The SES annual Industry Days event kicked off May 14 with the satellite operator announcing that an 8K demo signal is broadcast directly to a flat screen TV with a built-in satellite receiver.
The 8K content broadcast via ASTRA 28.2 degrees East orbital slot was unveiled at the invite-only event that is held in Luxembourg, with Spin Digital providing the expertise to encode high quality 8K signals, SES the bandwidth to broadcast the signal, and Samsung the 8K flat screen TV to receive and decode the broadcast signal directly.
The 8K content, with 7680×4320 pixels at 50 frames/s, is encoded by Spin Digital using its HEVC encoder at a bit rate of 70 Mbps for broadcast-grade quality, while the transmission is carried out by SES on a single 33 MHz transponder using DTH broadcast parameters. The 82” Samsung 8K Q950RB QLED production model TV receives this signal directly, and is using DVB-S2 transmission parameters specifically for this demo. This Samsung TV features a 4000 Nits peak luminance, an 8K-compatible HEVC 50/60 fps video decoder, the latest HDMI interface and is capable of displaying High Dynamic Range (HDR) content. The TV will soon be available across Europe.
Transmitting broadcast-quality 8K content across multiple video formats calls for both efficient video coding and reliable infrastructure technology. While compression technology will become more efficient in the next few years, the demo underlines how satellite is already capable of reliably providing the transmission bitrates necessary to distribute 8K signals across continents.
“The collaboration with SES is helping to define the compression and quality settings for the new 8K format exploiting all the potential of the HEVC coding technology. Our next step is to enable similar quality and compression for live 8K HEVC,” said Mauricio Alvarez-Mesa, CEO of Spin Digital.
“Audiences today want richer video experiences that can be best fulfilled by immersive Ultra HD content, hence a lot of our broadcast and video customers are migrating their channels to high definition (HD) and Ultra HD. As their trusted partner, our vast TV audience reach and ability to deliver truly engaging video experiences via satellite mean we are well placed to differentiate their offerings and deliver customer success,” said Thomas Wrede, Vice-President of New Technology & Standards at SES Video. “It will be years before large 8K flat screens or video walls become a common sight in our living rooms. Nonetheless, we are anticipating the future by working with our industry partners to further improve the consumer’s video quality experience and to define an 8K satellite broadcasting standard.”