Scenarist BD

Professional authoring standard

Scenarist is a comprehensive suite of powerful Blu-ray Disc creation tools that provide your business with everything you need to deliver stunning Blu-ray Disc titles.

Integrated Production Suite
Production and creation efficiency is key to your business's profitability and creativity. The Scenarist Workgroup has been designed to provide businesses with an efficient and powerful production workflow, featuring an integrated Blu-ray Disc menu design, encoding, and authoring workflow that ensures you deliver the feature-rich Blu-ray Disc titles your clients demand.

The Choice of Hollywood
The Scenarist Workgroup is the choice of Hollywood's top Blu-ray Disc creation and production facilities due to its unique combination of powerful authoring and a tried-and-tested multiplexing engine that powers the majority of commercial Blu-ray Disc releases.

Blu-ray 3D Support
Encode stunning high definition Blu-ray 3D video streams (delivering full 1080p to each eye), author incredible Blu-ray 3D titles with 3D pop-up menus and subtitles, and emulate Blu-ray 3D titles instantly.

Creative Control
Create Blu-ray titles that set you apart from the competition. Scenarist provides creative professionals with non-abstracted direct control over the creative behavior of their Blu-ray titles with unique cell-level access to the Blu-ray Disc command set.

Advanced Interactivity and Pop-up Menu Control
Distinguish your Blu-ray titles. Create an unlimited number of pop-up menu pages with animated buttons and fade, wipe, scroll in/out menu effects.

Interactive Menu Design with Scenarist Designer PS
A powerful Photoshop® plug-in that puts Blu-ray menu creation and design where it belongs - in the hands of the graphic designer - and enables an efficient and productive Blu-ray workflow free from menu layout errors.

Cinematic Encoding with CineVision®
Hollywood-proven Blu-ray Disc encoding with comprehensive codec support (AVC, VC-1 and MPEG-2), built-in Emmy Award-winning video processing from Digital Vision, unique segment encoding, ExpressQC segment detection, and much more.

Advanced Blu-ray Disc Creation with Scenarist®
Scenarist Blu-ray Disc Creation provides you with unhindered access to the full Blu-ray Disc specification giving you the flexibility to distinguish your business and create blockbuster titles. Capabilities include BD-J support, BD-Live title management, picture-in-picture support, multi-page Blu-ray menus, distributed multiplexing, and seamless multi-story.

Deliver with Scenarist QC
QC your finished Blu-ray titles straight from hard drive using Scenarist QC, featuring unique debugging capabilities and playback logging.

Custom Template Efficiency
Scenarist delivers your client's Blu-ray Disc titles faster than any other Blu-ray Disc production system thanks to its unique menu creation and templating workflow.

Professional Support
Every Blu-ray Disc creation system is backed up with in-house training for all your staff and expert 24-hour technical support from Blu-ray Disc experts..

Scalable Production Workgroups

All-in-one Production Workgroups
The Scenarist Workgroup includes everything you need to launch your Blu-ray production business including: menu creation, video encoding, authoring, and emulation.

Workflow Focused Workgroups
As your business grows your Scenarist workgroup can be customized to meet your changing workflow. A Scenarist workgroup can be spread across network connected task-focused workstations that each concentrate on one stage in the workflow, increasing your production efficiency, eliminating bottlenecks, and reducing turnaround times.

Scalable Solutions That Grow With Your Business
The Scenarist workgroup has been designed to grow with your business. We've made it incredibly easy to add additional capacity to your workgroup at any time as well as add features to any part of your encoding and authoring station to meet client demand.

Unbeatable Menus

Scenarist Designer PS Photoshop® Plug-in
The ultimate menu creation workflow. Design, layout, and quickly export your menu and button designs from Adobe Photoshop directly to Scenarist. Scenarist Designer ensures your Blu-ray production workflow is fast and free from errors.

Built-in Pop-up Menu Effects Editor
Easily animate your pop-up menus using Scenarist's Effects Editor. Animate attributes like palettes (for fades), positioning, and cropping to set your titles apart from the competition.

Independent In and Out Effects
Specify different customized in and out animations for your pop-up menus to give your titles a unique look and feel.

Button Effects and Sounds
Create compelling transitions and dynamic menus with in and out effects and button sounds.

Animated Buttons
Bring your menus to life with animated buttons in normal, selected, and activated states.

Multi-page Menu Creation
Create pop-up menus with multiple levels to allow viewers to drill down to detailed options and extra bonus content.

