Fox Sports is pumping up the sound this year for all of its events broadcast
in "Fox Widescreen" format.
The sports cable network has refitted broadcast-transmission trucks and its
network infrastructure to deliver Dolby Laboratories Inc.'s "Dolby Digital 5.1"
The first such broadcast was January's National Football Conference
championship game, beamed to the Charlotte, N.C.; Los Angeles; and Washington,
"In order to deliver the highest-quality experience to our viewers, we
decided to incorporate Dolby Digital 5.1 into our Fox Widescreen sports
broadcasts," said Jim DeFilippis, vice president of television engineering for
the Fox Technology Group.
"Now our viewers can enjoy the full sounds of the game, creating a much more
intense and enveloping experience," he added.
To do so, Fox transmits "Dolby E" audio from its remote trucks to station
affiliates. From there, the Dolby E audio is transcoded into Dolby Digital 5.1
for transmission to local viewers.
Fox affiliates are now installing that equipment, and throughout the year,
more and more viewers will have access to the surround-sound signals.
The upgrade is significant, given the fact that some 20 million
digital-cable, satellite and terrestrial digital-TV set-top boxes and another 22
million home receivers are capable of delivering Dolby 5.1