F1’s adoption of high definition broadcasts took a long time to arrive. For several years, fans asked when F1 would go HD, only to be disappointed.
Is there a similar appetite developing for F1 coverage in 3D? Or is the next stage in high definition coverage the real future of F1 broadcasting?
Digital 3D films have been on show in cinemas for several years. And there are subscription television services, such as Sky in the UK, which offer 3D broadcasts.
But the technology has struggled to win mainstream popularity. Sales of 3D television sets have disappointed as consumers have been unimpressed by the picture quality and by the need to wear special glasses to view it.
I had a chance to watch some of Sky’s footage today. While the 3D worked well for close-ups of cars in the pit lane and some other angles, it added less to shots of the cars in motion.
The next step in high definition broadcasts is Ultra HD. While 1080p HD – the current standard – provides a resolution of 1,920 x 1,080 pixels, the Ultra HD format defined in October promises resolutions from 3,840 x 2,160 (4K) to 7,680 ?âÔÇö 4,320 (8K).
These will offer vastly more detailed, colourful and realistic images. But the technology is still in its early stages: the first Ultra HD television sets have price tags which look like they belong on cars and finding the bandwidth to supply the vast amount of data needed is a major challenge.
However Ultra HD is making its first steps towards the living rooms of the world. Japan has revealed plans to broadcast some of the 2014 World Cup, which takes place in Brazil, in 4K resolution via satellite.
Over to you
One technology is available now, the other is some way off. But which broadcasting format are you most interested in for Formula One coverage?
Have you watched any of the current F1 test broadcasts in 3D? Is there any need to improve on current HD broadcasts?
Cast your vote below and have your say in the comments.
Which broadcasting technology are you most interested in for F1?
- 3D (5%)
- Ultra HD (79%)
- Neither (17%)
Total Voters: 230
Debates and polls
- Vote for your 2015 Russian Grand Prix Driver of the Weekend
- Rate the race: 2015 Russian Grand Prix
- Do you support F1 teams’ EU protest?
- Vote for your 2015 Japanese Grand Prix Driver of the Weekend
- Rate the race: 2015 Japanese Grand Prix
Image ?é?® COTA/LAT