Q. I’ve been impressed with the recent NFL games in 4K on Fox and ESPN’s 4K games with college football and basketball. The picture is so much clearer than the high-def picture. But let me ask you if any NBA games are in 4K? I have Comcast where I live and they do a lot of 4K stuff, but I don’t think I’ve seen any NBA games in 4K. — Jim, Evanston, Illinois.
Jim, as you know, Fox offers both NFL regular season (Thursday night games) and playoff games in 4K as well as select college football and basketball contests. ESPN also broadcasts some college action in 4K.
While the picture quality, in my humble opinion, can vary, it can truly enhance the viewing experience when it’s done right. Both Fox’s 4K broadcast of last weekend’s Rams-Seahawks wild card game, and ESPN’s 4K Skycam feed of the Alabama-Ohio State college football championship game looked sensational.
It’s a shame that Fox isn’t keeping the momentum going with a 4K broadcast of today’s Bucs-Saints game (or yesterday’s Rams-Packers contest). Neither game is being offered in 4K.
Perhaps because the two aforementioned football games looked so good in 4K, I’ve received several e-mails in the last week from readers asking about whether the NBA is available in the picture format. Unfortunately, the answer is just barely.
DIRECTV is the only pay TV provider that offers NBA games in 4K. The satcaster airs some NBA TV games in 4K, and Denver Nuggets games which are produced by the Altitude Channel. In fact, DIRECTV has two games in 4K scheduled for tonight, the 76ers facing the Thunder at 7 p.m. ET on channel 105, and the Jazz against the Nuggets at 8 p.m. ET on channel 106.
Comcast, your pay TV provider, has been very aggressive in carrying 4K sporting events in the last year, but it currently does not provide any NBA games in 4K. (I asked the cable operator last week which confirmed it does not have the NBA in 4K; no reason was given.) It’s obvious why Comcast doesn’t have the Altitude games in 4K; it’s not carrying the regional sports channel. But I’m surprised that it doesn’t offer the NBA TV games. Perhaps that will change later this season.
Jim, hope that helps. Happy viewing, and stay safe!
Have a question about new TV technologies? Send it to The TV Answer Man at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please include your first name and hometown in your message.
— Phillip Swann