Originally featured on BroadcastEngineering.com
Studio Technologies keeps production communications open for Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade
Television production crews working on this year's Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York City used 2-Wire to 4-Wire Interface units from three Studio Technologies (www.studio-tech.com) to streamline the set up of their intercom operations.
The parade's main production trucks were located on the west side of Broadway between 34th and 35th streets. The grand procession stand was located around the corner from the trucks on the north side of 34th Street. Fiber-optic cables that carried HD video, audio and communications signals were run from the production trucks, down into the subway under 34th Street and back up to a tower on the south side of 34th Street. From there the cables were run overhead on special poles to the production platform across from the procession stand — a run of hundreds of feet. The platform was raised to accommodate normal foot traffic.
Intercom audio was sent over the fiber system to the production platform where the original, digitized four-wire signal was converted to analog.
"For each channel of intercom signal sent from the truck, we would get a four-wire send and receive line of audio that was plugged into the Model 46 to convert it back into the two-wire audio format necessary to feed the belt packs," said Peter Erskine, freelance audio technician specializing in wireless systems for the parade that included the wireless communications. "The hardware belt packs were then distributed along the street for all the different departments to use, including cameras, staging and Teleprompters."
He said the Studio Technologies Model 46 Interface units made coverage of the parade much easier to accomplish, while delivering the audio quality necessary for high-level, critical communications.