360 Replay at Super Bowl LI

360 replay at the Super Bowl

FOX Sports joined with Intel to bring a new Player’s-Eye View to Super Bowl LI. This is not captured by Go Pros worn by players like Fox referee GoPro cams. This new system uses Intel’s 360 Replay technology. It includes 38 separate 5K cameras circling the playing field, each with its own dedicated server. Five miles of fiber optic cables connect it all to one control room, where six producers from Intel and one producer from Fox Sports determine and produce which 360 degree replays will be used in the broadcast.


This is an enormous amount of data – about 1 terabyte per each 15-30 second clip. This much data allows any point in time to be re-created in volumetric or 3D space. Any cubic inch on the field is captured in what they call a “voxel,” a contraction of “vox” for volume and “el” for element. Just like a virtual camera system that is created in 3D video games, a virtual camera can be created and positioned at the real football player’s eye line. At one point the producers even experimented with superimposing a face guard over the view, but that was rejected.

Fox Sports uses this capability to create what they call “Be the Player” which can generate a point-of-view anywhere on the field including a player’s POV on the field. TV viewers can then see what the player sees as well as the choices he had. The director chooses which player to cover. Depending on the play it might be a receiver, quarterback or other position. This is not instant replay because it takes a couple minutes to render. That’s why you see a 360 replay during time outs or other non-action periods.

In this year’s Super Bowl, there were three examples of 360 replay – two were “Be The Player” and one was a 360 view of a key play. They will probably be available on YouTube soon.

This system is not likely to be used in high school football. It took a month to retrofit the Houston stadium with all of the equipment needed for the data capture. This kind of data capture is called “freeD.” There is so much data that, like any 3D environment, it can be used to spin around and zoom. While this 360 replay system has been used in baseball, the Olympics, and the NBA, the Super Bowl was the first time it enabled TV audiences to see the game from the players’ POV what Fox calls “Be the Player.”

To promote its 360 replay technology, Intel uses it in an ad featuring Tom Brady in mundane everyday life. It demonstrates how this technology can make anything look epic.

Super Bowl Ad: Tom Brady Epic 360 for Intel

CNET Video Explains 360 Replay

360 degree video is not limited to TV and entertainment, see this 360 Degree Video from American Museum of Natural History.

Keep Reading...

Digital Bolex Ships

Digital Bolex is Available

The Digital Bolex is now available.

Read More
Fourth Wall in Ferris Bueller

Breaking The Fourth Wall How One Word Can Double Your Viewers

How to double your video video views by breaking the fourth wall.

Read More

Kodachrome – A New Magazine from Kodak

“Kodachrome” is a limited edition magazine geared toward people who love “art, film and analog culture.” It goes beyond the world of analog photography and filmmaking. Kodak says it also about film, writing, sculpture, music, graphics. It is about art and analog culture. Issue 01 is being published in a “limited edition run” with 76 […]

Read More
faces places

Faces Places – Art Documentary/Road Movie

An 89-year old leading figure of the French New Wave, and an acclaimed 33 year-old French photographer and muralist co-direct this French art documentary/road movie. They travel in a photo van which has a photo booth and an oversized printer. Their mission is to make portraits of ordinary people. These portraits are super enlarged so […]

Read More


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


  • Forbes Magazine calls VideoUniversity one of the best business-to-business sites for digital video production.
  • WINNER
    Videography Magazine's
    "Website of the Month" Award
  • WINNER
    PC Magazine Online "Best Desktop Video Site" Award
  • WINNER
    CyberFilm School's "FOUR STAR" Award