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When LED screens want “showtime” in movie theaters, DCI certification is a must; that is, without a DCI certification, any large-format display cannot be installed in the qualified movie theaters. DCI certification is released by Digital Cinema Initiatives, LLC, a consortium of major motion picture studios dominating the cinema system standards. Unilumin’s LED screens, UC-A41 and UC-A21, have successfully passed the DCI certification and been installed in The China Film Cinema Bei'ao, Beijing (Fig.1), one of them is the world’s largest DCI-certified 4K LED cinema screen, and Macroblock’s LED display driver IC assists to speed up DCI-certified process for LED cinema screens.
Movie theaters have been installing new LED screens and upgrading the movie visuals to lure audiences away from streaming options and to return to the theaters for higher quality, big screen visual experiences. However, the system reliability and high visual quality make cinema market high barriers to entry where DCI certification becomes a standard. Foreseeing the potential of direct-view LED screens in the cinema market, Digital Cinema Initiatives, LLC (DCI) has recently included inspection standard, especially HDR standard, for direct-view LED screens in the DCI specifications. Targeting the huge digital cinema market, Unilumin would require a high-resolution, high dynamic range (HDR), high refresh rate, and high uniformity LED cinema screen to pass the DCI certification. After sourcing for adequate solutions, Unilumin found Macroblock’s LED display driver IC, MBI5850, could meet all the requirements of image quality by DCI. MBI5850 features 16-bit grayscale with smooth low grayscale performance, 3,840Hz visual refresh rate with excellent LED uniformity designed for fine pitch (high-resolution) LED displays. With all the efforts together in nearly one year, Unilumin’s UC-A41 and UC-A21 LED screens have passed the Compliance Test Plan Version 1.2.1 by DCI, providing DCI-P3 color gamut, 40,000 : 1 contrast ratio with outstanding low grayscale performance and uniform image quality to meet audiences’ higher visual expectations in the movie theaters. Unilumin is happy about the result and indicates that there are more to come in the near future.
Dedicated in the LED display industry for decades, Macroblock, as a leading LED driver IC company, have many technology breakthroughs recognized by customers. To conform to the DCI specifications for LED cinema screens, Macroblock’s 16-bit grayscale, high refresh rate LED display driver ICs, such as MBI5850 and MBI5264, are the best choices. Last but not least, Macroblock’s common cathode driving architectures are patented in the U.S., freeing them from the application and market restrictions of legacy patents to achieve 16-bit grayscale and high refresh rate image quality on common cathode LED displays. These patented technologies have been applied in Macroblock’s common cathode LED display driver ICs, MBI5754 and upcoming new products, which also comply with the rigorous DCI specifications for high-end cinema market.