The Sci Fi Channel has its second birthday on December 1 and will celebrate by switching from 4:3 to 16:9 ratio across the channel.
Around half the shows on the channel will be broadcast in true 16:9 detail. Those programmes that are only available in 4:3 will be pillar-boxed with black stripes down the side.
“Star Trek: Next Generation, Voyager, Deep Space Nine are only available in 4:3,” a spokesperson told TV Tonight.
“Star Trek: Enterprise is available in 16:9 full frame along with programmes like Battlestar Galactica, Heroes, Angel, Stargate, Stargate: Atlantis and movies.”
Even Buffy is available in 16:9 with the exception of the first season.
Behind the scenes it has taken the channel months to prepare.
“You have to re-order the tapes in 16:9, you then have to go through the keying process and get them to Foxtel for playout.
“It’s something that our viewers have been asking for. They’re very tech-savvy, dedicated and they like to watch their programmes as they were intended.”
TV1, which is also under the same management is considering a switch to 16:9 but with older programmes, a greater proportion of the content is in 4:3.
Also for the birthday month Sci Fi is introducing Eureka at 8:30pm Thursday December 4th.