Stewart explained, “Our facility was over twelve years old and some of the equipment was almost thirty years old. We needed a major upgrade that would give us higher quality pictures for our live services and broadcast TV programme. We also wanted to go 16:9. As Videocraft specialises in these types of broadcast facilities and solutions we put together a tender and asked them for their advice.”
Stewart met with Videocraft NSW state manager Andy Liell to discuss requirements, options and critically, budget.
He continued, “We had a budget but it was one that required Videocraft to be creative and I’m delighted to say there were. We simply didn’t have the money to purchase all new equipment, so Andy put together an amazing deal based on a hybrid solution consisting of their best high quality rental equipment and some brand new kit.”
The Videocraft solution included four Sony BVP-E30 SD triax camera chains and a Panasonic AV-HS450 vision switcher with Venitex Aux Bus control panels providing the NSCC with simple switching for two stage side screens independent of the broadcast feed.
Stewart added, “The solution was a good one and the way Videocraft installed the switching console so we could overlay song lyrics over live video was particularly clever. Andy also designed the system so we could independently switch the side screens from the broadcast cut using the flexibility and versatility of the Panasonic vision switcher. It was very clear that Videocraft understand how to utilise the full potential of the AV-HS450 and how, by using third party add-ons, we could achieve a very cost effective workflow.”
The Videocraft installation also integrated AJA Ki Pro hard disk recorders that enabled a fully file based workflow for the NSCC’s post requirements, a Ross router, Sony monitoring, new Sony projectors, Fujinon ENG and box lenses and all back end glue, wiring and cabling.
As the NSCC facility is staffed by volunteers, ease of use was something that had particular attention paid to it with Stewart commenting, “Our volunteers are not broadcast industry professionals so Videocraft had to take that into consideration. The broadcast facility we now have is simple to use and yet gives us very high quality results. It’s a great example of how Videocraft have created a full broadcast facility on a very tight budget. As a result we have all our bases covered as, by upconverting, we are able to produce HD content for all our in house requirements whilst delivering an SD master for broadcast. Our aim is to upgrade to HD cameras in the near future. The other points worth mentioning were around Videocraft’s expertise and professional approach. Nothing was too much trouble, we were able to test before we purchased and no question was ever left unanswered.”