TV Test Patterns


Below are a few excerpts from a terrific UK site by Darren Meldrum TV Test patterns from around the world. Darren’s site includes test patterns from the BBC, Australia, Singapore, Ireland, Sweden, North America and lots more.


Indian Head Probably the most famous American B&W test pattern is the so-called “Indian Head” monoscope pattern. This pattern was originated by RCA in 1939; it was designed to be generated using a special tube called a monoscope, a CRT which had a metal plate target on which the pattern was printed. The black lines of the pattern would interrupt current flow as the pattern was scanned to provide the desired video output. These tubes could only handle black and white – no shades of gray hence they had to be simulated either with a halftone dot pattern or with patterns of fine lines.
This NBC test pattern is dated 1947 but actually dates back to 1941, when commercial TV broadcasts began in America. NBC
Belgium PAL This is the 16:9 PAL version of the Philips PM5644 test pattern as used by BRT, the Dutch-language Belgian broadcast organization.

Keep Reading...

New GoPros And A Drone

2 New GoPros And a Drone

GoPro introduces 2 new GoPros and a Drone. The new Hero 5 Black ($399 )includes a 2-inch touch screen display. The new Hero 5 Session ($299) is intended as an entry level camera. Both cameras have built-in waterproof casings, good for up to 10 meters. Both cameras can shoot 4K video at 30 frames. The […]

Read More
SnapRollMedia prepares Drone for FAA approved filming

7 Video Companies Approved to Use Drones

Seven Video Companies Allowed to Use Drones

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
Produce Video For The NY Times

Produce Video For The NY Times

Get Ready To Produce Video For The NY Times You can produce video for the NY Times. If you can point to a short doc or samples on the web and can pitch an idea, you could produce an OP-Doc for the NY Times. Op-Doc is short for opinionated documentaries. They are typically 5 -10 […]

Read More


3 thoughts on “TV Test Patterns

  1. Cajujndweeb

    Really cool! If only you guys would find an old test card for the Emergency Broadcast System from the 1960’s-70’s. Now THAT would be rad!

    Reply
  2. brainy

    I remember the old EBS Test Pattern.It had the old”CD” White Triangle in a blue dot and the letters were in Red.Lots of stations even did a jingle along with the attention signal.Those were the days now gone by with time.

    Reply
  3. W.B.

    Re the NBC test pattern: 1947 was the year when the wedge calibration dots, their size and their position were modified. That particular variation seemed to be for internal consumption, as I did not see any evidence of this pattern in that form being used on the air. The copyright notice on the outer lower right quadrant was only used on NBC-owned stations.

    Reply

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