SKY 3D Germany: Bundesliga, DFB Cup, UEFA Champions League and Many More

Pioneering 3D - SKY Germany

On 23 February 2010 Sky Germany started its 3D trials with the UEFA Champions League match VFB Stuttgart - FC Barcelona followed by the first Bundesliga match Bayer Leverkusen - Hamburger SV. During the Internationale Funkaustellung in Berlin Sky Germany announced to go on air with its 3D channel on 3 October 2010 with the live broadcast of the Ryder Cup and since 14 January 2011 Sky Germany has shown one Bundesliga match in 3D on every match day in addition to DFB Cup matches, UEFA Champions League matches and other international sports events.

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TopVision produced Champions League Game in 3D HD

In preparation for the first 3D HD live production of a German football Bundesliga match, TopVision carried out extensive trials of the necessary equipment on 23rd February during the UEFA Champions League game VFB Stuttgart – FC Barcelona. For the trials on the 23rd February TopVision used 3D HD standard and freestyle camera rigs with HDC-1500 cameras. All cameras were equipped with the high-performance HD Canon lenses. To greatly simplify the 3D HD shooting workflow, a Sony MPE-200 multi-image processor with MPES-3D01 stereo-image-processor-software was on location. The combination of the MPE-200 with MPES-3D01 software enabled the production crew to analyze the 3D HD images and make fine adjustments, e.g. 50% mix, above/below, anaglyph, difference, and side-by-side comparison were provided.

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TopVision realised the first 3D HD Live Produktion for Sky Germany

After exhaustive tests of various 3D production equipment at the Champions League Game VFB Stuttgart - FC Barcelona on 23rd February,  Sky Germany decided to broadcast the Bundesliga top game between Bayer Leverkusen and the Hamburger SV in 3D HD to a selected group of VIPs in Munich. The Live production of the 3D HD signal in Leverkusen was carried out by TopVision on behalf of Sportcast. The responsibility for the transmission was with HD Sat Communications, providing an uplink van in Leverkusen and a downlink van in Munich.

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Sky in 3D HD: About 120 Inspired Guests at the German 3D HD Premiere

Sky Germany again has written History. On Sunday 14th March 2010 Sky has shown a live TV HD production in 3D. About 120 invited guests have followed the Bundesliga top game between Bayer Leverkusen and the Hamburger SV in 3D HD. Among the guests were Franz Beckenbauer, Matthias Sammer, Christian Nerlinger (Sports Director FC Bayern), Tom Bender (Managing Director DFL) and Producer Oliver Berben, all watching the game with the obligative 3D glases. All have been enthusiastic seeing the TV event of the future. The event was moderated by Jessica Kastrop.

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The First 3D HD Production and Transmission in Germany – A Review in Pictures

TopVision was using 3D HD camera rigs from P+S Technik (standard ones for the tripod mounting of three HDC-1500 pairs and freestyle ones mounted on Steadicams for the two EX3 pairs) and the SwissRig from Imartis AG for tripod mounting of one HDC-1500 camera pair. The HDC-1000 camera pair (camera position one) weas mounted on a rig created by TopVision. Engineered and manufactured to very high specifications, the tripod mounted rigs from P+S Technik provided proper parallel camera offsetting for screen perfect stereo images at distances from macro to faraway. The rigs were simple to use and the setup time for a rig took as little as 5 minutes. Designed for constant equilibration, the P+S freestyle rig always kept the camera weights in perfect balance. Integrated motors for stereo base and angulations adjustment optimized the weight and were compatible with available wireless remote control systems.

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Live Broadcast of two German Cup Matches in 2D and 3D within 24 Hours

In the second round of the German Cup the defending champion Bayern Munich met SV Werder Bremen on 26. October (2:1) and a day later Eintracht Frankfurt played Hamburger SV (5:2). Both matches were broadcasted live in HD and 3D on Sky. In addition the Bayern Munich game was shown also on “Das Erste” in HD. The live coverage of both matches in 2D and 3D was carried out by TopVision on behalf of Sportcast, a 100% subsidiary of DFL Deutsche Fußball Liga GmbH and responsible for the frames of the German Cup matches. TopVision’s HD Ü4 and HD Ü5 with its associative tender trucks were on location at both stadiums and delivered both signals within 24 hours.

