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Saturday, April 20, 2013
SES to Pioneer First Ultra HD Transmission in Europe Using The HEVC Standard

Satellite operator SES together with its partners Harmonic and Broadcom, has pioneered the first Ultra HD transmission in the new HEVC standard live from an ASTRA satellite at 19.2 degrees East.

The HEVC standard features an up to 50 percent encoding efficiency improvement, compared to previous test broadcasts in MPEG-4 AVC (H.264).

The end-to-end demonstration which was presented at the SES Industry Days in Luxembourg used Harmonic's ProMedia Xpress and a HEVC decoder reference-design system based on Broadcom's BCM7445 device for receiving HEVC encoded Ultra-HD television transmission. The signal was broadcast in DVB-S2 using a data rate of 20 Mbit/s.

The live demonstration for the first time broadcasts a full 3840x2160 pixel Ultra HD picture in HEVC, while previous demonstrations were either broadcast in H.264 or using 4 HD pictures in parallel. SES first live-broadcast a full 3840x2160 pixel Ultra HD picture using the MPEG-4 AVC (H.264) standard at IBC 2012.

Thomas Wrede, VP Reception Systems, SES, said: "We are very proud to present the first Ultra HD demo in the HEVC standard on satellite. SES has once again taken a leadership role in the industry by broadcasting the first real Ultra HD picture in a commercially realistic bandwidth. We are convinced that the HEVC standard will become the option of choice for TV operators broadcasting Ultra HD content and expect the industry to develop prototype Ultra HD receivers in the coming months. With this initiative SES will be significantly driving the Ultra HD ecosystem forward and provide a 24/7 test channel to its industry partners."

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