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Network Working Group                                           D. Tynan
Request for Comments: 2431                                Claddagh Films
Category: Standards Track                                   October 1998

              RTP Payload Format for BT.656 Video Encoding

Status of this Memo

   This document specifies an Internet standards track protocol for the
   Internet community, and requests discussion and suggestions for
   improvements.  Please refer to the current edition of the "Internet
   Official Protocol Standards" (STD 1) for the standardization state
   and status of this protocol.  Distribution of this memo is unlimited.

Copyright Notice

   Copyright (C) The Internet Society (1998).  All Rights Reserved.


   This document specifies the RTP payload format for encapsulating ITU
   Recommendation BT.656-3 video streams in the Real-Time Transport
   Protocol (RTP).  Each RTP packet contains all or a portion of one
   scan line as defined by ITU Recommendation BT.601-5, and includes
   fragmentation, decoding and positioning information.

1. Introduction

   This document describes a scheme to packetize uncompressed, studio-
   quality video streams as defined by BT.656 for transport using RTP
   [1].  A BT.656 video stream is defined by ITU-R Recommendation
   BT.656-3 [2], as a means of interconnecting digital television
   equipment operating on the 525-line or 625-line standards, and
   complying with the 4:2:2 encoding parameters as defined in ITU-R
   Recommendation BT.601-5 (formerly CCIR-601) [3], Part A.

   RTP is defined by the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) to
   provide end-to-end network transport functions suitable for
   applications transmitting real-time data over multicast or unicast
   network services.  The complete specification of RTP for a particular
   application requires the RTP protocol document [1], a profile
   specification document [4], and a payload format specification.  This
   document is intended to serve as the payload format specification for
   studio-quality video streams.

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RFC 2431             RTP Payload Format for BT.656          October 1998

   The key words "MUST", "MUST NOT", "REQUIRED", "SHALL", "SHALL NOT",
   document are to be interpreted as described in RFC 2119 [5].

2. Definitions

   For the purposes of this document, the following definitions apply:

   Y: An 8-bit or 10-bit coded "luminance" sample.  Luminance in this
   context refers to the BT.601-5 [3] definition which is not the same
   as a true CIE luminance value.  The value of "luminance" refers
   specifically to video luma. However, in order to avoid confusion with
   the BT.656 and BT.601 standards, the video luma value is referenced
   in this document as luminance.  Each value has 220 quantization
   levels with the black level corresponding to level 16 and the peak
   white level corresponding to 235.

   Cb, Cr: An 8-bit or 10-bit coded color-difference sample (as per
   BT.601-5).  Each color-difference value has 225 quantization levels
   in the centre part of the quantization scale with a color-difference
   of zero having an encoded value of 128.

   True Black: BT.601-5 defines a true black level as the quad-sample
   sequence 0x80, 0x10, 0x80, 0x10, representing color-difference values
   of 128 (0x80) and a luminance value of 16 (0x10).

   SAV, EAV: Video timing reference codes which appear at the start and
   end of a BT.656 scan line.

3. Payload Design

   ITU Recommendation BT.656-3 defines a schema for the digital
   interconnection of television video signals in conjunction with
   BT.601-5 which defines the digital representation of the original
   analog signal.  While BT.601-5 refers to images with or without color
   subsampling, the interconnection standard (BT.656-3) specifically
   requires 4:2:2 subsampling. This specification also requires 4:2:2
   subsampling such that the luminance stream occupies twice the
   bandwidth of each of the two color-difference streams.  For normal
   4:3 aspect ratio images, this results in 720 luminance samples per
   scan line, and 360 samples of each of the two chrominance channels.
   The total number of samples per scan line in this case is 1440.
   While this payload format specification can accomodate various image
   sizes and frame rates, only those in accordance with BT.601-5 are
   currently supported.

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RFC 2431             RTP Payload Format for BT.656          October 1998

   Due to the lack of any form of video compression within the payload
   and sampling-rate compliance with BT.601-5, the resultant video
   stream can be considered "studio quality".  However, such a stream
   can require approximately 20 megabytes per second of network
   bandwidth.  In order to maximize packet size within a given MTU, and
   to optimize scan line decoding, each video scan line is encoded
   within one or more RTP packets.

