Press Office

Wednesday 24 Sep 2014

Press Release

HD Sound available for all Radio 3 programmes on

Following a successful trial during this year's BBC Proms, listeners will be able to enjoy HD Sound – an extra high-quality audio stream for live online listening – on all BBC Radio 3 programmes from Tuesday 14 December at

HD Sound uses improved encoding and higher bit rates to offer the BBC's highest audio quality broadcast to date. It also offers a wider dynamic range, accentuating the difference in volume between quiet and loud sounds.

HD Sound highlights on Radio 3 over the next month include the BBC Singers collection of modern Christmas carols on BBC Radio 3's Breakfast show in the run up to New Year and The Genius of Mozart season.

At 8.50am daily, from 18 December to 1 January 2011, Radio 3 Breakfast will broadcast a new recording of modern Christmas carols by the BBC Singers, conducted by Bob Chilcott, including four performance premieres, 12 broadcast premieres, a brand-new work from renowned British composer Sir John Tavener and 16-year-old Kristina Arakelyan's winning piece from the 2010 Proms Inspire competition for young composers.

In the first 12 days of January, from midday on 1 January, Radio 3 is devoting its entire schedule to Mozart, one of the greatest ever composers. From his piano concertos and string quartets to his operas and symphonies, the station will play every note that Mozart wrote, all available in HD Sound via the Radio 3 website.

Radio 3 Controller Roger Wright says: "It's wonderful that Radio 3 listeners can now experience all our programmes in even better sound quality when listening online. I hope as many people as possible take the opportunity to experience our Mozart season in the New Year and our Christmas output including the King's College Cambridge Nine Lessons and Carols service and carols from the BBC Singers and enjoy the enhanced audio quality of HD Sound."

Tim Davie, Director of BBC Audio and Music, says: "We are excited to be driving innovation in the radio industry. I expect Radio 3 to the be first of an overall industry drive to keep improving the quality of audio for listeners."

HD Sound will also be available for special events on other BBC Radio networks, such as BBC Radio 2's trial of the technology for Elton John's Electric Proms performance in October.

Appreciation of the improved sound quality will depend on the equipment used – those using small speakers built into a laptop may not notice a big difference, but listeners with a computer connected to a good-quality sound system or high-quality headphones should be able to appreciate the extra clarity and detail in the sound.

Initially, the stream will only be available for live programmes (not on demand) for UK listeners only. It will be available through pages on radio networks' websites and special event sites, although the ambition is to integrate HD Sound into iPlayer and Radioplayer as the technology develops.


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