Sky's HD clips are there for all to see – provided you have a decent spec PC and a quality screen. But if you can't access them - here's a quick review.
I paired up the Philips HD friendly Media Center PC the MCP9350I/05 with the Philips 37PF9830 screen downloaded the four 50MB files and hit play in Windows Media. All four clips are certainly good quality, but I suspect they aren't high definition in way that we’ll get to see it properly via satellite, cable and of course through Blu-ray and HD DVD. The clips are encoded using Windows Media 10 while Sky’s satellite footage will be in the better quality MPEG4 derivative H.264.
Of the four the best is the Rugby in the rain. The detail on the faces of the players is excellent, the colours are really rich and you can actually see the droplets as they fall. The other Rugby clip – the Haka is slightly lees impressive.
The two National Geographic channel clips both look fine, but you are more blown away by the quality of the colours rather than the richness of the detail. Two other things to note are firstly that the clips are in the 4:3 format – very strange as ideally Sky will want people to view these clips on wide and flat TVs. Secondly they are in the 1440 x 1080 resolution as opposed to 1920 x 1080 which will be standard for some of Sky’s HD footage.
Can we have some football now please?