| Grass Valley’s Kayenne switcher package|
SACO, MAINE —For the past 25 years, CSP Mobile Productions has been a big player in the mobile production industry, with a concentration on live sports.
Knowing that our production output depends on our equipment, we’ve always invested in quality. We first implemented the Grass Valley Kayenne Video Production Center in October 2010 as part of an overhaul of our mobile fleet from SD to HD. Not only is Grass Valley equipment reliable and easily upgradable, but our customers also ask for it. Following the successful launch of Kayenne in our HD3 mobile unit, we implemented the system in two additional HD trucks and plan to purchase a fourth Kayenne for the truck we’re currently building, HD4, a 53-foot expando slated for a launch in December.
When choosing a switcher for our HD mobile units, our requirements were simple: we needed a modular unit that could handle multiple feeds and offered a familiar design with high-end features. The Kayenne was one of the few switchers meeting those criteria. Initially, I was concerned I wouldn’t be able to find a local TD who knew how to operate Kayenne, but that fear was quickly put to rest when we checked out its feature set.
Kayenne allows operators to set specific rules regarding the handling of different program elements, with many operators already familiar with this feature, whether or not they’ve previously used Grass switchers. Kayenne also incorporates some of the features from the GV Kayak switcher family, which is what we were using before we upgraded. This made the transition really simple.
All Kayenne frames can be scaled from 1.5 to 4.5 M/Es.We deploy the full 4.5 M/E version in each of our trucks, so we’re using the switcher to its fullest capacity. Kayenne allows us to run multiple M/Es to any output needed (currently we operate with 96 inputs and 48 outputs), giving our clients the ability to feed several different sources simultaneously. We also pair each Kayenne with an integrated K2 Solo broadcast server used for clip storage to provide greater flexibility and an expanded range of clips. The servers replace our EVS spot box, which can now be used as a replay-only system. Our clients favor this as it gives them a dedicated system for replays and helps to free up resources.
CHANGES DONE ON THE FLY
Kayenne’s modular design also played a vital role in our decision. It uses hot-swappable architecture, allowing us to move panels around to suit different configurations—even when we’re on the air. This is a huge advantage in live sports as things happen very quickly and there’s little room for error.
With our varied customer base, we often have to switch between 1080 and 720. Kayenne handles this with ease. We’re considering purchasing the K-Frame to provide full 3G 1080p/50/60 support. This will allow us to serve our clients in new and exciting ways, opening more doors for us in the future.
Len Chase is the president of CSP Mobile Productions. He may be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.