Automated QC tools

Looking for automated QC tools that can find stuff like black edges in social reframe versions and stuff like that, I know of the tools and tricks in flame but I am looking for something a producer can do first line of defense QC with.

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Have used and tested several over the years. None are perfect by any means and you do need to spend some time setting them up for optimal results.

QScan is by far the cheapest of the solutions actually worth using. It has its bugs but seems pretty solid for doing a lot of the core file integrity stuff and checking for blanking errors. Can also do PSE, loudness tests and the like which is more than you’d need by the sounds of it. I think you can get a 30day full functioning demo to try it out. Last time I looked it was a quarter of the price of the others listed here.

The previous facility I was at used VidChecker which was solid enough. Once again, far from perfect but definitely did the job.

We did a lot of testing of Tektronix Aurora that we were quite impressed with too. In the end we stuck with the devil we knew.

Baton is used in a lot of places but expensive.

There are also a couple of cheaper QC software packages out there but I have no idea what the quality is like.

I have used on and off and know their people. It’s a pretty decent solution, and it’s pay as you go, so good if you only need it here or there. They used to have both on-prem and cloud options, I’ve only ever used the cloud version though.

They have various templates that are easy to customize to your specific needs and go pretty deep on a lot of aspects. I did have some false positives here and there, but I don’t think that’s uncommon.

we are trialing qscan and its pretty OK but it does have some issues

→ its extremely slow even on very very fast machines.

→ it did not catch everything i was able to catch with manual QC.

→ its errored on random files …

All in all 5/10

We use Telestream Vidchecker, pretty phenomenal when is connected to S3.

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All depends on what you’re checking for. Most QC software is CPU only. Yep, as mentioned QScan has bugs and isn’t perfect. To be honest, I’m yet to see a QC solution that I’ve been blown away by that doesn’t miss stuff. Always have had someone do an eyes on QC as well as the automated.

Aurora can be GPU accelerated I believe, but much more expensive.

I just did some basic checking nothing crazy at all, but yea it wasnt fun seeign it go that slow while not using any cpu cycles, turning on gpu does nothing for me.

Anyhow its for sure a great option, dont hate it at all it caught most issues easy

One painful bug is in regards to dead pixels. It used to detect them then you would have an image for each event that would circle the location of the detected dead pixel. Kind of important as it will throw up more false flags than positive ones. Unfortunately though, the bug means it has stopped indicating where the dead pixel is. Makes it too time consuming to try and find each dead pixel, especially when most detections are wrong…

Blanking, picture quality, gamut errors, PSE, format checks, etc; are pretty good though, as are the file integrity checks.

Yea thats all good the thing is for my deliberiesnits usually not a technical issue with wrong framerates or field orders (still nice to have)

I think what i need is to replace a human watching it which is so difficult… last deliverey was again hundrets of versions you just cant QC all of them ever…

QC is literally the most mundane task imaginable but if one wrong version goes out the door all of our beautiful comps, artistry, creativity is forgotten in a heartbeat. Anytime we see more than X amount of deliverables we bid extra days just for delivery to factor in the amount of QC. Some times these deliveries can drag on for a week or more simply due to QC but it’s always in the bid and scheduled / paid for by client. I know sometimes smaller shops even farm out the deliveries to bigger facilities because it’s just such an unbelievable time suck.

Many years ago i worked at a shop which delivered over 100 versions of a spot with different phone numbers in the end tag depending on geographic region. Every spot went out TECHNICALLY correct (blanking, audio levels, etc etc) but one version had the wrong phone number on it. That shop had to refund the client a massive amount of money. So i wonder if there could ever really be a purely automated QC process for things like that… I feel your pain for sure.


Yeah I left 1 frame of an FPO 1800 number on a deliverable back in the tape days and my employer had to eat $15K of retrafficking costs. We have a dedicated IO department that helps QC our hundreds of deliverables and they are worth absolutely every penny.


I made a similar comment on a versioning thread.

Personally, there are certain things that just take time and human input to get right. In future, potentially AI may be able to take on a large part of this task in combination with automated QC but that time is not now.

If it was me, I’d be carefully checking each and every version if it was my project, probably with a producer beside me to cross check. As others have said, we’d just make sure we were covered for this time, usually by a master cost per TVC. The campaigns with large numbers of deliverables were always good money earners. I cut my teeth on KFC, McDonalds and retail campaigns where you just had to get each and every version right.

Oh, and the days of delivering a 1” spool per TVC per station were also big money earners. Not so much these days with digital deliveries but having to dub a master to 50+ spools per TVC on a big campaign…

Seconding Qscan. I recently trialled a bunch of different QC options (Venera, Vidchecker, VideoQC) and Qscan was imo the best balance of affordability and reliability.

I also had a great experience with their customer service - I’m in Australia and their Sales Rep jumped on a call with me at 12am his time when my license was having an issue. Occasionally it does get stuck on files but rebooting the host tends to fix it in my case. It’s also pretty affordable for freelancers.

Agree that automated QC can never fully replace someone with a good eye - but in our case, it’s great peace of mind that we won’t make embarrassing simple mistakes with blanking errors, audio levels, duration being a frame off etc.