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NEP Australia and BT Partner in World-First Live 4K Cricket Broadcasts

Ground breaking hybrid HD-4K solution for Star Sports India’s ICC Cricket World Cup coverage

April 14, 2015 (Sydney)

Broadcasting and international cricket history were made at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) on 29 March with the culmination of the world’s first live cricket broadcasts in 4K ultra high definition.

NEP Australia, Australia’s largest and most experienced outside broadcast solutions provider, and BT Media and Broadcast teamed up to deliver seven key live-to-air 4K matches in the 2015 ICC Cricket World Cup for host broadcaster Star Sports India and its direct-to-home (DTH) partners.

The series spanned February 8 – March 29 from Adelaide, Perth, Sydney and Melbourne and comprised two warm-up events; India’s four pool matches (including the opener against Pakistan); one quarter final; one semi final; and the final.

NEP undertook all facilitation, production and direction services for the seven live 4K broadcasts.

BT provided its international fibre services to deliver the HD world feed for international distribution as well as the 4K fibre circuits between the Australian venues and India.

NEP and BT devised a hybrid 4K-HD technical and production solution, which allowed the Star India network to offer its world feed to direct-to-home subscribers in both high definition and 4K.

The tandem 4K-HD production meant material captured by 4K cameras could be integrated with the world feed production, eliminating the need for additional cameras.

NEP, BT and Star Sports India undertook thorough proof of concept testing prior to the events, culminating with a live run at the Australia v England One Day International in January.

NEP Australia Project Director Andrew Quinn said: “When three companies with the experience and calibre of Star Sports, BT and NEP come together with the goal of being the first to deliver live 4K TV coverage of cricket into people’s homes in India, each and every person on the project was committed to it being a success. I would like to thank the teams at Star and BT who embraced this first-time concept and made it fly. With the NEP worldwide network’s ongoing investment in 4K this style of 4K production and delivery can be offered to all of NEP’s clients.”

Sanjay Bhat, Head of Sales, Asia Pac, BT Media & Broadcast, said: “It’s been great to work with NEP and Star TV to provide this service. Broadcasting the cricket live in ultra-high definition 4K was a real success and brilliant for all the fans of the sport.”

Project specifics:

• NEP’s HD4K super truck with 3G and 4K options
• Sony MVS 8000X 4K switcher with replay transition
• 9 x Sony F55 4K full sensor cameras with cine lenses operating with full television zoom, focus and iris
• I-movix 4K ultra high motion camera
• 4K steadi-cam
• 4K EVS workflow for multi-cam record, replay, highlights and archiving
• 4K Video File Transfer: EVS to edit and back file-based workflow
• Alston Elliot 4K graphics
• Dolby 5:1 program audio
• 4K up-conversion: specialised HD camera shots from the world HD feed
• Seamless integration of the 4K production and HD host broadcaster feed
• UHD standard: 3840 x 2160, p50 4:2:2, 10 bit
• 37 Australian staff, including nine from NEP Australia and 26 Australian freelance broadcast professionals, plus two from BT Media and Broadcast
• Nine events:
• Warm up – Adelaide Oval, February 8
• Warm up – Adelaide Oval, February 10
• Match 1 (India’s Pool) – Adelaide Oval, February 15
• Match 2 (India’s Pool) – MCG, February 22
• Match 3 (India’s Pool) – WACA, February 28
• Match 4 (India’s Pool) – WACA, March 6
• Match 5, Quarter Final – MCG, March 19
• Match 6, Semi Final – SCG – March 26
• Match 7, Final – MCG, March 29

The live 4K Cricket World Cup broadcasts follow NEP Australia’s delivery of Katy Perry’s Sydney concert in 4K in December 2014.

NEP Australia’s latest-generation fully-4K super trucks, HD11 and HD12, launch in July and December 2015, respectively.

About NEP

NEP provides the technology and know-how to enable clients to produce the world’s most prestigious live and broadcast events around the globe. The company is the leading worldwide provider of outsourced production solutions offering technical services for remote production, studio production, video display, host broadcasting, post production, premium playout, smart asset / media management, and multi-screen delivery. NEP’s more than 3,000 employees are driven by passion and a focus on technical innovation, and together they have supported productions in over 85 countries on all seven continents. NEP is headquartered in the United States and has offices in 21 countries.