SES demos 8K via satellite
May 14, 2019
By Chris Forrester
SES is holding its annual ‘Industry Days’ event at its Luxembourg HQ and is using the event to showcase how satellite can handle 8K content.
SES says this is the first-ever demo of 8K-by-satellite being transmitted directly to an 82” flat-screen 8K set (from Samsung) with a built-in satellite receiver capable of decoding the signal.
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 Mb/s 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 flagship 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. Samsung says the TV will soon be available across Europe.
SES said that 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.”
“Not only is the SES Industry Days an ideal platform to showcase the latest satellite-enabled products and services, the event has also gained the reputation of being a birthplace for innovation as over 300 attendees from 190 companies around the world gather together to discuss budding business concepts and how they can partner together to bring about more cost-efficient and effective solutions for their customers,” added SES.
“Samsung is delighted to partner once again with SES with another leading-edge technology demonstration at the SES Industry Days. Samsung is fully committed to the development of a future 8K TV market and this demonstration of the viability of the SES satellite platform is an important step towards that goal”, said John Adam, Head of Business Development and Industrial Affairs at Samsung Research UK.
“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, VP/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.”