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CNN Worldwide rolls out 24-hour CNN HD

CNN Worldwide Sept. 1 launched its first 24-hour news network in HD, CNN HD — a separate HD channel identical to the CNN/U.S. SD channel.

CNN HD will present more than 60 hours each week of programming produced in HD.

The launch of CNN HD is part of a continued rollout of HD offerings and innovations. CNN Worldwide’s HD plans include equipment and resources for the network’s newsgathering operation and field production around the world.

At NAB2007, CNN announced that it would standardize on the Sony XDCAM HD format for HD field acquisition.

As part of its initial entry into HD, CNN will produce all of its New York-based programs, select “CNN Presents” and “CNN: Special Investigations Unit” documentaries, and special events in HD.

CNN’s next two presidential debates — a Nov. 15 Democratic debate co-sponsored with the Nevada Democratic Party in Las Vegas and a Nov. 28 Republican debate co-sponsored with YouTube in Florida — will both be shot and produced in HD.

CNN Worldwide’s venture into HDTV also involves a significant investment in equipment in the field to ensure that its journalists can gather news in HD. Crews will be equipped with a combination of HD cameras, laptops, trucks, fly-aways and the CNN Election Express, the network’s mobile HD production unit.

Satellite TV distributor DIRECTV plans to include CNN HD among its extensive slate of nationwide HD channels later this month.