PBS is touting the successful live end-to-end test of a unique combination of Ultra High-Def (UHD) technologies, including high dynamic range (HDR) and DTS:X next-gen audio.
The real-time transmission test occurred in September, with PBS partnering up with a host of tech companies, including DPA, DTS, Ericsson, SES and ViXS, along with PBS member stations in Saint Paul, Minn. and Jackson, Miss. The content itself included performances by drummer and DPA microphone artist Dennis Chambers and other local musicians, recorded in Washington, D.C. and at Blue Room Music Studios in Herndon, Va.
PBS said it’s the first real-time trial with this combination of next-gen UHD technologies, and won’t be the last, as more and more broadcasters look to distribute next-gen features to owners of 4K TVs.
“This combination of technologies represents what the future of broadcasting may look like,” said Steve Corda, VP of business development for SES. “We were pleased to work with PBS and DTS and carry the transmission on our UHD satellite multiplex, which carries the largest bouquet of UHD channels in North America.”
The PBS Advanced Format Center at NPR was behind the broadcast, led by Renard Jenkins, VP of production and media distribution for PBS Operations. The UHD TV tech PBS used is currently being developed by several groups, including the Advanced Television Systems Committee (ATSC), Digital Video Broadcasting (DVB) and the Society of Motion Picture & Television Engineers (SMPTE).
“Creating this content and successfully completing the transmission test with this unique combination of elements was a true collaboration and an exciting look into the future,” Jenkins said. “At PBS, we are committed to working with industry leaders across the nation and around the world to help define the future of media and ultimately bring it to the American public.
“This initiative allowed us to partner with some of the best companies working in this field, along with two outstanding public television stations, to prove this format’s feasibility and viability within this production-to-living room workflow test. It’s a significant step forward for bringing the next-gen audio-visual broadcast experience of UHD TV closer to reality.”