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Super Hi-Vision Trial: Reaction

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Nick Reynolds Nick Reynolds | 19:05 UK time, Friday, 1 October 2010

BBC Control Room during super hi vision trial

The Control Room in TVC during the Super Hi Vision trial

On Wednesday in Television Centre BBC Research and Development and Japanese public broadcaster NHK sucessfully transmitted Super Hi-Vision Footage of the Charlatans playing live to Japan. There was widespread coverage and some excitement.

Ant Miller on the BBC R&D blog:

The main camera, the biggest in the pictures, and the key reason for this demo, was an NHK Super Hi-vision camera, which records an image of mind blowingly high resolution, 33Mega pixels per frame. These images were displayed around the studio on 4k (4000 horizontal lines resolution) monitors- even though these are the highest definition monitors in the BBC, the image is actually being down converted from its raw form!

BBC News' headline described the event as "historic". Here's their video report:

MIke at Gadgetsteria: "1080p will look like a big bag of suck next to this: Japanese pushing Super HI-Visoin -- 7680 x 4320 of awesomeness."

From Switched:

High-quality 1080p images are already impressive (and disturbing) enough. With Hi-Vision, we'll be able to make out every fine detail of each pore on the faces of TV personalities.

From Hexus:

Of course, transmitting this much data was a challenge in itself, and this is what the researchers at the Beeb's R&D labs have been working on. As well as developing some advanced compression-algorithms, they combined multiple high-speed internet connections across the planet to create a single 350Mbps link. Because of the massive amounts of bandwidth required, satellite broadcasts were prohibitively expensive, forcing the team to look for another option.

There's a report on this week's Click and on next week's Digital Planet on BBC World Service.

Nick Reynolds is Social Media Executive, BBC Online


  • Comment number 1.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 2.

    The BBC has described this as "historic". What a load of rubbish. 8K video cameras have been commercialy available for ages as too have the high speed data links. There is absolutly nothing "historic" about this publicity stunt. It was probably designed to distract from Sky's opening of the first 3D channel in the UK which is far more historic.

    What the BBC don't tell us with this stunt is that they have no plans what ever to deliver 3D to licence payers let alone Super Hi Vision. In any case this was not a real demonstration of Super HD Vision as it only used 5.1 surround sound where as 22.2 sound channels should have been used.

    The BBC cannot even deliver a decent HD channel. BBC HD is 1440x1080 which is below the 1920x1080 standard for HD. Sky is transmitting 48 HD channels and the BBC only contributes one low quality part time channel.

  • Comment number 3.

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  • Comment number 4.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 5.

    The BBC reports on this 'historic event' constantly refer to current HD as 1920x1080 pixel resolution. It is even splashed across one of the video reports.

    So how come the BBC broadcast in 1440x1080, and is almost the only channel to do so?

    If the BBC cannot do HD now, it makes me suspicious that when Super HD finally does become available then it too will be broadcast at a lower resolution and bitrate than the rest of the industry, no doubt accompanied by BBC claims that people can't see the difference...

  • Comment number 6.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 7.

    why on earth the BBC are doing this when they cannot even sort out their own HD channel I shall never know, wasting our license money on something we'll never realistically get to see for years and years, it's not historic, it's just a farce.

    and the whole HD not being good enough quality for sky viewers surprisingly doesn't affect virgin media homes, I wonder why...


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