Blu-ray 3D Support

Blu-ray 3D Video Encoding
Encode 3D MVC (Multi-view Coding) streams for use on your Blu-ray 3D titles. CineVision provides precise control over every aspect of your 3D encodes.

3D Pop-up Menus
Author interactive Blu-ray 3D titles with pop-up menus that appear at a specified depth on top of your 3D video.

3D Subtitle Support
Include Blu-ray 3D subtitles on your projects with individual depth offsets for each subtitle.

3D BD-J support
Include customized and highly interactive 3D BD-J content on your Blu-ray 3D titles.

Advanced Blu-ray 3D Emulation
Emulate and de-bug your Blu-ray 3D titles straight from hard drive using Scenarist QC without having to burn a disc.

Blockbuster Encoding

CineVision is The Number 1 Choice for Blu-ray Encoding
Every Scenarist workgroup includes Sonic CineVision, the most widely used professional Blu-ray Disc encoder used by top authoring facilities around the world.

Comprehensive HD Codec Support
CineVision offers complete support for all three of the next-generation HD video codecs used for BD: AVC (H.264), VC-1, and MPEG-2. And for DVD, CineVision encodes SD as well, so you're covered for all of your clients' needs.

Advanced Segment Encoding
CineVision's ability to retroactively optimize selected segments is a huge time-saver, allowing you to fine-tune completed encodes without redoing an entire program. You can even create and compare multiple versions of any segment.

Fast Encoding Workflow
CineVision matches its encoding quality with lightening fast efficiency. You can use all common video formats as an input, encode with confidence using CineVision's built-in format legalization rulebooks, and pre-filter your video within CineVision using award winning DVO plug-ins from Digital Vision. All combining to ensure your encoding workflow is as efficient as possible without compromising quality.

Unlimited Authoring Power

Comprehensive Blu-ray Disc Specification Support
With Scenarist, the only limit to your title features is your creativity. Scenarist provides support for 999 movie objects, 9 video angles, 32 button states (per button group), 256 button groups per page, 1001 titles, 2000 playlists, and 4096 GPR registers.

Detailed Access to the Blu-ray Disc Specification
Comprehensive and direct access to every aspect of the Blu-ray Disc specification including video titles, navigation commands, and the full complement of GPR registers.

Support For All Next-Generation Video Codecs
Comprehensive support for all three Blu-ray Disc video codecs: AVC, VC-1, and MPEG-2.

Comprehensive Subtitle Support
Include up to 255 subtitle streams on your Blu-ray titles.

Out-of-mux Menu Support
Create 'always available' pop-up menus and special features by utilizing out-of-mux interactive graphics.

Multi-Angle Video Support
Create dynamic presentations with the full specification allowance of 9 simultaneous video streams.

Slideshow Support
Create high definition browseable or timed slideshows with un-interrupted audio.

AACS Content Protection Support
Secure your Blu-ray Disc titles with AACS Content Protection.

Managed Copy Support
Comply with the latest specification requirements for Managed Copy. Scenarist allows you to customize all on-disc parameters for Managed Copy, including Server URL and ISAN number.

Advanced BD-J and BD-Live Support

Drag-and-drop BD-J Creation
Easily integrate BD-J content into your Blu-ray titles. The BD-J specification enables a range of additional interactive capabilities including access to player storage, bookmarking, and network features using BD-Live.

BD-J Signing using Scenarist Safeguard
An essential tool for BD-J authors, Scenarist Safeguard provides professional-level JAR (BD-J) signing to ensure your BD-J content functions correctly on playback.

BD-Live Support
Integrate network-aware BD-Live applications into your Blu-ray titles to integrate features such as video downloads; RSS, twitter and facebook feeds; and much more.

BD-Live Project Management
With BD-Live, a title's content can change after your title has been released. Scenarist's Virtual File System (VFS) manager enables you to efficiently manage the on-line content used by the title's BD-Live applications.

Efficiency and Productivity Tools

Custom Template Workflow
Save time by using previous projects as a template for new jobs. Scenarist's unique templating workflow speeds up title production significantly - a huge time saver for multi-disc box sets or multi-disc contracts for the same client that share a common navigation structure.

Network Distributed Multiplexing
Scenarist's multiplexing engine allows multiplexing tasks to be distributed across facility networks. Sharing multiplexing tasks across a network decreases multiplexing times and ensures authoring stations aren't tied up for hours multiplexing.

