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06.08.2011
Broadcast Pix Drives WHYY-TV Control Room Ops
One of the two Granite 5000 systems installed at WHYY-TV

PHILADELPHIA—WHYY-TV is part of WHYY Public Media, and the premier PBS member station in this market, the fourth largest local television market in the nation.

Last summer, we added the Dorrance H. Hamilton Public Media Commons to our existing technology center and office and studio space here on Independence Mall. It's an 8,000-square-foot facility for community media training, special events, and a television production facility. We also updated our legacy TV control room in our Content Production Center earlier this year, converting the former single-purpose facility into a flexible multimedia resource.

Both television control rooms are now anchored with Broadcast Pix Granite live video production systems. We were familiar with operation and capabilities of Broadcast Pix switchers, as we had initially used their Slate video production system while we waited for delivery of an upgraded Granite.

'POD' CONCEPT IN NEW FACILITY

To leverage the capital investment in this technical space, we decided to take a unique approach in the design of our new high-definition video control room. Instead of constructing it around traditional consoles, we installed a collection of "activity pods" that can be used together during a production, or used independently for content creation when the full studio configuration is not being used. The Broadcast Pix Granite made this configuration possible due to its unique approach to file management.

The new Granite switcher is the heart of the "Visual Image" pod, which is located near the video monitor wall and serves as the technical director's station. We have a small audio mixer positioned there as well, although there's a separate fully-featured audio room with a multifunction audio processing system if this is needed for more complicated projects. Other pods in the control room are tasked for ingest and library management, graphics, and used by producers. We're also developing a Web pod to support the creation and streaming of a second program.

Our Granite system provides us with the functionality we need for such a varied suite of applications in our expanded facility. We're delighted with the Granite's built-in Fluent-View displays, character generators, and other workflow tools. They give us plenty of bang for our buck, and also have greatly reduced our equipment costs. We've found that the Granite 5000 product is a very stable and high quality production switcher, and one which provides us with the tools that we need for sophisticated video programs and event productions.

Bill Weber is the vice president and chief technology officer for WHYY Public Media. He may be contacted at bweber@whyy.org. For additional information, contact Broadcast Pix at 978-600-1100 or visit broadcastpix.com.



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