Ripples from ESPN's decision to launch a new 3-D sports network are being felt in the U.S. production community.
The most recent evidence is last week's announcement by NEP Broadcasting that it was rolling out two new 3-D production trucks this month. They will make their debut providing production services for ESPN 3D's coverage of the State Farm Home Run Derby July 12 from Angel Stadium in Anaheim, CA.
NEP's SS31 is a revamp of the mobile production truck the production services company cut its 3-D teeth on. SS32 is a new 3-D vehicle. Both are built for 3-D production and will give NEP a strong presence in this emerging slice of the mobile production market.
According to George Hoover, chief technology officer of NEP, 2010 will prove to be the "year of the great 3-D test" a period when everyone from viewers to CE vendors, TV programmers to broadcast service providers learn if 3-D TV enjoys success similar to what 3-D films have found in the theater.
In this podcast interview, Hoover discusses the new vehicles, the thinking behind the trucks, the challenge of finding engineering and production talent for 3-D work and where live 3-D television production may be headed.