Blu-ray Disc Emulation

Professional Blu-ray Disc Emulation with Scenarist QC
Scenarist QC enables Blu-ray Disc authors and BD-J programmers to preview and debug titles directly from a computer's hard drive, saving significant time and resources compared to burning productions to BD-R for testing.

Extensive Parameter and Event Logging
Debug Blu-ray titles using Scenarist QC's event log to track GPRs, PSRs, NaviCmds, key events, stream info, UOP masking, user operations, HDMV and JVM playback info, and any captured errors, all using Scenarist QC's easy-to-read color-coded log file.

Log Data Filtering
Use Scenarist QC's log data filtering to drill down to the most pertinent debug information by filtering out any unneeded debug messages.

BD-J Debugging
Scenarist QC's debug Java Virtual Machine (JVM) allows remote debugging from any BD-J compatible Java IDE like Eclipse or NetBeans. BD-J programmers are able to set breakpoints and source code 'watches' to enable them to step through code while testing BD-J applications in the context of the completed BD-ROM.

NaviCmd Debug Support
Scenarist QC allows you to breakpoint at specified NaviCmds. Using prebuilt or custom criteria, you can break on all, certain groups, or specific NaviCmds. At these breakpoints, playback of the project suspends, giving you time to inspect the QC log and analyze what has happened inside the player.

Proven Technology and Professional Support

Hollywood-standard Multiplexing Engine
Scenarist's multiplexer - an essential component for reliable playback - is used to deliver the vast majority of commercially available Blu-ray titles.

Expert SonicCare™ Support
Every Sonic system is backed up with expert level support from Blu-ray specialists. SonicCare includes hands-on training for all staff, access to expert support to ensure you hit your deadlines, and software update subscription.


Please check the Scenarist Comparison Matrix to see which features are included in each Scenarist package.

Video Support

  • AVC (H.264) Main/High Profiles, Levels 3, 3.1, 3.2, 4, and 4.1
  • VC-1 Advanced Profile, Levels 2 and 3
  • MPEG-2

Primary Audio Support

  • DTS®
  • DTS-HD High Resolution Audio
  • DTS-HD Master Audio
  • Dolby® Digital
  • Dolby Digital Plus
  • Dolby TrueHD
  • Linear PCM
    • 48kHz, 96kHz, and 192kHz
    • 16 bits, 20 bits, 24 bits per sample
    • 2, 4, 6 or 8 channels

Secondary Audio Support (Picture-in-Picture)

  • Dolby Digital Plus
  • DTS-HD LBR (Low Bit rate)

Interactive Audio Support (Button Sounds and BD-J applications)

  • Linear PCM (48kHz, 16-bits, mono or stereo)

Still Image Support

  • PNG (256-color, .png)
  • TIFF (.tif)
  • JPG (.jpg)
  • BMP (.bmp)

Font Support

  • Open Type Fonts (.otf)

Subtitle Support

  • Presentation Graphics
  • Text subtitles
  • Sony BDN subtitle format

Menu Support

  • Page In and Out Effects (Fade, Wipe, Scroll)
  • Pop-up interactive menu graphics
  • 'Always-on' interactive menu graphics
  • Out-of-mux interactive graphics
  • Animated buttons
  • Button effects
  • Button sounds

Graphics Preparation

  • Scenarist Designer PS (Photoshop® Plug-in)
  • Photoshop CS support
  • Automated 8-bit graphics optimization
  • Automated PNG creation (from layered PSD files)
  • XML export from Scenarist Designer PS to Scenarist BD

Specification Support

  • BD Specification 1.0 Support
  • Profile Support
  • Standard Profile Support 1.0
  • Bonus View Profile Support 1.1
  • BD-Live Profile Support 2.0
  • 999 Supported Movie Objects
  • 9 video angles
  • 999 Playitems per Playlist
  • 32 Buttons per Button Overlap Group
  • 256 Button Overlap Groups per page
  • 1001 Titles
  • 2000 Playlists
  • 4096 General Purpose Registers
  • Graphics stream support
  • Slideshow support (MPEG-2, AVC and VC-1 still encoder included)
  • Managed Copy Support

BD-J Support

  • BD-J API libraries for compiling BD-J code
  • BD-J Object Creation
  • Easily drag and drop BDJO and JAR files into Scenarist
  • BD-J title multiplexing and playback
  • Tutorials including BD-J sample code
  • BD-J debug cycle (disc image)
  • Third-party Java IDE support

