Bexel, a provider of broadcast services and equipment sales and rentals — based in Burbank, Calif. — will supply its custom Eagle Announcer System for the upcoming season of “Monday Night Football” on ESPN.
While other integrated sportscasting products put the circuitry and configuration device directly in front of the announcer, the Eagle Announcer System splits the functionality into three parts: the rack-mount Central Interface, the Announcer Control Interface (ACI) and the Headset Interface Module (HIM), taking up less space in the broadcast booth.
The Eagle Announcer System was created after ESPN came to Bexel looking for a solution to reduce the space requirements of the audio equipment in the “Monday Night Football” announcer booth.
“While this request was brought to us by technical managers, it was actually in response to a desire by the on-air talent to have something much smaller and less complicated than what they previously supplied,” says Andrew McHaddad, chief audio engineer, Bexel.
The Central Interface provides easy access to the maximum amount of features, including those for quality control and troubleshooting, which are both currently unavailable in other products. All signals, IFB, “Talk-Back,” Broadcast Microphone Output, etc., are featured on an easy-to-understand XLR equipped rear-panel. The front panel includes signal level meters and easily-accessed configuration switches.
The compact Announcer Control Interface (ACI) is the smallest designed for the U.S. market, featuring three illuminated switches for controlling the broadcast path and Talk-Back outputs plus volume controls for the announcers’ ears. Since the connection to the Central Interface is via an RJ-45 cable, wiring at the announcer’s location is minimized.
The Headset Interface Module (HIM) connects to the central interface by way of a supplied four-pair, multi-pin cable. Multiple headset types are supported including connections for both XLR and ¼” phone-type. The HIM features an ultra-linear microphone preamplifier designed for medium gain, low noise and very high headroom.