How to get the best quality out of the digital television standard

PBS convened and CPB supported the PBS Quality Group’s evangelism for DTV quality in 2010 and 2011. The group, including tech specialists from stations, series producers and PBS, and consultants, held a series of workshops around the country, and members prepared these articles. Here are PDFs of the pieces published in Current. 1. Maintaining quality
You can’t always ‘fix it in post.’

Meeting the HD demand: PBS matching rollout to buyers’ slow uptake

With its pockets emptier than usual and few viewers demanding high-definition pictures, PBS is moving to HD more cautiously than the commercial networks. Rather than converting its schedule overnight, as the networks seemed to have done, PBS’s HD planners suggest moving to the fine, widescreen picture as fast as viewers buy receivers capable of displaying it. For every 10,000 HD receivers purchased, the network proposes to produce one additional hour of high-def programming. PBS now broadcasts about 48.5 hours of HDTV a year. Nearly half of that—22 hours—comes from the Latino drama American Family and the rest from monthly specials.

HDTV debut: full-blown spectacle

Even on crappy old analog TV — the way nearly all of its audience will see it Nov. 9 — PBS’s premiere high-def offering is a Whitman’s Sampler of eye candy. Made by public TV’s most experienced high-def production team, at KCTS in Seattle,
“Chihuly Over Venice” amuses your eye with color while impressing you with the
glassworking skills of Dale Chihuly’s sidemen, and introducing you to the glass master, a
mercurial Seattle character. Producer/director Gary Gibson, who documented a Chihuly exhibition in 1993, returned to the artist more than two years ago to begin the station’s next big HDTV project–the first without much aerial footage, after a successful string of Over This-and-That travelogues. The occasion was Chihuly’s ambitious plan to make a series of large chandeliers in
major glassworking regions — Seattle, Finland, Ireland, Mexico and Venice — and then hanging
the works over the canals of Venice.