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Are we ready for lossless video?

Are state of the art video compressors and cheap, dense storage sufficient to distribute lossless video to consumers?

Uncompressed: This is raw video with no processing
Lossless compression: This is video which was been compressed while keeping the integrity of the original material 100% intact
Lossy compression: This is video which reduces the size on disk while minimizing the observable (to the human eye) impact of the content

Movie Length: 3hrs (10,800s)

  • DVD Media: 4.7GB
  • Ultra HD Bluray Media: 66GB
  • HDD: 5000GB

The last is for movie theaters.

Ultra HD Bluray Video Format: 24bit color depth, 4096x2160 frame size, 60 frames per second, no chroma subsampling

Compression Ratios

  • Uncompressed: 1.0x
  • Lossless compression: 1.75x
  • Lossy compression: ~260x

Video Bandwidth = (bits/pixel)*(pixels/frame)*(frames/second)
Total Storage Size = Video Bandwidth * Movie Length

Video Bandwidth = 24 * 4096 * 2160 * 60 = 12.74Gb/s = 1.59GB/s
Total Storage Size = 1.59GB/s * 10,800s = 17,199GB

Compression Type Storage Size #DVD #Ultra HD Bluray #HDD
Raw 17.2TB 3659 261 4
Lossless (FFV1) 9.8TB 2091 149 2
Lossy (H.265) 66GB 14 1 1

It would be wasteful to send uncompressed data, but It seems reasonable for studios to ship movies on a couple HDD, provided they are recycled. But for the consumer it is still completely prohibitive to use either HDD or Ultra HD Bluray discs. Algorithm improvements but possible double or triple lossless compression, but it would still require at least two more revolutionary advancements in storage (ie 10x like DVD->Bluray) to make this possible and it isn't clear there it would make a huge difference in performance. Coupled with the advancements I expect in frame rate, bit depth and resolution I'd expect one or two more ten fold improvements on top of that.


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