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The 3D Live Test of Sportcast in Berlin

Sportcast is one of the largest producers of live sports in HD worldwide. And as a subsidiary of DFL Deutsche Fußball Liga GmbH, Sportcast is the host broadcaster of the Bundesliga and 2. Bundesliga in Germany. In addition, Sportcast produces all DFB cup matches and provides advice on productions in various media formats to further associations and leagues as a competent contact partner. After the two DFB cup matches on 26 and 27 October Sportcast produced another 3D Bundesliga match on 27 November in Berlin. In an interview with “Werben & Verkaufen” last week, DFL managing director Tom Bender stated: “We see the 3D production of the Bundesliga first as a test and try to cover the costs. To generate additional money with the match coverage in 3D the market has to grow. But even if the TV manufactures would only sell 3D devices from now on, it would take some time to become a viable business. Nevertheless for the product and the brand Bundesliga 3D plays an important role,” and he continued, “the quality of our product is not only decisive for the German market, but also abroad. We deliver technically the best quality currently available. This includes the production in HD and also selected matches in 3D.”

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Sportcast and SKY are Ready to Broadcast the German Bundesliga in 3D

With the start of the second round of the German Soccer League (DFL) on 14th January 2011 Sportcast will start its regular 3D productions of one match per matchday for SKY Germany. As a final test Sportcast produced the DFB Cup match FC Augsburg – Schalke 04 (0:1) on 21st December 2010 with the production company TopVision in 3D. The production at the Impuls Arena in Augsburg was carried out with eight camera pairs on 3D rigs from various manufacturers. Camera pairs #31 and #32 were Sony HDC-1500’s mounted on side-by-side rigs from Stereotec and positioned on a purpose built camera platform about 5 meters below the traditional HD camera platforms. All other 3D camera pairs were positioned at play ground level.

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One Bundesliga Match in 3D on Every Match Day

Eleven month ago on 23 February 2010 TopVision started with a first 3D trial by covering the UEFA Champions League match VFB Stuttgart – FC Barcelona and three weeks later DFL and Sportcast produced the Bundesliga match Bayer Leverkusen – Hamburger SV together with TopVision in 3D. Since that Sportcast has carried out four more 3D trials in Germany with TopVision (DFB Cup matches Bayern Munich – Werder Bremen, Eintracht Frankfurt – Hamburger SV, FC Augsburg – Schalke 04) and with WIGE (Herta BSC Berlin – MSV Duisburg). And on 16 January Sportcast started with the regular 3D productions with the match 1.FC Cologne – 1.FC Kaiserslautern followed by the match Borusia Mönchengladbach – Bayer Leverkusen on 23 January.

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The UEFA Champions League in 3D by SKY Germany

One of the many highlights of the UEFA Champions League took place on 15 March 2011 in Munich when Bayern played Inter in the round of 16. Bayern's 1-0 first-leg advantage lasted just four minutes as Samuel Eto'o tucked away his eighth goal of the competition. By 31 minutes Mario Gomez and Thomas Müller had struck to turn the game on its head, giving Louis van Gaal's men a handy lead – but there was a nasty sting in the tail for a side beaten by the Nerazzurri in last May's showpiece. Wesley Sneijder's 63rd-minute equaliser set the platform for Pandev, who fired high into the net as Inter became only the second club in UEFA Champions League history – and the first in 15 years – to overturn a first-leg deficit on their travels.

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That ever-expanding object of desire – Bundesliga in 3D

At close of play on Match day 34 Borussia Dortmund captain Roman Weidenfeller raised the Bundesliga championship plate to the skies, to a thunderous roar from the massive crowd packed into the Signal Iduna Park. For the seventh time, Borussia's name will be immortalised on the nation's most coveted "salad dish" – and all the action on the field was broadcasted on Sky and “Liga Total” in stunning 3D. he TV media service provider Sportcast finished the Bundesliga season2010/11 with the production of another soccer highlight in 3D – Borussia Dortmund crowned their championship-winning season with a 3-1 victory on home turf, relegating Eintracht Frankfurt in the process. Sportcast again had commissioned TopVision to cover the match and the victory ceremony in 3D – this time with ten 3D camera pairs.

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