While CES very much focuses on the hardware needed to best display 4K (and perhaps even 8K) content, the production end of the value chain is also looking to boost availability of 4K programming.
Stuart Smitherman, president of Vivicast Media, says that a year or so ago Ultra HD was very much about scenic landscapes and wildlife. That is now changing for the better, he says. He adds that while Live Sports will continue to lead the way, he told Studio Daily that the majority of Vivicast’s production partners are not shooting live sports and instead are creating works of art, and programming that needs to remain timeless or at least relevant for years to come.
The difference, says Smitherman, is the addition of High Dynamic Range to the portfolio of benefits that 4K allows. He told delegates at MIPtv in April almost 2 years ago that content, however beautifully [shot], must have a story or narrative that is capable of holding a viewer’s attention but still showcases Ultra HD.
Vivicast Media has for some time been supplying 4K content into DirecTV for their UHD output. But he tells producers that even if their clients are today only requesting 1080 HDTV then it is time to improve their image capture to 4K/UHD. “You can always downgrade to HD but if you have the source material in the highest quality resolution you are more likely to be able to sell that content in the future.”