At 1 p.m. Eastern on Sunday, February 2, 2020, Fox Sports flipped a switch and began a daylong 4K HDR 60fps broadcast, culminating in the first such delivery of the Super Bowl game. In a production like this, there’s always the possibility that something could go wrong, but from where Fox Sports sits, it was smooth sailing. Digital Trends was there to take you behind the scenes.
We’ve already shown you what Fox has been doing to get ready. This entire week has been a lead-up to the big game, and while most of the involved on-camera talent and crew had once seemed relaxed and jovial, it now felt a bit more serious. Confident, determined, focused.
Then there were the fans. Oh, the fans, who enjoyed showing the enthusiasm for their teams in terms of decibels. Even outdoors at Fox’s pregame broadcast, the roar of the amassing crowd was intense.
Later, inside the stadium, the intensity grew as DJ Khaled mixed music while calling for fans to scream. They did, and grew increasingly louder as kickoff neared.
In fact, after America the Beautiful and The Star-Spangled Banner had been sung, the roar of applause drowned out a four-jet military flyover, though admittedly, the planes chose not to engage their afterburners as we had seen in rehearsals earlier in the week.
From the kickoff, through halftime, right until the celebratory confetti was blasted into the air after the clock ran out, the broadcast went off without a hitch. In our video above, we take you behind the scenes at every stage of the production, showing you what you can’t see through your TV.
— Digital Trends (@DigitalTrends) February 3, 2020
Tech was more essential than ever to this year’s Super Bowl. On multiple occasions, several of the hundreds of cameras were coordinated to show multi-angle views of some contentious plays and touchdowns. Without the tech, the game score could have been dramatically altered.
For those at home, I hope Fox Sports’ efforts to produce a full-day 4K HD 60fps broadcast paid off as handsomely as it did behind the scenes. I did receive reports that there were some difficulties with streams dropping out, but as I understand it, those all took place through various cable providers, satellite networks, and streaming app platforms. I’m not especially surprised, given the scale of this event.
In the end, I think Fox’s ambitious efforts set the tone for future large-scale sports event broadcasts, hopefully signaling our at-home viewing experience will only get better and better.