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Filmmaker Mode: Everything you need to know about the new image mode

Last year the UHD Alliance announced about launching a special Filmmaker Mode. But what exactly does Filmmaker Mode mean and what is the use of it?
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Last year the UHD Alliance already announced that it would be launching a special Filmmaker Mode, with which content should be shown on televisions as the filmmakers intended. We are now a few months later and we see the picture mode appear on various televisions from major manufacturers. But what exactly does Filmmaker Mode mean and what is the use of it?

The Filmmaker Mode for an original display

Today you can already find a wide variety of image modes on your television, from lively to cinema or bright. And we are not even talking about all HDR modes. But, according to the makers of films, none of those modes are really perfect for showing a movie. That is why the UHD Alliance – a collaboration between various parties from the film and TV industry – has taken the initiative to come up with a so-called Filmmaker Mode with which TVs display films in the way the film maker intended.

Criticism from Hollywood

It all started with criticism from filmmakers and movie stars. Tom Cruise and Christopher Nolan, among others, indicated that they are not happy with how televisions deal with original film content today. For example, televisions would do too many operations that would not benefit the playback. The biggest criticism had to do with the image interpolation. This adds extra frames to the TV, so that fast movements in particular look smoother. This is a stumbling block for many directors as these options make images appear unnatural, remove the film effect and, above all, show something that the makers never intended. Almost all major brands’ TVs have motion interpolation, but under different names. For example, Philips calls it Perfect Natural Motion, while LG calls it TruMotion. Although many viewers often find it fine options because it makes images run smoother, it is therefore a thorn in the eye of the makers. In addition, there was criticism of incorrect aspect ratios, too intense colors and converted frame rates.

What does Filmmaker Mode do?

A Filmmaker Mode was created to show films and series without all those adaptations of televisions. When this image mode is activated on a television, various “post-processing” techniques are disabled. So think of image interpolation, noise reduction, color enhancement and sharpness. In addition, the properties of the original film or series are maintained. This keeps the aspect ratio exactly as it was intended by the makers, just like the frame rate (the number of images per second) and the color reproduction.

Automatically or with the remote control

The Filmmaker Mode works in both SDR and HDR mode and can be switched on automatically (by recognizing metadata in the signal) or via a button on the remote control . With the automatic option you are asked as a viewer if you want to switch on the Filmmaker Mode. It is up to manufacturers to integrate both options or one of them into their TVs.

From 2020 on televisions

The Filmmaker Mode will appear on the first televisions in 2020 from, among others, Panasonic, LG, Philips, Samsung and the American Vizio. Unfortunately, the mode is not yet added to previously launched models. Whether other manufacturers, including Sony, will support image mode is not yet clear.