Tandberg at heart of action for first-ever fully HD games

Tandberg TV recently announced its leading role in the delivery of HD and SD television feeds to a potential worldwide audience of 4 billion for the Beijing Olympic Games. The company is providing a range of MPEG-4 AVC and MPEG-2 compression equipment and professional receivers to a number of major broadcast organizations across the globe including the Host Broadcaster, EBU and Televisa for what the International Olympic Committee predicts will be the biggest broadcast event of all time.

The Beijing Games represent a milestone in the history of Olympics broadcasting. These are the first Games to be fully broadcast in high-definition and television audiences worldwide can expect an unsurpassed viewing experience. The 2008 Games are also attracting more television coverage than ever, with the organizers predicting over 5,000 hours of coverage, up from 3,800 during the Athens Games in 2004. There will be 1,000 cameras conveying this summer’s sports action to 220 countries/territories.

Tandberg pioneered digital video compression in MPEG-2 and again in MPEG-4 AVC, and has consistently set the benchmarks for best quality HDTV over contribution, distribution and transmission networks. Backed by a support team in China, the company is providing a number of solutions that will help many of its customers deliver two-and-a-half weeks of premium sports.

Tandberg is supplying the Host Broadcaster of the 2008 Beijing Games with a range of MPEG-4 AVC video compression equipment and professional receivers for broadcasting of the Games. The solutions include TANDBERG EN8090 MPEG-4 AVC HD encoders and the RX1290 multi-format Professional Receivers. The system will be managed by nCompass Control. Live high-definition feeds will be encoded in full 1080i resolution at two bit-rates simultaneously to fit different IP transmission paths. At the same time, each HD source will be internally down-converted inside the encoder, offering up to full resolution standard-definition MPEG-4 AVC.

The 2008 Beijing Games are set to be one of the most high profile Olympics for many years. Over half a million visitors will watch more than 10,500 athletes compete. Television cameras and content delivery networks will link the 31 Beijing-based venues and the six venues outside Beijing, as well as 59 training centers, to deliver up-to-the-minute footage throughout.

The Host Broadcaster will provide international television and radio signals and all other necessary broadcast facilities to rights-holding broadcasters and will employ more than 5,000 staff during the Games, covering 302 events taking place in 37 different competitions and several non-competition venues. The heartbeat of the broadcasting operation, running 24 hours a day, will be the 55,000 square-meter International Broadcast Centre (IBC) in the newly-built National Convention Centre within the Beijing Olympic Green. The International Olympics Committee says there will be over 250 rights-holding broadcasters, with over 12,000 on-site staff.

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