Here Come 4K Broadcasts from Fox Sports, Starting February 17th for DirecTV Clients
Stephan Jukic – February 15, 2017
After failing to broadcast Superbowl LI in 4K UHD despite the fact that they recorded the game in the resolution or higher with more than 2 dozen cameras, Fox Sports is now moving towards immediate implementation of 4K sportscasts as of this February 17th through DirecTV. The broadcasts will start off with the California-Stanford basketball game.
The 4K game broadcast will be offered on DirecTV’s Channel 106, which is the satellite service provider’s dedicated 4K content channel and this particular game is coming after both Fox and DirecTV previously announced in November that they would start offering UHD sportscasts for an assortment of events including college football and basketball games along with major sports events from Major League Baseball, the NASCAR Rally and FIFA.
DirecTV and Fox’s immediate next broadcast after the California-Stanford game will be a March 1st basketball match between University of Washington and UCLA. This latter match will also be available in HD resolution on Fox’s RSNs.
As far as DirecTV is concerned, these new sportscasts are only a part of its slowly broadening delivery of 4K UHD content of all types that the company has been building since their launch of three different 4K channels in 2015 and 2016. These are Channel 104, which was opened in April, 2016 and offers documentaries and assorted original programming from the DirecTV Audience Network, Channel 105, which delivers 4K UHD pay-per-view content such as movies and documentaries and then finally Channel 106 for exclusive 4K events and live sportscasts in UHD.
Viewers who want to enjoy these upcoming 4K sportscasts from DirecTV and Fox will have to get their hands on a compatible (newer model) 4K UHD TV and one of DirecTV’s HD DVR54 Genie boxes, which have to be installed by a technician from the company. The service provider did however change their minimum package requirement for 4K channel service to make it more accessible and affordable.
Fox on the other hand has been experimenting with 4K recording of events it covers for live broadcast without having yet seriously dipped its feet into consumer-ready broadcast delivery in the format. Fox’s efforts at 4K broadcasting have involved the use of multiple 4K and even 8K cameras to record a number of major sports events and their most ambitious recent effort in this direction was the recording of Super bowl LI this past February 5th with a total of 38 UHD cameras of both the 4K and 8K variety for the sake of testing the format and in order to try out its new “Be The Player” interactive game highlight watching system for simulating the presence of a camera in each player’s helmet.
Unfortunately, while Fox is now going to deliver 4K broadcasts through DirecTV, their Super bowl coverage with so many UHD cameras was entirely downscaled to 720p HD for live public broadcast.
Story by 4k.com