Top Gear in HD from November

Top Gear

Good news for all you car fans, Top Gear will be available in stunning high-definition on BBC HD from November 15th.

The announcement was made today by Danielle Nagler, Head of BBC HD on the popular and pleasantly honest BBC Internet Blog.

The decision follows an amazing response to a question Danielle asked a couple of months earlier on which programmes we’d like to see most in HD; going to show that some heads of broadcast do indeed listen.

73 thoughts on “Top Gear in HD from November”

  1. @ AndrewM I’m sorry to hear of your experiences, but surely you will find examples of bad customer service at any PLC, especially one with nearly ten million customers.

  2. The posting from Boingle is quite right.

    For those in doubt the Gadget Show spent some time studying HDMI cables and the conclusion was that the hyped and costly cables were of no benefit, assuming a normal length of cable. As others have said a digital signal is just a string of 0s and 1s.

    If you are experiencing radio interference (which can cause break up or freezing of signal) then I would fit an HDMI cable with ferrite cores at each end. This is good practice and can give a substantial improvement. Sometimes your own equipment can produce spurious signals that are strong enough to be picked up on the connecting cables, resulting in loss of quality. Ferrite cores help to prevent this. Such cables often cost less that gold plated connectors.

    However, the primary legitimate use for silver and gold contacts is in connectors carrying radio signals in the GHz region. Unfortunately some large chain stores and specialist suppliers now promote such connectors for purposes for which they are not required.

  3. @admin #3
    Are you suggesting most people are using digitalspy forums to judge picture quality and not their own eyes?

    well this guy didn’t read digitalspy – taken from BBC HD blog
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/bbcinternet/2009/09/picture_quality_on_hd_a_respon.html

    “231. At 3:16pm on 23 Sep 2009, Easybourne wrote:

    I has just stumbled (via Google) on this blog post as I was looking for other people that had noticed the same degradation of BBC HD quality of recent weeks.

    I have had Freesat for about seven or eight months and have notice that the ‘Wow Factor’ has definitely gone from BBC HD. There is a definite softness to the image, lack of pop, and, most worryingly a high incidence and proliferation of encoding artefacts that appear to be a result of poor encoding AND a too-low bitrate”

  4. Will it be in Dolby Digital 5.1 and will there be a DOG?
    Wonder why they dropped the footy? Probably realised that the bitrate is too low for acceptable picture quality.
    There is no doubt that the picture quality has dropped slightly on BBC HD and I don’t read Digital Spy either.
    Question is why did they nearly half the bit rate? No other channel or i-player has appeared so why why why?

  5. Andy Quested said that the BBC had acted “to reduce the unsustainable bit rates for HD transmission”, warning that in the absence of such action “it will have no future or will only be available to those willing to pay for and able to get super premium services”.

    Is he serious? HD unsustainable unless they use bit rates which do not even qualify as HD according to the EBU definiton of HD broadcasts.

  6. I am truly delighted that the Top Gear team will be in HD. I think this is one of the most amusing and light hearted shows on TV.

    However, I do wonder if Jeremy Clarkson might be of the opinion that BBC HD needs ‘more power’ (bits)……………?

  7. prison warden
    if you care to read the threads you’ll see I have made many contributions – whether they’re interesting is a matter of personal choice. My point is that whenever there is a new thread with some useful information, it nearly always ends up with a lengthly discussion about the BBC dropping bit rates and how dreadful the picture quality is as a result. I find that irritating and somewhat disrespectful to this site managers’ effort to pass on useful information.

  8. Hi off topic a bit, when I fast forward a program recorded off BBC HD I get picture breakup, not worrying in it self, but this only happens with BBC HD and not ITV HD or any SD programs. wonder why? any body know???

  9. @64

    Robert, this breakup is directly related to the change of BBC HD encoder – try it with anything recorded before the change and it will work flawlessly.

    The bit rate issue does have other consequences.

  10. There is one thing to say about top gear in hd . Great news. That it.
    With bit rates you have a topic which is a popular discussion which neeeds its own page really.

  11. @Robert I have the same problem. at first i thought it was my hard drive playing up when under load, but later found out, its this new bit rate thing.

    Doesnt bother me much, maybe a fix humax to do with a firmware update.

  12. Freeview box retune required.
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/technology/8280067.stm

    ‘ITV3, ITV4 and some BBC radio stations will also be affected. About 460,000 households are expected to permanently lose access to ITV3 and ITV4.’

    The technical changes behind the upgrade will eventually enable High Definition (HD) television to be broadcast on Freeview. HD is already available on the free-to-view satellite service Freesat.

    Another potential 460,000 Freesat viewers?

  13. I suspect that the majority of Freeview viewers attached to relay (as opposed to main) transmitters are not aware of the implications of the retune on 30 September. The information has been available, but not on sites that many of them would see.

    A few people are not going to be happy about the loss of football that is occasionally on ITV4!!

    An engineering test channel (usually identifying as channel 501) continues from Crystal Palace, but many Freeview sets and boxes can’t recognise it.

    I agree that this could result in more customers for Freesat.

  14. I am so happy about Top Gear coming to BBCHD. By the way Freesat HD is the way forward if you live in the Netherlands. Mine is the only house for miles with a sky dish.

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