ABC HD (Australian TV channel)

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ABC HD.jpg
Launched 1 January 2008 – 22 July 2010
June 2016 (revival)
Network ABC Television
Owned by Australian Broadcasting Corporation
Picture format 720p (HDTV) 16:9
Country Australia
Language English
Broadcast area Nationally
Sister channel(s) ABC
ABC Kids
ABC News 24
Freeview ABC (virtual) 20
Foxtel (virtual) 202

ABC HD was a national public television channel in Australia. It was available nationally to digital terrestrial and cable television viewers in Australia, Following the government's decision to remove the SD Primary Channel limitations, the channel will return as an HD simulcast on channel 20 in June 2016.[1]



Starting on 1 January 2002 the channel was a prime-time simulcast of ABC1 NSW, except that it had no watermark and was upconverted from standard definition to high definition 1080i. On 1 January 2005 it was changed to 576p to accommodate the launch of ABC2 and gradually expanded its operating hours. On 1 January 2008 ABC HD was enhanced to 720p to mark the start of native high-definition content, and an "ABC HD" logo was developed, appearing as an on-screen watermark.

For its entire existence, the channel spent most of its hours providing a high definition simulcast of ABC1 NSW. As a result, viewers outside of New South Wales would see Sydney-based news bulletins and other localised content. The purpose of this as of 2008, was to provide high-definition versions of ABC1 shows when available (Prior to this, the broadcaster relied on regulation exemptions that allowed it to meet a high-definition quota using content upscaled from standard definition).

There have been exceptions to the ABC1 simulcast: During the 2008 Beijing Paralympics, ABC HD became a dedicated sports broadcaster, simulcasting the dedicated coverage on ABC2 for most of the day. The 2009 VFL Grand Final was shown exclusively live on ABC HD. For a time up until ABC HD branding ceased, ABC HD screened a "7:30 Select" national highlights package instead of the NSW version of Stateline.

On 10 June 2010, the ABC HD watermark was replaced with the ABC1 logo. From this time forward, the channel became an ABC1 simulcast again.


ABC HD ceased being a simulcast of ABC1 from 6 July 2010 in Tasmania and the ACT; 7 July 2010 in Queensland, South Australia, Western Australia and Northern Territory; and on 8 July 2010 in Victoria and New South Wales, all replaced by a looped pre-launch promotion for ABC News 24 on channel 24.[2] This made ABC the second broadcaster in Australia to permanently discontinue the high definition simulcast of its main channel, following the removal of Ten HD to create Ten's former sports and now entertainment channel One in 2009.

2016 revival[edit]

ABC will recommence simulcasting in HD in June 2016. As a result, ABC News 24 will be reduced to standard definition.[1]


  1. ^ a b Perry, Kevin (18 November 2015). "ABC TV to make the switch to High Definition in 2016". DeciderTV. Retrieved 4 January 2016. 
  2. ^ "ABC News 24 hype reel unveiled". mUmbrella. 8 July 2010. Archived from the original on 10 July 2010. Retrieved 8 July 2010.