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MTV North America Broadcast Specs

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Don Joshua
MTV North America Broadcast Specs
on Jan 26, 2011 at 7:19:09 pm

I have a music video that I directed, and am lucky enough to be in a position where it can possibly be submitted to MTV for broadcast. I got a list of changes that must be completed before considering it for air. I have to do some shot replacement, as it had a visible liquor sponsor, and some of the video girls dancing were a little risque (iso body shots). In any case, they didn't give me an exact broadcast output spec (What db level to output, best format...etc). I scoured the internet for a pdf or place on Viacom's website to no-avail. I'm sure the combine talent on this site has done thousands of videos, feature films, and everything in between. Any help or direction would be greatly appreciated.


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Bob Zelin
Re: MTV North America Broadcast Specs
on Jan 26, 2011 at 11:59:55 pm

Hi -
you need to CALL Viacom in NY, and ask for technical standards, and get their delivery specification. Anything you hear on Creative Cow will not match the requirements - this applies to ANY CABLE STATION or any broadcast station - you MUST have the technical deliver specs document, that they will be more than happy to supply to you. Yes, this means making a phone call to Viacom, and actually speaking to a person.

Bob Zelin



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Chad Brewer
Re: MTV North America Broadcast Specs
on Jan 27, 2011 at 12:34:49 am

Yes, like Bob said, call them. We deliver to MTV all the time - keep in mind most everything they will accept requires closed captioning as well.

Yesterday I couldn't find the delivery specs for A&E TV that I had last summer. Without a current contact there, I was left to call the absolute lowest rung on their ladder - the receptionist at their Manhattan office who of course had no idea what a broadcast delivery spec sheet was. After being transferred through many layers of people in scheduling and programming, I finally ended up with a person who emailed me their specs before I even hung up the phone - ALL 59 pages of their specs...

Keep in mind that network delivery specs are not only guidelines you must follow for each network, but also very detailed explanations to the myriad of ways they have to reject your program. Some of the big networks (not MTV) really get off on rejecting programs for arbitrary reasons.

A guy I work with had PBS reject the end credits on his documentary because the same person was listed twice for different roles he played in the post-production of the film...That seems logical, right?

Chad Brewer
Senior Broadcast Videotape Operator
TeleVersions, LLC


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