Test Card W


Test Card W

Test Card W is a test card, an image used to determine the quality of a broadcast television picture. It is an updated 16:9 (1.78:1) widescreen version of Test Card F, which was created by BBC engineer George Hersee. Test Card W is similar to Test Card J, the latter being a 4:3 version. Both appeared for the first time in November 1999.

The colour-bars on the top and right of the image are the full 100 percent saturation version, unlike Test Cards F and J which use the 95 percent type. Extra mirrored arrow-heads on the central axis at the sides mark the positions of the middle 4:3 and 14:9 sections of the image.

As television is usually broadcast 24 hours a day, the test card is now rarely used. The last "known" occasion that this card was broadcast on British screens was Friday 9 January 2004, when early morning tests were carried out on BBC One and BBC Two. BBC Two still closes every weekday morning between 4.00 and 6.00 and during Educational Holidays, but pages from Ceefax rather than test cards are broadcast on these occasions.

Sightings

The last occasion that Test Card W was broadcast on BBC One and BBC Two was Friday 9 January 2004. The times before that were for a few minutes on 3 December 2003 on BBC Two during the 2003 tests; seen for around 20 minutes during Pages from Ceefax time from about 02.20 on 22 June 2003; a brief appearance in the early in the morning of 14 August 2001 in a programme gap; on BBC One between 03.00 and 04.00 on 27 July 2001 (while BBC Two was on reduced power); and during the August 2000 BBC rebroadcast test.

On Freeview, however, Test Card W can be called up at any time using this procedure:

#Tuning to the BBCi channel (105)
#Pressing "yellow" within 30 seconds of the BBCi background appearing
#Tuning to another channel
#Tuning back to BBCi (105)
#Pressing "green" within 30 seconds of the BBCi background appearing
#Waiting for the word "secret" to appear at the top right corner of the screen and a status page appearing
#Entering 3, 3, 5, 8, 2--the numbers spelling 'DELTA' on a mobile phone keypad--followed by Red, Green, Yellow, Blue.

Test Card W should appear within 30 seconds. [http://www.digitalspy.co.uk/forums/showthread.php?t=728925]

Trivia

Test Card W was shown during the infamous power cut of 2000 at Television Centre.

*Power Cut Details:
**Details Info [http://www.tvradiobits.co.uk/bitsandpieces/powercut.htm]
**BBC Article [http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/799360.stm]
**News Report [http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=whGnOGs_ibk]

ee also

*List of BBC test cards
*Test card
*Carole Hersee
*Bubbles the Clown

External links

* [http://www.barney-wol.net/video/testcardw/testcardw.html A history of the card]


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