   To allow for scan line synchronization, each packet includes certain
   flag bits (as defined in BT.656-3) and a unique scan line number.
   The SAV and EAV timing reference codes are removed. Furthermore, no
   line blanking samples are included, so no ancillary data can be
   included in the line blanking period.  It is the responsibility of
   the receiver to generate the timing reference codes, and to insert
   the correct number of line blanking samples.

   Similarly, there is no requirement that the frame blanking samples be
   provided.  However, it is possible to include frame blanking samples
   if such samples contain relevant information, such as a vertical-
   interlace time code (VITC), or teletext data.  In the absence of
   frame blanking samples, the receiver MUST generate true black levels
   as defined above, to complete the correct number of scan lines per
   field.  If frame blanking samples are provided, they MUST be copied
   without modification into the resultant BT.656-3 stream.

   Scan lines MUST be sent in sequential order.  Error concealment for
   missing scan lines or fragments of scan lines is at the discretion of
   the receiver.

   Both 8-bit and 10-bit quantization types as defined by BT.601-5 are
   supported.  10-bit samples are considered to have two extra bits of
   fixed-point precision such that a binary value of 10111110.11
   represents a sample value of 190.75.  Using 8-bit quantization, this
   would give a sample value of 190.  An application receiving 8-bit
   samples for a 10-bit device MUST consider the sample as reflecting
   the most-significant 8 bits.  The two least-significant bits SHOULD
   be set to zero.  Similarly, an application sending 8-bit samples from
   a 10-bit device MUST drop the two least-significant bits.  For a 10-
   bit quantization payload, each pair of samples MUST be encoded into a
   40-bit word (five octets) prior to transmission, as specified in
   Section 6.

   To allow for scan lines with octet lengths larger than the path
   maximum transmission unit (MTU), a scan offset field is included in
   the packet header.  Applications SHOULD attempt path MTU discovery
   [6] and fragment scan lines into multiple packets no larger than the

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RFC 2431             RTP Payload Format for BT.656          October 1998

   Fragmentation MUST occur on a sample-pair boundary, such that the
   chrominance and luminance values are not split across packets.  For
   8-bit quantization this gives a four-octet alignment, and a five-
   octet alignment for 10-bit quantization.  As a result, the scan
   offset refers not to the byte offset within the payload, but the
   sample-pair offset.

4. Usage of RTP

   Due to the unreliable nature of the RTP protocol, and the lack of an
   orderly delivery mechanism, each packet contains enough information
   to form a single scan line without reference to prior scan lines or
   prior frames.  In addition to the RTP header, a fixed length payload
   header is included in each packet.  This header is four octets in

       0                   1                   2                   3
       0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1
      |                           RTP Header                          |
      |                         Payload Header                        |
      |                          Payload Data                         |
      |                                .                              |
      |                                .                              |

4.1. RTP Header usage

   Each RTP packet starts with a fixed RTP header.  The following fields
   of the RTP fixed header are used for BT.656-3 encapsulation:

   Marker bit (M): The Marker bit of the RTP header is set to 1 for the
   last packet of a frame (or the last fragment of the last scan line if
   fragmented), and set to 0 on all other packets.

   Payload Type (PT): The Payload Type indicates the use of the payload
   format defined in this document.  A profile MAY assign a payload type
   value for this format either statically or dynamically as described
   in RFC 1890 [4].

   Timestamp: The RTP Timestamp encodes the sampling instant of the
   video frame currently being rendered.  All scan line packets within
   the same frame will have the same timestamp.  The timestamp SHOULD
   refer to the 'Ov' field synchronization point of the first field.
   For the payload format defined by this document, the RTP timestamp is
   based on a 90kHz clock.

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RFC 2431             RTP Payload Format for BT.656          October 1998

5. Payload Header

   The payload header is a fixed four-octet header broken down as

       0                   1                   2                   3
       0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1
      |F|V| Type  |P| Z |     Scan Line (SL)    |  Scan Offset (SO)   |

   F: 1 bit
   When 0, indicates the first field of a frame (line 4 through 265
   inclusive for Type=0 or 2, and line 1 through 312 inclusive for Type=1
   or 3).  Any other scan line is considered a component of the second
   field, and the F bit will be set to 1.  This bit is copied directly
   from the BT.656-compliant stream by the transmitter, and inserted into
   the stream by the receiver.

