Currently the master video is a 40GB Quicktime Animation MOV. I'm trying to figure out what codec/settings to pick as I compress it to deliver it to a TV network (specifically MTV in the USA). I'm blindly assuming H.264 (MP4, 1920x1080, 23.976fps, NTSC, Progressive, AAC audio, 1.1gb size) will work because I tried it on my TV and it looked fantastic, but not sure if it'll be the same by the time they air it, can anyone confirm?!
Broadcasters have very specific requirements for the files to work with their servers.
A universal standard hasn't really been established yet, but MPEG2 MXF files in OP1a format seem to be the most usual at the moment, probably with video at 50Mbps or higher and audio uncompressed 48kHz, 16 or 24 bit.
You want to have as few transcodes as possible between origination and transmission and you definitely don't want to let the quality settings be any lower than those above at any point in the chain.