MONTREAL—WTLW TV44 and its second channel, the West Ohio Sports Net, TV 44.2, a full power, locally owned television station in Lima, Ohio, have completed a master control rebuild with the Miranda iTX integrated playout platform at the core.
The Miranda solution replaced aging analog equipment with an HD-ready workflow that supports file-based content and includes an NVISION 8144 router with redundant NV9000 controllers, a dual-channel Vertigo character generator, Kaleido-X multiviewer and a Densité frame populated with Densité IRD cards.
iTX’s integrated, end-to-end workflow capabilities streamline core playout processes for WTLW, and the station made its purchase decision based on the low cost of ownership, scalability and playout performance.
“Most stations of our size are affiliated with a network, with lots of airtime filled with content from a network feed. In our case, though, much of our content is locally produced. Before iTX, our workflow was missing a very important component, and iTX has proven to be the tool we needed to assemble everything we produce and get it on air,” Jeff Klingler, chief engineer at WTLW, said. “Our on-air HD picture looks like a million bucks.”
The solution includes iTX framework servers for centralized system services, central content storage, HD/SD SDI encoding, digital file ingest, playout of dual 720p streams with embedded AES audio multiplexed to WTLW’s transmitter and controlled user access for operations or services within the iTX system via three workstations.
WTLW broadcasts 24/7 to 220,000 homes in 14 counties across northwest Ohio and northeastern Indiana with a mix of in-house and on-location religious productions, local community information, sports, talk and classic syndicated TV shows.
Before the install, workflow was a concern for WTLW because the master control room is not typically staffed 24-hours a day, which drove the desire to take full advantage of iTX’s automated playout. Operators use the iTX client GUI to make required changes when manual schedule control is required or live segments need to be taken.
“One good example of how iTX has improved our situation is that after WOSN’s traffic manager leaves for the day, he can modify the schedule, organize sub-clips and air a high school basketball game that evening— all from his home,” Klingler said.
Flexibility and redundancy also factored in the station’s choice.
“The pairing of the NVISION router and Kaleido-X multiviewer gives us flexibility in signal path and monitoring capacity, and the robust back-end design of the iTX system provides excellent reliability and stability for our on-air playout,” WTLW Engineering System Designer Ken Vedder said, “Also, a single vendor solution not only ensures that our workflow is seamless from ingest to playout, but that everything is covered under a single support contract.”