Blu-ray 3D Support

  • MVC (Multi-view coding) video support
  • 3D Clip and Playlist creation
  • Pop-up menus with 3D depth offset
  • Subtitles with 3D depth offset (Sony BDN 1.0)
  • 3D BD-J support
  • Profile 5 NaviCommand support
  • Blu-ray 3D emulation (Scenarist QC)

Content Protection

  • AACS Support

Output Options

  • Sony CMF (Cutting Master Format)
  • Distributed network optimized multiplexing

Encoding Support (see CineVision for details)

  • AVC, VC-1, and MPEG-2 Support
  • Blu-ray 3D MVC (Multi-view coding) Support
  • Blu-ray Disc Primary and Secondary Video Support
  • DVD-Video Support
  • Built-in format legalization rulebooks for Blu-ray Disc and DVD-Video
  • Digital Vision DVO filtering set
  • Input support includes: QuickTime®, AVI, AviSynth Script, DPX image sequence, Planar YUV
  • Built-in encoding presets
  • Encode Modes: One- and two-pass VBR, one-pass CBR
  • Segment Encoding
  • Multi-take segment auditioning
  • CineAgent Distributed Encoding Support
  • Express QC™ Segment Marking
  • Batch Encoding Support
  • Detailed movie timeline for QC analysis
  • Varispeed playback and syncronized source/encode auditioning

Blu-ray Disc Emulation (see Scenarist QC for details)

  • Emulate from hard drive or BD-R
  • Profile 1.0, 1.1, 2.0, and 5.0 (Blu-ray 3D) emulation
  • Parameter and Event Logging (GPRs, PSRs, NaviCmds, key events, stream info, and UOPs)
  • Log Data Filtering
  • BD-J Debugging
  • NaviCmd Debug Support

System Requirements

Supported Operating Systems

  • Windows® XP Professional Service Pack 3 (32-bit and 64-bit)
  • Windows Vista (all Editions, 32-bit and 64-bit)
  • Windows 7 (all Editions, 32- and 64-bit versions)
  • Windows operating systems (above) also supported on Apple hardware using Bootcamp

Minimum System Requirements

  • Dual-Core 2GHz processor (multiple processors/cores and higher clock-speeds recommended)
  • Microsoft® Windows Media Player 10 Series
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 7.0 or later
  • Microsoft DirectX 9.0c
  • CD-ROM or DVD-ROM drive
  • Monitor with 1600x1200 screen resolution (1920x1200 recommended) and 32-bit color support
  • 800 MB of hard drive space on system drive for Sonic application and related files
  • USB port for security dongle

Recommended Graphics Adapters

  • nVidia GeForce 8800 GT
    Note: Newer nVidia GeForce boards with 512 MB (or more) memory should also deliver satisfactory playback performance.

System Requirements for Blu-ray 3D production
Following additional requirements apply to Scenarist BD systems with the Blu-ray 3D authoring option.

  • Supported Operating System: Windows 7 is required for Scenarist systems with the Blu-ray 3D option
  • Recommended Graphics Adapters: For Scenarist systems with the Blu-ray 3D option the nVidia 3D Vision hardware is recommended. Please consult the nVidia website for their latest hardware supporting Blu-ray 3D playback

Scenarist BD Overview Brochure   
Professional authoring standard

What's so good about Blu-ray Disc's menus?
Unlike DVD, viewers don't have to stop the video playing to view the disc's menu. Blu-ray Disc's menus pop-up on top of the video, enabling viewers to access chapters, bonus material, and subtitle/audio tracks without stopping playback.

Menus can pop-up and enter the display from any direction - top, bottom, left, right - or simply appear. It's also possible to use independent in and out effects - like scroll, fade, and wipe - to show and hide the menu when the viewer presses the menu button.

What's possible with Blu-ray Disc's menu buttons?

  • Buttons can be any shape or size and full color
  • Button can be animated. For example, a button's selected state could be an animation (similar to an animated GIF used on Web sites)
  • Sounds can be associated with buttons and their states.
  • It is possible to animate transitions between menus.
  • Buttons can be shown or hidden at any point. Such a scheme allows authors to create hierarchical menus, only showing the detail when the user selects a particular option.

Do I need to use BD-J?
It depends on the functionality you're looking to achieve. For a majority of titles that feature pop-up menus and picture-in-picture, the answer is no. In fact, using BD-J for simple pop-up menu titles can sometimes cause playback problems and annoyances (like loading times) that are avoidable using Scenarist.

Do I need BD-J for menus?
No. BD-J is required for advanced features that access a Blu-ray player's storage or network connection (using BD-Live).

