There are a few personalities in the entertainment industry that generate buzz and garner respect when they speak on industry-wide issues. In this case, James Cameron is playing the role of 3D advocate, as he always does, and mentions how he’s working with the BBC to create the big screen release of Walking with Dinosaurs. Though this should be absolutely stunning, Cameron does let you know how he feels about the BBC holding back with 3D a bit:
“The BBC has held back a little bit with 3D…BSkyB has jumped in and ESPN has jumped in.”
It’s obvious that Cameron has faith that the BBC can dominate the region’s 3D broadcasting, but the hesitation has already cost them some valuable ground. The costs associated with development have been steadily dropping, and because of that, the BBC should make a move – it’s obvious that everyone else is!
Cameron goes on in the interview to explain how he believes that it’s time for the BBC to make the muscle move into the industry. 3D is obviously here to stay, and as the development costs continue to plummet, it will only lead to more competition, as smaller organizations can start to get into the 3D movement.
Cameron brings up a great point, and with Wimbledon getting broadcast in 3D to the public, there should be some BBC moves in the near future. Obviously, they plan on working with Cameron on some 3D content, but how far they’re willing to take things may be up in the air for a bit longer.
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Juggling both 2D and 3D productions side by side has become too expensive for ESPN to handle, so much so that they’ve decided to scrape the 2D production altogether. This week ESPN is going to stick to the 3D production of “Friday Night Fights” for its weekly simulcasts, marking its 3D debut on ESPN 3D.
Phil Orlins, Coordinating Producer said that the left camera rig will be used to feed the 2D viewers. All in all, six cameras will be mounted and manned – one using a tripod, three held by hand, one in ultra slow motion and one on a boom. A seventh unmanned camera will remain in a fixed position.
However, not all is hunky dory in the new 3D world for ESPN. There is still of course the problem of commercial insertions and promo adverts, which are of course different for both 2D and 3D viewing. The intricacies of this situation are still being worked out by the producers who spoke to 3DHollywood.net and other media channels.
This cost slashing tactic will continue and has been extended to a college basketball game which is to be simulcast on ESPN3D.
Slight differences will be seen in the broadcast of three boxing matches – a 10 rounder, 4 rounder and 10 rounder, while still using the same 3D camerca techniques to cover simulcast events.
Matt Sandulli, Senior Coordinating Producer explained that in 3D feed, graphics will be rearranged because of the depth that 3D provides. This means that for “Friday Night Fights” the countdown clock and the fighter’s name will appear on the top of the screen as opposed to the bottom. This is because in 3D pre-set depth of the overlays conflicts with the depth of the people and objects.
Other sports that used a clock to show the time left, also noticed this discrepancy and as a result resorted to the same move, especially in football and basketball games.
Owing to the nature of 3D viewing, Orlins said, the number of cuts or switches made to different cameras will be fewer and far in between because of the readjustment it takes for the human eye to focus on 3D image again. Sandulli said they’re going to try a new approach where the handheld camera will zoom in on the boxers and mirror their movements to provide a greater visual impact, so that it feels as real as possible.
Commentary for the sporting events will be provided by 3D announcers Joe Tessitore and Teddy Atlas, coming straight from the ringside. This move, Sandulli said was not based on the 3D element but on the lack of available personnel.
This move was welcomed both by the announcers and producers of “Friday Night Fights”. All these subtle changes, they believe, is what will make boxing benefit the most from the 3D element because of the cameras being right near the action.
Tessitore excitedly goes on to say that everyone at ESPN has been waiting for this moment since ESPN 3D was announced. One may wonder that with all the hype, why was boxing one of the last sports to be introduced to the ESPN 3D channel. The answer all lies in timing, the boxing series began anew last month, and the MLB All Star Game and college football was being experimented with from August onwards.
Orlins went on to say that despite 3D being the best coverage for a sport like boxing, there are a few challenges that are yet to be overcome. For example, if one gets too close to the action, with the 3D camera too close, then the danger of creating a double image arises because the two lenses from the right and left camera cannot converge. They’ve figured out a way to minimise this by using a beam splitter camera rig which straps to the two cameras together and brings them closer. However this would require a bigger set up.
Fewer commercials will be used for the 3D broadcast until they create new 3D ones, until then 2D ones will be substituted. They will also be used to create a market for the ESPN 3D channel, since it’s going to be a regular channel from Monday onwards.
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To many, the lack of consumer consumption regarding 3D HDTV programming has very little to do with a decline in interest regarding the technology. Instead, there simply isn’t much to watch in regards to 3D programming. So, to remedy this situation, consumers can expect more programming on the 3D platform in the coming months.
For example, “Lucretia Borgia”, a popular operatic piece, will be aired in 3D on DirectTV this month. Further, there will be several other 3D releases coming to DirectTV customers. Tron: Legacy, Tangled, Jackass, and Piranha will all be released in 3D, which should excite many that felt that they weren’t getting the content necessary to utilize their recent entertainment upgrades.
Sports have found the 3D movement, as well. ESPN is now offering 3D coverage for major golf events, with 10 hours slated in their coverage of the Masters in Augusta. This could be a risky venture, as many aren’t sure just how sports will translate to the 3D technology. Look for quite an investment on ESPN’s behalf. Should the technology take hold, they’ll want to be the frontrunner for the movement. That’s a guarantee.
In the earlier days as there was not much content, same content was getting displayed again and again on the television. The viewing would continue for the 24 hours of the day and 7 days of the week.
The latest news from ESPN is that they are changing their timing of 3D channel from part time to full time. This does not guarantee us that the content of 3D viewing will increase initially they will start repeating the same content which they were showing before. The conversion of part time to full time will happen on 14th February. Full time programs will take some more time for ESPN Meanwhile we can wait for the college football season that was on 3D with national champion’s game. Currently these games are there in 3D and many people enjoy it.
