IBC 2019: Phabrix supports HDR trials for BT Sport with the broadcaster’s latest channel, BT Sport Ultimate

BT Sport’s Andy Beale hard at work in the foreground on BT Sport Ultimate

Phabrix has announced it has recently concluded nine months of successful HDR technology trials with BT Sport, which the broadcaster is utilising with the launch of its new BT Sport Ultimate channel. The company will be discussing its work with BT Sport at IBC in Amsterdam.

The company supported BT Sport, providing its Qx rasterizers and technical expertise, as BT Sport developed and refined its live production workflow for the launch of its new HDR, UHD and Dolby Atmos supported proposition, BT Sport Ultimate, which launched in early August. This includes HDR on the BT Sport app for mobile devices.

Phabrix  HDR-enabled Qx rasterizers were used extensively throughout BT Sport’s production chain, in over 20 live HDR trials, including at the 2019 UEFA Champions League Final in Madrid, the European Rugby Heineken and Challenge Cup finals in Newcastle and the FA Cup Final. The Qx was used to monitor and analyse SDR and HDR Wide Colour Gamut (WCG) material and Phabrix  collaborated with BT Sport to provide suggested settings for SDR to HDR convertors and ‘tone mappers’ in trucks and networks.

The Qx range brings together all the advanced test and measurement tools required for transitioning to the next generation of video formats. Designed for HD/3G/6G/12G-SDI and IP ST 2110/2022-7/2022-6 environments, the instrument set includes tools for rapid fault diagnosis, compliance monitoring and product development.

Andy Beale, chief engineer at BT Sport, said: “HDR is an extremely important development for live sports broadcasting and in line with our innovation ethos brings our audience closer to the heart of sport than ever before: the ultimate viewing experience. Phabrix ’s Qx rasterizer presents all the necessary HDR information we require in a clear, consistent display.”

Prinyar Boon, product manager, Phabrix , added: “Working closely with BT Sport over the past nine months has been thoroughly rewarding for the Phabrix  team, enabling us to learn more about the complex workflow and technical sensitivities of broadcasting a live HDR sports production. Qx’s HDR engineering-grade analysis toolset, including dataview, heatmaps and test pattern generator (mapped and ITU-R patterns) were fantastic assets for comparative monitor set up and the evaluation of HDR to SDR converters. We look forward to continuing our partnership with BT Sport, helping them to bring the ultimate HDR experience to a wider base.”

Phabrix ’s Boon and BT Sport’s Beale will be presenting a Production Masterclass at IBC 2019, titled ‘Delivering Live Football and Rugby in HDR’

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