   V: 1 bit
   When 1, indicates that the scan line is part of the vertical interval.
   Should always be 0 unless frame blanking data is sent.  In which case,
   the V bit SHOULD be set to 1 for scan lines which do not form an
   integral part of the image. This bit is copied directly from the
   BT.656-compliant stream by the transmitter, and inserted into the
   stream by the receiver.  For receivers which do not receive scan lines
   during the vertical interval, BT.656 vertical interval data MUST be
   generated by repeating the quad-sample sequence 0x80, 0x10, 0x80,
   0x10, representing a true black level.

   Type: 4 bits
   This field indicates the type of frame encoding within the payload.
   It MUST remain unchanged for all scan lines within the same frame.
   Currently only four types of encoding are defined.  These are as

      0 - NTSC (13.5MHz sample rate; 720 samples per line; 60 fields
          per second; 525 lines per frame)

      1 - PAL (13.5MHz sample rate; 720 samples per line; 50 fields
          per second; 625 lines per frame)

      2 - High Definition NTSC (18MHz sample rate; 1144 samples per
          line; 60 fields per second; 525 lines per frame)

      3 - High Definition PAL (18MHz sample rate; 1152 samples per
          line; 50 fields per second; 625 lines per frame)

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RFC 2431             RTP Payload Format for BT.656          October 1998

   Further encodings can only be defined through the Internet Assigned
   Numbers Authority (IANA).  For more information refer to Section 8,
   "IANA Considerations".

   P: 1 bit
   Indicates the required sample quantization size.  When 0, the payload
   is comprised of 8-bit samples.  Otherwise, it carries 10-bit samples.
   This bit MUST remain unchanged for all scan lines within the same

   Z: 2 bits
   Reserved for future use.  Must be set to zero by the transmitter and
   ignored by the receiver.

   Scan Line (SL): 12 bits
   Indicates the scan line encapsulated in the payload.  Valid values
   range from 1 through 625 inclusive. If no frame blanking data is
   being transmitted, only scan lines 23 through 310 inclusive, and
   lines 336 through 623 inclusive SHOULD be sent in the case of Type=1
   or 3.  For 525/60 encoding (Type=0 or 2), scan lines 10 through 263
   inclusive and lines 273 through 525 SHOULD be transmitted.

   If a receiver is generating a BT.656-3 data stream directly from this
   packet, the F and V bits MUST be copied from the header rather than
   being generated implicitly from the scan line number.  In the event
   of a conflict, the F and V bits have precedence.

   Scan Offset (SO): 11 bits
   Indicates the offset within the scan line for application-level
   fragmentation.  After doing PMTU discovery, if the path MTU is less
   than the required size for one complete scan line, the data SHOULD be
   fragmented such that a given RTP packet does not exceed the allowable
   MTU.  The offset for the first packet of a scan line MUST be set to
   zero.  The scan offset refers to the sample-pair offset within the
   scan such that for a scan line width of 720, the maximum scan offset
   is 359.

6. Payload Format

   In keeping with the 4:2:2 color subsampling of BT.656 and BT.601,
   each pair of color-difference samples will be intermixed with two
   luminance samples.  As per BT.656, the format for transmission SHALL
   be Cb, Y, Cr, Y.  The following is a representation of a 720 sample
   packet with 8-bit quantization:

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RFC 2431             RTP Payload Format for BT.656          October 1998

       0                   1                   2                   3
       0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1
      |      Cb0      |      Y0       |      Cr0      |      Y1       |
      |      Cb1      |      Y2       |      Cr1      |      Y3       |
      |     Cb359     |     Y718      |     Cr359     |     Y719      |

   1144 and 1152 sample packets SHOULD increase the packet size
   accordingly while maintaining the sample order.

   For 10-bit quantization, each group of four samples MUST be encoded
   into a 40-bit word (five octets) prior to transmission.  The sample
   order is identical to that for 8-bit quantization.  The following is
   a representation of a 720 sample packet with 10-bit quantization:

               0         1         2         3
               0 2 4 6 8 0 2 4 6 8 0 2 4 6 8 0 2 4 6 8
              |   Cb0   |   Y0    |   Cr0   |   Y1    |
              |   Cb1   |   Y2    |   Cr1   |   Y3    |
              |  Cb359  |  Y718   |  Cr359  |  Y719   |
                (Note that the word width is 40 bits)
      Octets: |   0   |   1   |   2   |   3   |   4   |

   The octets shown in these diagrams are transmitted in network byte
   order, that is, left-to-right as shown.