When do I need to use BD-J?
You need to use BD-J if you're looking to use the player's network connection (for BD-Live functionality) or access the player's internal memory (persistent storage).

Can I use BD-J content from third-party tools?
Yes. Scenarist's BD-J support is universal so you can use BD-J Objects (BDJOs) from any third-party tool. Scenarist also includes a signing tool - Scenarist Safeguard - for signing your JAR files.

How does Scenarist's Distributed Multiplexing work?
Multiplexing a 50GB (dual layer) title can take some time using a single machine. Distributed multiplexing speeds up the multiplexing process by sharing the task across multiple PCs. Any PC on your network can be used to share the multiplexing workload, speeding up your workflow. The more PCs you use, the faster the multiplexing takes. The other advantage of distributed multiplexing is that the authoring station is free to continue authoring after the mux has been initiated.

Does BD-Live enable me to connect to the Internet?
The technically correct answer is no. For example, it's not possible to access the public version of using BD-Live. BD-Live enables authors to use a Blu-ray player's network connection to access BD-Live content making Blu-ray a dynamic carrier that can change over time. BD-Live content - like trailers and additional multimedia content - is stored on specific BD-Live servers which have to be configured and hosted in a specific way - very different the regular everyday Internet we are all familiar with.

Does Scenarist support BD-Live?
Yes. Scenarist let's you add BD-Live content to your titles. It also enables you to manage a title's Virtual File System (VFS), which is the online BD-Live content, enabling you to effectively alter a title's content after it has been replicated and released.

What's so good about Scenarist's templating workflow?
Scenarist's unique templating workflow enables you to use any Scenarist project as a template - a starting point for a new project. For example, if you're authoring a Blu-ray box set, or a series of titles for a particular client, you can use the first title you author as a template for subsequent titles. The time savings can be huge. For example, sometimes the first disc can take up to two weeks to author (if it's complex), subsequent discs can then be created in a day by using Scenarist's templating capabilities. This feature saves you time and money which increases your efficiency and profitability.

How does Scenarist's templating work?
A large part of Scenarist's templating efficiency lies with Scenarist Designer PS, the Photoshop plug-in included with every Scenarist system. Scenarist Designer PS creates a special package - called a Designer file - which includes all of the graphics and positioning information for Blu-ray menus. It's possible to swap the Designer file (and therefore all of the associated graphics and positioning data) very quickly and easily - effectively changing a title's menu design at the click of the button. It's also very easy to swap-out a project's video and audio files in Scenarist. These capabilities combine to make it very quick and easy to swap all of the underlying content in a title - menus, video, and audio - and create a whole new title without having to reauthor the title's navigation and interactivity.

What role does Scenarist Designer PS play in the authoring workflow?
Scenarist Designer PS is a Photoshop plug-in used by menu designers. The great thing about Scenarist Designer is that it packages menu designs (graphics and positioning information) so that authors don't have to worry about positioning menu graphics and button positions. Authors simply select the Designer package created by the graphic artist and the layout of the menus is handled automatically. This workflow removes human layout errors and also makes design revisions incredibly efficient and fast as designers can update their Photoshop file and pass the author a revised designer package which is then swapped out at the click of a button.

What does Scenarist's multiplexer do?
Scenarist's multiplexer is used to format/multiplex your finished project ready for emulating, burning to BD-R, or premastering for replication. It takes all of the project elements - like video, audio, menus, and navigation - and converts them to a legal set of multiplexed files that can be read by a Blu-ray Disc player.

Why is Scenarist's multiplexer so important?
Scenarist's multiplexer ensures your title will playback successfully on the widest range of players. Scenarist's multiplexer is so reliable that it has been used to deliver the vast majority of commercially available Blu-ray Disc titles.

What are the different player profiles?

  • Profile 1.0 - This profile was discontinued in 2007. The player's functionality was limited (secondary audio and Java).
  • Profile 1.1: Bonus View - This profile is the minimum requirement for all Blu-ray Disc players. This profile does not support BD-Live (network connectivity)
  • Profile 2.0: BD-Live - This profile is optional. It includes local storage in the player and a network connection for BD-Live.

Does Blu-ray use pre- and post-commands like DVD-Video?
Yes, but they work a little differently with Blu-ray. Blu-ray uses movie and button objects as command sequences. For example, 'play playlist' initiates playback of the video. Anything before this command in a movie object or button object will act as the DVD equivalent of a pre-command. Anything after this in a movie object will behave as the DVD equivalent of a post-command.

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