Encoding UHDTV, x.265, 4K aka UHD

Wow now that UltraHD is now a thing and you can buy UHD Blu-ray, how do you think about encoding all of this. Well here are some of the things to know:

  1. X.265 (aka HEVC). This is the latest encoding format. Think of it as life beyond X.264 (aka MPEG-4). It is about twice as efficient so save some disk while you are at it!
  2. Rec. 709 and Rec. 2020. Ok these are terrible names, but refer to the color space (that is how many colors are represented). With the now ancient Blu-ray this wasn’t an issue but now that we are moving to HDR with a wide gamut, you want Rec.709 at least and Rec 2020 is better. Of course,
  3. 10-bit color. Related to the above wider color range, today you mainly get 8-bit color, but with wider gamut, you need more bits, so encoding at 10-bits (what in the old days was called 24 bit RGB vs 30 bit RGB) is a big win.
  4. 4K vs well 4K. Ok, one confusing thing is that are two slightly different widths. 4K can mean a true 4096 pixels across or 3840 or so to match the 1920 across that is HD. A bit of a small detail but good to