Digital Ice

Digital ICE Scratch Correction Using Infrared-enabled Scanners

Published on website: November 18, 2009
Categories: Digital ICE , Gabriel Fielding , Lab and Post Production , The StoryBoard Blog

A huge number of movies and television shows are held in studio vaults and in television archives.  With high-definition television and high-bandwidth connections to the home, there has never been more demand for bringing content out of storage and making it available to consumers.  Old films have very high resolution and can be easily scanned and compressed for digital distribution.  But before this can happen, minor imperfections such as scratches and dust need to be removed to meet rigorous image quality standards set by the studios and networks.

Film scanners equipped with infrared (IR) illumination and Kodak’s Digital ICE software can automatically detect and correct scratches and dust so they are invisible to even the most critical viewers. The Kodak Digital Ice software operates by analyzing the familiar red, green, and blue channels along with the extra IR channel to provide an accurate per-pixel defect matte.  The defect matte is used to identify which pixels to adjust so that scratched pixels can be restored nearly to their original values.