Why Cleveland — and TVNZ HD — Aren’t Hotter

Software gremlins continue to compromise TVNZ’s HD capability.

This is why some SD shows have been incorrectly billed in publications like the NZ Listener as screening in HD (the latest being TV2’s Hot in Cleveland) and others haven’t been flagged they are 1080i (Jamie’s 30 Minute Meals on TV One).

It’s been an ongoing problem since TV One and TV2 cranked up their HD content earlier this year and now threatens to limit their 5.1 rollout.

Whereas TV3 went Dolby Digital as soon as it started broadcasting in HD, TVNZ’s HD telecasts have been stereo-only due to digital infrastructural complexities.

Nonetheless, it had hoped to implement 5.1 broadcasts by mid-year but didn’t do so until last week’s opening ceremony of the Rugby World Cup.

Moreover, it did so without any fanfare and even journalists who kept inquiring about the 5.1 switchover weren’t informed until after it happened.

Indeed, readers of this site first learnt of it through other readers’ comments, some of which expressed dissatisfaction with the quality of the audio.

It turns out TVNZ’s programme management/scheduling system IBMS has been updating with incorrect audio settings.

Not only does this make it all-but impossible for TVNZ to provide media with a reliable list of Dolby Digital shows but also could stop some from transmitting in 5.1.

It seems extraordinary that three years after going HD for the Olympic Games, TVNZ still can’t provide an HD service as fully-fledged as TV3 or Sky.

And until it does, ScreenScribe.tv is unable to officially or reliably identify which series will be 5.1 — but it’s a good bet most recent US series will be (subject to software bugs).

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One Response to “Why Cleveland — and TVNZ HD — Aren’t Hotter”

  1. Thanks for the update, Phil. Waiting impatiently to enjoy programmes the way they were made and should be screened. In the meantime, I’ll keep enjoying the free programmes on TV3 in Dolby Digital.

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