Is Euro 2024 in 4K and HDR? BBC confirms it will be HDR but not 4K

We’re on the cusp of another major football tournament in Euro 2024, and we bet that that’s question you want answered is whether you can watch it in glorious 4K HDR.

If that is the question that you want answered, then we’re going to provide some answers. As always though, it’s a little complicated.

Euro 2020 (which took place in 2021 due to the pandemic), and the 2022 FIFA World Cup tournaments were both produced and presented in 4K HDR, so you’d be hoping that the trend continues for Euro 2024.

Can you watch Euro 2024 in 4K HDR?

The answer to this question is yes and no. Yes in that you can watch it in HDR, and no in that it will not be presented at 4K resolution.

Instead, people viewing at home will view the tournament in 1080p HDR, which was also how the 2024 Champions League Final was presented to audiences.

We first heard of Euro 2024 not being produced in 4K HDR in 2023 when Flatpanels HD reported that it won’t be produced in 4K.

No reasons were given at that time for why, but it’s emerged that the expense of producing a month-long tournament is one factor, the technical challenge of being able to capture and broadcast in 4K HDR is cited as another, and finally, younger people moving towards mobile devices (which don’t really need 4K resolution as much) is seen as another obstacle in the way of 4K broadcasting.

We can’t help but feel disappointed by the change in tack given that over the last ten years there has been a movement towards presenting big sporting events in 4K HDR.

Given the BBC has demonstrated for years that it’s able to produce in both 4K and HLG HDR, while also creating SD defintion streams/broadcasts, it shows it can be done but it would seem that broadcasters aren’t willing to make the jump.

Is this move implying a lack of interest in 4K HDR broadcasts for major events? Currently no. The Wimbledon 2024 tennis tournament will be shown in 4K HDR (Centre Court matches) on iPlayer, and the 2024 Paris Olympics will also be produced in 4K HDR, though it’s unlikely that the BBC show 4K HDR streams for the latter as Discovery still owns the broadcast rights and weren’t too keen on sharing the 4K feed with others.

We emailed the BBC and it confirmed that streams will be “in HDR, but not in UHD. So will have high dynamic range and wide colour gamut, but won’t be in 4K resolution”.

It’s not the result we were hoping for, and let’s hope it’s not the beginning of a downward trend as far as 4K TV programming is concerned.

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