BCS Championship Game Coming in 3D

The technology is giving sports networks a taste of a new revenue stream for big-time events.

The college football BCS National Championship Game is bursting into 3D this season, in a special presentation in Las Vegas during the 2009 Consumer Electronics Show, as well as to some 80 theaters across the country.

Like the upcoming 2009 NBA All-Star game, also slated for viewing in 3D in theaters nationwide, the technology is giving sports networks a taste of a new revenue stream for big-time events.

The BCS transmission, using Sony's 4K projection technology, will be shown to 1,200 invited guests at the Paris Hotel and Casino’s Theatre des Arts, which boasts 3D technology from RealD.

For the game, between the University of Florida and University of Oklahoma at Dolphin Stadium in Miami, Sony Electronics and Fox Sports are teaming with several other technology providers.

Action will be shot with Sony HD cameras specially modified with 3ality Digital’s image-capture technology for stereoscopic capture and transmission.

Gamecreek Video will provide its high-definition mobile video production unit, and the program will be transmitted live via Cinedigm’s CineLive satellite distribution network.

Sony is providing its SXRD 4K projection technology, delivering more than four times the resolution of home HDTV systems. The projectors delivered similar simulcasts in 2007 for the NBA.

RealD’s 3D technology, including eyewear, screen and filtering technology, was custom-built for the SXRD 4K projection system.

“This event at the Paris Hotel is a perfect showcase for 4K technology,” said Alec Shapiro, senior vice president of Sony Electronics’ Broadcast and Production Systems. “4K technology was designed with enough flexibility to show superb-quality 2D or 3D content in the highest resolution available—for motion picture releases, live events or other forms of alternative content, delivering benefits to everyone, from the movie-going consumer to theater owners.”

“The live broadcast to the Paris Hotel and to movie theaters across the nation is the latest example of how we can deliver our programming to audiences in new and exciting ways,” said Jerry Steinberg, senior vice president of field operations and engineering for Fox Sports. “3D technology holds unlimited potential for the future of both sports broadcasting and live event production.”

Read more about HD 3D technology in the Jan. 7, 2009, issue of TV Technology.

Read all HD Notebook items here.