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Any sports fanatic should be thrilled about the prospect of getting sports in 3D. After all, the investment for the necessary hardware and of course the 3D content source is nothing compared to purchasing front row seats to your favorite events in terms of cost. Sky 3D now has over 70,000 subscribers to its 3D platform, which is a shocking number when you consider it’s almost half of the 3D TV owners in the service area. However, can all sports be delivered in 3D with ease? Well, some are easier than others, but none of them come easily.
Cameramen need to learn an entirely new way of doing things, according to Bryan Burns from ESPN. The 2D capture techniques that have been utilized for decades do not come into play. Camera crews need to get low and in the mix if they want to capture quality 3D visuals. This will cause for variances in the 3D broadcasts, as stadiums and sport requirements differ. If a stadium is smaller or offers better camera access, the 3D content will be far superior.
Sky 3D and ESPN 3D are continuing the trial and error that’s necessary to develop consistent 3D broadcasts. With the 2012 Olympics coming up in London, there’s no doubt that we’ll be hearing a bit about a 3D broadcast. Nothing is set in stone, but the BBC hasn’t exactly thrown itself into the deep end of the 3D pool. Improved technology for consumer purchase will likely lead to improvements across the board, but don’t be surprised if you notice some variance in 3D quality when it comes to sports in 3D. The elements involved are still being conquered, so be patient, but more importantly…be excited!
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There’s no doubt that 3D content is booming these days, and Sky, the popular network who’s made waves due to the broadcasting of 3D sporting events, is ready to help everyone get in on the action. They believe that the technology is ready to make the jump from a niche enclave to a mass market, and if anyone’s capable, it’s Sky.
They’ve already been teaming up with ESPN regarding the 3D streaming of large sporting events, so they’ve obviously got friends in the right places. The satellite mega-network has driven many to upgrade their entertainment systems to include 3D capabilities, and they have no intention of slowing down. Instead, look for them to only expand their efforts. The opportunity is there, and they’re likely heading down the right path. 3D is here to stay, and any company that recognizes that will surely profit from it.
Their first quarter subscription numbers hover around 70,000 viewers, and with a slew of apps expected to be released soon from Sky, that number should climb dramatically through the rest of the year. Citing the “trust” placed in the network from the British public, Sky seems to feel that they have an obligation to deliver top-notch 3D content. They’ve taken some chances, and at times have completely whiffed, but in the end, you know what’s happening here. A new network giant will emerge due to foresight and innovation: 3D content isn’t going to slow, and Sky seems poised to take this thing the whole way…
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Sky 3D and ESPN are teaming up to deliver the FA Cup in 3D! May 14th will mark the final match between Manchester City and Stoke City, and it will be aired on ESPN, ITV and Sky 3D. We’ve seen this coming for quite some time with larger events like the Wimbledon tennis final being given the 3D makeover. Sky 3D is part of the Sky World Package, and all you’ll need is a feed, a 3D television, and your favorite brew…ok, the beer is optional, but you get the idea. And, just in case you want to mix it up with some friends, pubs across the UK will be broadcasting the final in 3D, as well, so you’ve got that going for ya…
ESPN has been working on the implementation of 3D technology into sports for quite some time. At first, there was some speculation as to whether or not sports fans wanted to utilize the growing 3D market, but as we’re getting more content, there’s no doubt that the potential is there.
Seeing the coordination between Sky Sports and ESPN should signal the coming of quite a bit of 3D sports content. Sky has been working hard on this across the UK, and with ESPN’s global position in sports, there’s no doubt that this could explode in a matter of months. We’ll keep you posted…just be ready to take that header when it comes your way…
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Sports fans everywhere have been salivating over the idea of watching their sports in 3D. To show that there are huge steps being made, ESPN aired the Masters Tournament in 3D for the second consecutive year. Were you watching?
ESPN 3D’s producer Phil Orlin pointed out the depth perception involved, proving to fans just how useful 3D sports can be. The ability to judge distances and follow putts on a 3D green makes for great television, and it’s obvious that fans are starting to notice. After airing the popular Major tournament from Augusta last year, ESPN decided to follow it up again, to show advancements made over the last year, and let fans know that they’re serious about bringing this technology into the fold.
With so many sports enthusiasts out there, this can be a great opportunity to solidify 3D sales to another viewing demographic. Will it stick? ESPN sure thinks it’s going to, and with so many viewers, there’s no doubt that fans everywhere have been paying attention. Well, if you caught it, what did you think?
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ESPN is taking the first big step here in the future of broadcast technology. We know that ESPN has been adopting the 3D technology for a while now, bringing 3D sports broadcasts to 3DTVs, but did you know that ESPN had a totally different production process for 2D content? This essentially means that any even that they’re covering in 3D would need a whole different set of cameras for a 2D broadcast. It would also mean that they need twice the bandwidth to transmit this, and twice of basically everything. Well, that’s all coming to an end now, as of February 18th, when ESPN is going to be the first to produce Friday Night Fights in 3D, and use the same stream in 2D to pass through to HDTV owners. This might not seem like it has much of an impact on the consumer, but let’s look at the facts. The real fact is by all possible means the broadcasters can now eliminate a whole half of the 2D- 3D co-production process, thus lowering costs, and making 3D a more feasible option, economically. This also means reduced bandwidth for transmission. If this method of broadcasting is successful, then it could also tilt the industry into picking a codec for transmission, making H.264 Multiview a more likely option because it is backward compatible with 2d, while the other major player, the Dolby’s and Sensio’s methods are not. For the consumers, it means that 3DTV would finally gain more content.