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DPP News

PBS to adopt AMWA AS-11 X9 specification

The DPP, the media industry’s business network, in collaboration with the North American Broadcasters Association (NABA) and the Advanced Media Workflow Association (AMWA) is delighted to announce the adoption of AMWA AS-11 X9: MXF Program Contribution – NABA DPP HD (AVC), by broadcaster PBS. PBS is a member of all three organisations.

AMWA AS-11 X9 is a technical specification designed by DPP, NABA and AMWA to support the business needs of global broadcasters delivering High Definition (HD) programmes to North America. The specification belongs to the AS-11 X family of air-ready master formats that define constrained media file formats for the delivery of finished media assets to a broadcaster or publisher.

“The adoption of AMWA AS-11 X9 by PBS is a significant moment for the industry, showing that a collaborative approach is essential to meeting the industry’s developing needs”, says Rowan de Pomerai, DPP Head of Delivery and Growth. “We, at the DPP, along with our colleagues at NABA and AMWA, are working closely with all of our members to ensure that each new specification addresses their business needs effectively.”

AMWA AS-11 X9 uses a constrained version of the H.264 codec to offer significant benefits in picture bandwidth and fidelity for programme distribution. The specification also supports audio carriage in both PCM and AAC format.

AMWA AS-11 X9 is one of the chosen delivery formats for PBS’s New Media Supply Chain and will be the subject of exhibits and sessions at PBS TechCon, taking place in Las Vegas 3-5 April, ahead of the 2019 NAB Show.

“We see AS-11 X9 as a step toward ongoing PBS modernization efforts. The adoption of this specification is a key component to moving PBS away from legacy formats, processes and systems,” says Renard Jenkins, PBS Vice President of Operations, Engineering & Distribution. “The collaborative work of AMWA, DPP and NABA resulted in a format that should gain wide adoption throughout North America. We encourage vendors and broadcasters to consider its usefulness.”

Adoption of AMWA AS-11 X9 by other North American broadcasters is a key goal of this collaboration, alongside implementation by product vendors. In order to support this aim, the DPP Test Lab will launch its AMWA AS-11 X9 compliance testing programme in April this year.

Products that pass the test programme will be eligible to apply for a compliance certificate from AMWA, providing buyers and sellers with the confidence that DPP tested tools are technically compliant and interoperable. The DPP, NABA and AMWA will also work with their respective members to facilitate implementation.

“We are delighted that the AMWA AS-11 family continues to grow and show relevance across the globe”, says Brad Gilmer, AMWA Executive Director.  “Its support in North America represents a significant step forward and promises to bring important business efficiencies to the media companies that adopt it.”

The DPP and its partners, including AMWA and NABA, continue to extend the AS-11 family. The next addition to the family will provide UHD delivery formats for both the European and North American markets.