4K Final Four demo points way to future of TV

The 2013 NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Final Four was the first major U.S. sporting event recorded in 4K as part of a closed-circuit demonstration in ultra HD, LG Electronics announced last week.

For the one-time demonstration in Atlanta, LG Electronics worked with the NCAA, CBS Sports and Turner Sports to capture the action in 4K resolution to display game highlights on LG’s 84in class Ultra HD TVs at private viewing locations in the Georgia Dome.

“When we first approached our partners at LG and CBS with this idea, we recognized the unique opportunity to pair this inaugural 4K production with the 75th celebration of March Madness in Turner Broadcasting System’s hometown of Atlanta,” said Matt Hong, senior VP and general manager of sports operations, Turner Sports. “We continue to embrace innovation and look at this test of next-generation television technology as a way to potentially serve fans for decades to come.” 

Ken Aagaard, executive VP, operations, engineering and broadcast services, CBS Sports, noted that CBS made HD sports broadcasts a reality with the Final Four more than a decade ago, and that the 4K demonstration carries on that tradition of innovation. “March Madness is always filled with big moments, and this demonstration shows how Ultra HD TV can ultimately become the future of sports broadcasting and enhance the viewer’s experience,” said Aagaard.

The Consumer Electronics Association commemorated this milestone in UHDTV. CEA President and CEO Gary Shapiro described the 4K production of Final Four games as a milestone similar to the first experiments with college basketball in HD over a decade ago:

“These big events provide a platform not just for sports enthusiasts, but for the consumer electronics industry to take steps forward and bring the best technologies into people’s living rooms. CEA views Ultra HD TV as a revolutionary experience for consumers, and the first Ultra HD NCAA game is a buzzer-beater,” Shapiro said.