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HD Hits NFL Studio Programs

HD sports productions will move off the field and into the studio and pregame shows this weekend as CBS, Fox, and NBC all debut new ways to use HD within the pre-game and studio football telecasts.

Fox Sports will bring an HD truck from All Mobile Video on the road to help pre-game show host and “A” game commentator Joe Buck and the Fox Sports team broadcast from the road every week.

“We’ve done it on a selected basis over the years,” says Jerry Steinberg, Fox Sports VP, field operations, referring to playoff and Super Bowls where the crew in Los Angeles was relocated. “But doing the set-up on a weekly basis will make the set-up that much more complex.” Among the gear in the All Mobile truck is a Grass Valley Kalypso switcher and EVS replay units.

Meanwhile CBS Sports is revamping its set for 16:9, a move that will enhance the viewer’s experience and bring more depth to the HD image. Steven Artsis, executive vice president of Video Visions, worked with CBS Sports to install nearly 60 LCD monitors from Viewsonic, Barco and NEC on the set as well as a LED wall from Lighthouse at the back of the set that is 8-feet high and 14-feet wide.

“We’re also using two 50-inch Panasonic plasmas from the old set that still work perfectly,” he says.

Of course, when it comes to Panasonic plasma , the big buz is NBC’s decision to install two 103-inch HD plasma displays (suggested price is around $70,000 each) on its new set for Football Night in America.The Panasonic TH-103PF9UK, which recently made its worldwide debut, is the world’s largest plasma television available. NBC Universal is the first commercial customer to purchase the 103-inch plasma display.

The displays have a resolution of 1,920 horizontal x 1,080 vertical pixels (about 2 million pixels, twice the resolution of commonly available HD sets), a contrast ratio of 5,000:1, and 4,096 equivalent steps of color gradation, delivering clear, crisp and impactful fast action video images.