Sony preps 4K for football coverage

Like other manufacturers, Sony committed to developing 4K workflow in sports production almost a year ago. Besides tennis – and specifically the 2013 Wimbledon tournament – the Japanese company has also shown interest in a major sport, football.

In a previous collaboration with FIFA, Sony ran a real-life test by covering matches in Ultra HD for the Confederations Cup that was held last year in June in Brazil, one year before this year’s top event.

Spanish Football League at the forefront of technology

Sony carried out new 4K live production trials during a Spanish Championships match. It concerned the major crowd-puller meeting between Real Madrid and FC Barcelona at the Santiago Bernabéu Stadium in Madrid on Sunday 23 March. These shooting trials were carried out in partnership with the local technical services provider, MediaPro, who produced and distributed content internationally.

Two Sony PMW-455 4K cameras with Super 35mm 4K CMOS sensors that have more than 8 megapixels were used to film the match live between the two giants of Spanish football. The 4K images were viewed on two Sony PVM-X300 4K monitors in full resolution. This 4K technology trial means the Spanish Football League (LFP-Liga de Fútbol Profesional) will be the first league in the world to be able to offer 4K images of the 2014-2015 season on a regular basis.

A further step during the next World Cup

FIFA has announced its plans for the 4K coverage of the 2014 World Cup. There was a rumour that only the final match would be filmed in Ultra HD but in fact three of the matches will be produced in 4K: one round of 16 (on 28 June), one quarter-final (on 4 July) and the final (on 13 July)

The official World Cup Film will also be produced in 4K. It will include a selection of matches, including the final. Once the event is over, FIFA will distribute the film online via 4K content distribution services. Sony has also announced that football fans will be able to view promotional trailers on 4K Sony televisions in Sony showrooms and stores. At Sony’s commercial stands situated outside some of the Brazilian stadiums, visitors will be able to view promotional trailers produced in 4K/60P.

Note that in addition to the Sony 4K CineAlta PMW-F55 cameras, PWS-4400 4K multi-port AV storage units, PVM-X300 4K LCD monitors and MVS-7000X 4K video switchers will also be used.

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