers need a system that will present their media in a trustworthy way. People are not working alone anymore and they need media intelligence. You and your colleagues need a lot of information about that information.”

“The content has to remain in the control of the content owner,” Marc said. “As a content owner you need to investigate the media you have to confirm that it’s recorded, validated and ready for the whole team to start collaborating on. That process is no longer film or tape based, which means that teams are no longer constrained by sequential timeline.”

Gray said the company is still working out the details of pricing but the costs for Iris will be similar to the Go-to-Meeting pricing model.

“We’re just going into Beta with a broad selection of our existing customers,” he said. This includes Hollywood studios, broadcast networks and smaller service providers. A team of five fulltime engineers has been developing Iris for the past several years, he said.

Gray, who has won multiple technical Emmys and has brought many innovative products to market through the years, runs out of superlatives when he talks about Iris. “You’ve never seen anything like this,” Gray said. “Iris creates a new product category. We are very excited.”

Iris Media Intelligence enables everyone on a project can know when it's right — or not — and make decisions accordingly.

With Iris, collaboration speeds up file-based workflows, frame-accurate interactive communication eliminates costly rework, and format independence eliminates transcoding steps.

For investigation and validation, Iris includes a professional media player with a captions viewer, test and measurement tools, format template matching, audio region-of-interest zoom, and more. For collaboration, Iris features on-screen annotation and markup, shared notes, approvals and measurements, live chat, and project history for workgroups of any size. Iris' timeline-based platform will be the framework for more Archimedia file-based workflow products in the future.

Iris supports hundreds of video, audio, caption, and subtitle formats up to 4K 60p; is always frame-accurate; and comes with Archimedia's renowned personal tech support.

Iris Media Intelligence products include:

Iris 4K — Tuned and perfected for 4K performance. For groups of media professionals doing critical analysis, managing media projects, and/or viewing anywhere along the file-based workflow. Available in deskside tower or rack-mount configurations. Options include Fibre Channel, SDI up to Quad Link 4K, HDMI 2.0, up to 8 TB internal SSD storage, and LTO6.

Iris Extreme — Similar to Iris 4K, with even more power and storage for demanding 4K 60p applications.

Iris 2K — Similar to Iris 4K, with CPU and disk bandwidth suitable for 2K digital cinema and HD media.

Iris HD — Similar to Iris 2K, optimized for broadcast media formats.

Iris Desktop — Iris software for office desktops. Works with any format that the host computer will support. Sold in packages of 10 licenses as perpetual licenses with the first three years of support included, or as SaaS for three years.

Iris Collaborator — Free — Iris by invitation. Iris desktop application that gives anyone invited into an existing workgroup complete functionality to chat, collaborate, annotate, see, and approve all of the inviting workgroup's media intelligence, test measurements, validations, and media files, including masters. 

Iris SE Software Edition — The complete Iris Media Intelligence Platform in a software-only version to suit existing PCs. Includes RS-422 Sony 9-pin control and software licensing for optional SDI output.

Iris Cloud Service — Allows Iris users worldwide to create groups instantly in order to interactively share notes, annotate, chat, and obtain approvals, all with frame-accurate documentation, measurements, and metadata. Can also be deployed behind firewalls for private clouds. Media files are always under the owner's secure control.

Archimedia AtlasArchimedia will also display the Atlas family of professional media players for critical viewing of encoded A/V content on any screen in any format, with new features the industry has requested.

The full-featured players support all kinds of video, audio, and caption/subtitle formats, with professional scaling tools to handle everything from the smallest Web video to UHD, 4K, and beyond. The latest version, Atlas 3.1, is capable of playing 4K 60p and HDR-encoded content at full screen, in practically any format and from all kinds of sources and manufacturers via SDI, HDMI, DisplayPort, and DVI to all kinds of screens, all with frame-accurate precision. That capability is a breakthrough for all professionals in the media and entertainment industry — from technocrats to producers to executives to archivists to lawyers — who until now had no way to view 4K 60p and HDR content outside of the edit suite in which it was created without first transcoding it to a smaller format to suit hardware limitations. 

The Atlas family of professional media players includes:

Atlas 4K — Powerful media appliance for critical review and validation of audio, video, timed text, and metadata files for all broadcast and digital cinema formats through 4K. Hardware options include Fibre Channel, SDI up to Quad Link 4K, HDMI 2.0, LTO6, and up to 8 TB internal SSD storage.

Atlas Extreme — Similar to Atlas 4K, with even more power for demanding 4K 60p applications.

Atlas 2K — Similar to Atlas 4K, with CPU suitable for 2K digital cinema and HD media.

Atlas HD — Similar to Atlas 2K, optimized for broadcast formats.

Atlas Desktop — Atlas software for the enterprise desktop, making critical review of media, timed text, and metadata files available throughout an organization. Sold as a perpetual license with first three years of support included, or as SaaS for three years.

Atlas SE Software Editions — A software-only package installed on a customer's own Windows computer to make it an Atlas media-playing computer. 

Archimedia Technology