Berlin Plugfest takes a look at HDR

DTG Plugfest number 3, with Vincent Van Gogh's Irises
Neal Romanek
December 13th 2016 at 2:42PM : By Neal Romanek

This was the third "Plugfest" held by the UK's DTG and German TV-

German TV-Platform (aka Deutsche TV Platform - DTVP) and the DTG (Digital Television Group) UHD Forum held their third, and largest-to-date, Plugfest to date earlier this month at the Fraunhofer-Heinrich-Hertz Institute. The Ultra HD Plugfests by German TV-Platform and DTG have aimed to create a forum members of both organisations, and interested companies and institutions, since 2014. The fourth Ultra HD Plugfest will take place mid 2017 at the DTG headquarters in London.

From 6 - 8 December, engineers and developers from 29 companies, including manufacturers of TV sets, set-top boxes, AV receivers and UHD Blu-ray players, gathered at Fraunhofer HHI in Berlin. Attendees also included infrastructure operators, research institutions, broadcasters and content providers. Over the three days, some 250 test runs were conducted with 22 devices, including displays, receivers, AV receivers, and UHD Blu-ray players with a focus on interoperability (HDMI/HDCP) and High Dynamic Range (HDR).

DTG Plugfest number 3, in Berlin


German TV-Platform is an association of companies, associations and institutions in the digital media space, including private and public broadcasters, device manufacturers, infrastructure operators, equipment and service providers, research institutes and universities, and government agencies. The DTG is a non-profit UK collaboration set up with the purpose of looking after the digital TV marketplace. 

“Considering the ever-growing number of Ultra HD devices and the very recent decisions regarding HDR standards, both interoperability and HDR capabilities – for both PQ and HLG –  are on a very good level,” said Stephan Heimbecher of Sky, also a board member of German TV-Platform and head of its UHD working group. “However, Ultra HD will continue to be a challenging topic for the industry, as specifications in the field of Ultra HD and HDR are constantly evolving.”

 “With PQ and HLG (the two HDR specifications) now specified for HDR in production and programme exchange by the International Telecommunication Union in BT.2100, the door is open for European broadcasters to start Ultra HD services with HDR in 2017,” continued Heimbecher. “The results of the Plugfest are indicating that manufacturers will very likely support both HDR standards, PQ and HLG.” 

“It is very important that various procedures and specifications are tested in practice whilst new products are being developed, which is why events like this are so valuable,” said David Daniels, project director of advanced AV at the DTG. “This was our third international collaboration with the German TV-Platform, and the growing number of Plugfest participants since 2014 clearly shows that our initiative is considered invaluable by the entire industry. With the recent inclusion of HDR for HbbTV in our latest D-Book, we’re sure that the fourth will prove just as exciting.”

DTG Plugfest, Berlin, testing in two rows