3D Focus can reveal more details about how Sony and Can Comunicate will be delivering greater 3D coverage to more channels of the Wimbledon Tennis Championships
This article is brought to you in association with 3D specialists Presteigne Charter.
By Adrian Pennington
The live 3D production from Wimbledon later this month will pack a greater punch than last year because the editorial team can concentrate on delivering the bulk of coverage to a purely TV audience.
Up to 12 matches will be covered live in 3D, all on Centre Court, and will include the men’s quarter finals, the men’s and women’s semi-finals and both finals with lead rights holder ESPN 3D scheduled to air eight of them live. The US broadcaster will have some say in which are shot in 3D depending on scheduling and the player’s involved.
The host production is by Sony in partnership with the BBC and for the All England Lawn Tennis Club (AELTC).
The BBC’s role in the 3D production for 2012 is primarily to provide shared camera feeds. These include a hi-speed camera for super-slow motion which is converted to 3D.
Other broadcasters taking the host 3D feed include Japan’s WowWow, Sky Deutschland, Sky Italia and the Tennis Channel.
The 12 match production does not represent an increase in activity for the production teams behind the event. Last year they captured all the matches on Centre Court in 3D from the quarter finals onwards for archive and by way of rehearsal for the three matches that were transmitted live in 3D.
The 3D production broadly mirrors that established in 2011 with Centre Court ringed with six 3D camera positions. Five of those rigs will be 3Ality Technica Pulsars carrying Sony P1 cameras while a sixth position in the cramped commentary box area is likely to be a much smaller PMW-TD300 camcorder. An additional TD300 is likely to be used to capture colour shots and ad hoc interviews.
CAN Communicate are technical partners once again with NEP Visions supplying its Gemini trucks housing one stereographer and six convergence operators.
TV coverage will likely feature a more obvious use of 3D, with the parallax pulled further out into the audience for certain shots. That’s because most of the matches will be output to TV alone allowing the producers to deliver a greater 3D punch without being compromised by the need to tone that down for cinema. For the men’s final however, which is the sole match being transmitted live to cinemas, the 3D will be adjusted so that negative parallax or out of screen moments are reduced to give audiences watching on the big screen a more comfortable experience.
Live rights to the transmission to cinemas of the men’s final are being sold by SuperVision Media.
Aside from a dialing up of the depth there will be little editorial difference from last year which was widely considered a successful execution. Instead of an end to end coverage which is typical of 2D tennis broadcasts, the action will be covered by way of a linking camera positioned near the centre of the court.
This is the second of a three year deal Sony has with the AELTC to produce Wimbledon 3D though the details of Sony’s sponsorship are not disclosed.
Sony stated: “There has been no question of Sony seeking to withdraw from the partnership with Wimbledon. In terms of support for 3D, as a manufacturer, our ethos has always been to support the early adopter community as they work with new technology to deliver new programmes to customers, but it reaches a point where the market is mature enough that it does not require that level of funding manufacturer support.”
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