BBC Video Standards

I’m following up my last post on video scopes, signals, and levels with a link to some more information. For those of you who would like to learn more about video quality and broadcast standards, check out the BBC’s page on “policies, requirements, standards and best practice guidelines.” Available for download are PDFs and Word files on exactly what is required for BBC programming, as well as guides on widescreen and HD. Most television stations will have slightly differing lists of requirements, but BBC broadcast technicians are nothing short of legendary, and the Beeb’s rules are generally known as the highest industry standard around the world.

Admittedly, this data is less important to readers who are film snobs or hoping to avoid broadcast outlets, but anyone working with video of any form would do well to look over these lists. A rough working knowledge on what makes a quality video signal can be just as helpful (and easier to learn) as what makes a quality image. If you can’t afford to hire a video engineer who already knows this stuff, have a quick look. It can also be helpful to compare these stats to the specs of any video hardware you are planning to purchase. You can also read some more in-depth technical details on the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers website, but that is much heavier going.