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Standards for satellite TV broadcasting: Directive

A Council Directive on the adoption of standards for satellite broadcasting of television signals (92/38/EEC of 11 May 1992) establishes the HD-MAC standard for not completely digital high-definition television (HDTV) transmissions, and the D2-MAC standard for other not fully ...
A Council Directive on the adoption of standards for satellite broadcasting of television signals (92/38/EEC of 11 May 1992) establishes the HD-MAC standard for not completely digital high-definition television (HDTV) transmissions, and the D2-MAC standard for other not fully digital transmissions in 16:9 format. Completely digital transmissions (not otherwise covered by the Directive) may use only a ETSI-standardized system.

Measures to be undertaken by the Member States concern existing and new services and new equipment (satellite transmissions, TV sets and satellite receivers, cable redistribution, and encrypted conditional access systems). Inter alia, only the HD-MAC standard may be used for transmission of a not completely digital TV service in the high definition format, and the D2-MAC standard for 16:9 aspect ratio services receivable by viewers on domestic satellite receiving equipment. All not completely digital 625-line satellite TV services starting after 1 January 1995 and receivable by domestic satellite equipment shall use the D2-MAC standard (PAL, SECAM or D-MAC transmissions may be made simultaneously). From 1 January 1994 new TV sets, satellite receivers or video recorders with 16:9 format shall possess a D2-MAC decoder, and other new equipment shall have a standardized socket for decoder connection. New cable redistribution systems shall be configured to permit HD-MAC transmission.

The Commission will propose, not later than December 1993, measures geared to the widespread introduction up to January 1995 of transmissions using the D2-MAC standard, with an increasing share of 16:9. If necessary, it shall submit proposals before January 1995 on HDTV standardization policy, taking into account the results of European RTD collaboration, and the work of the standardization organizations and interest groups.

The Directive applies until 31 December 1998 and is to be accompanied by commercial measures based on a Memorandum of Understanding signed by the parties concerned plus, where appropriate, measures to support the creation of a European market for D2-MAC, 16:9 and HD-MAC.

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