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RFC 2431             RTP Payload Format for BT.656          October 1998

7. Security Considerations

   RTP packets using the payload format defined in this specification
   are subject to the security considerations discussed in the RTP
   specification [1].  This implies that confidentiality of the media
   streams is achieved by encryption.  Because the payload format is
   arranged end-to-end, encryption MAY be performed after encapsulation
   so there is no conflict between the two operations.

   This payload type does not exhibit any significant non-uniformity in
   the receiver side computational complexity for packet processing to
   cause a potential denial-of-service threat.

8. IANA Considerations

   The four encoding types defined by this document relate to specific
   schema defined by ITU-R Recommendation BT.656-3.  Future revisions of
   the recommendation may create further encoding types which need to be
   supported over RTP. The "Type" field is four bits wide allowing for a
   total of up to sixteen possible encodings, with twelve currently
   reserved for future use.  Due to the small number of possible
   encodings and given that it is very unlikely that future revisions of
   BT.656 will introduce any new schema, requests to extend the Type
   field MUST be vetted by the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority.
   Furthermore, implementors SHOULD check the IANA repository for new
   definitions of the Type field in order to comply with this document.

   Applications for a new Type value MUST be submitted to the IANA and
   include the requestors name and contact information, the reason for
   requesting a new Type and references to appropriate standards, such
   as an updated version of ITU-R Recommendation BT.656.  Furthermore,
   in the unlikely event that the new Type will lessen the security of a
   compliant implementation, such security risk MUST be detailed in the
   application.  The application will be reviewed by a Designated Expert
   and if appropriate, a new Type will be assigned.  This type will be
   listed in the IANA repository for future implementations.

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RFC 2431             RTP Payload Format for BT.656          October 1998

9. References

   [1]   Schulzrinne, H., Casner, S., Frederick, R., and V. Jacobson,
         "RTP: A Transport Protocol for Real-Time Applications", RFC
         1889, January 1996.

   [2]   Interfaces for Digital Component Video Signals in 525-Line and
         625-Line Television Systems operating at the 4:2:2 Level of
         Recommendation ITU-R BT.601 (Part A), ITU-R Recommendation
         BT.656-3, 1995.

   [3]   Studio Encoding Parameters of Digital Television for Standard
         4:3 and Wide-Screen 16:9 Aspect Ratios, ITU-R Recommendation
         BT.601-5, 1995.

   [4]   Schulzrinne, H., "RTP Profile for Audio and Video Conference
         with Minimal Control", RFC 1890, January 1996.

   [5]   Bradner, S., "Key words for use in RFCs to Indicate Requirement
         Levels", BCP 14, RFC 2119, March 1997.

   [6]   Mogul, J., and S. Deering, "Path MTU Discovery", RFC 1191,
         November 1990.

10. Author's Address

   Dermot Tynan
   Claddagh Films Limited
   3 White Oaks
   Clybaun Road

   EMail: dtynan@claddagh.ie
   Phone: +353 91 529944

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RFC 2431             RTP Payload Format for BT.656          October 1998

11.  Full Copyright Statement

   Copyright (C) The Internet Society (1998).  All Rights Reserved.

   This document and translations of it may be copied and furnished to
   others, and derivative works that comment on or otherwise explain it
   or assist in its implementation may be prepared, copied, published
   and distributed, in whole or in part, without restriction of any
   kind, provided that the above copyright notice and this paragraph are
   included on all such copies and derivative works.  However, this
   document itself may not be modified in any way, such as by removing
   the copyright notice or references to the Internet Society or other
   Internet organizations, except as needed for the purpose of
   developing Internet standards in which case the procedures for
   copyrights defined in the Internet Standards process must be
   followed, or as required to translate it into languages other than

   The limited permissions granted above are perpetual and will not be
   revoked by the Internet Society or its successors or assigns.

   This document and the information contained herein is provided on an

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