JACKSONVILLE, FLA.—WJXT, the dominant news station in this market for more than a half-century, went HD with our local news in February 2009. We are an independent Post-Newsweek station and our news department enjoys autonomy over all creative and technical aspects of its on-air news reports. The department produces 8.5 hours of live news on weekdays, seven on weekends and several sports and newsmagazine-style programs.
SERVERS DRIVE THE NEWSFLOW
Joe Drumm, WJXT special projects photographer, uses the station's Harris Nexio-based Velocity editing system to prepare a story.
Delivering a high-quality live news product in a competitive media market requires highly skilled talent and an intuitive and reliable file-based newsroom workflow. WJXT has long based its news operation on the Harris Nexio server, and recently upgraded to the Nexio AMP range of shared storage servers.
Our current configuration underscores the department's trust in the Harris NewsForce newsroom solution, as we have four dual-channel Nexio AMP NX3602 servers providing shared access to more than 1,200 hours of HD-quality media storage via eight input/output channels. This system is dedicated to the production and playout of news. We also have six additional Nexio AMP servers with 12 input/output channels for playout of program content, including syndicated shows and commercials, and for ingesting more than 700 satellite feeds each month. The entire news team can access and manipulate digital media feeds and assets as they are ingested into the newsroom server.
Although WJXT is largely a "Harris house," we give considerable thought to every equipment purchase and consider all options. Harris won our newsroom upgrade business for several reasons, including exceptional price performance over competing newsroom solutions, proven reliability, and seamless interface with our third-party, MOS-enabled gear. Most importantly, Harris has always provided an extremely positive sales experience and highly responsive technical support, which is absolutely crucial for delivering live news programming.
THE BEST KIND OF SWITCHOVER
The best illustration of the Harris product and service reliability came this past February as we transitioned from an older Harris nonlinear editing system to its next-generation Velocity editor. This transition was especially tricky as the new system had to be compatible with the Ignite production automation system to successfully play out news stories in the Nexio AMP rundown.
The switchover was executed flawlessly with the help of Harris. Actually, it was the smoothest technology transition I've ever witnessed.
The upgrade to Nexio AMP and Velocity eliminated all of our remaining tape decks, yielding a noticeable savings in ongoing maintenance costs. The station is in the process of ingesting tape-based legacy footage into Velocity's media asset management tools. Velocity's sophisticated metadata tools enable digital assets to be easily located, accessed, and manipulated by everyone on the team, from field crews to editors and producers.
The ability to quickly grab relevant, older news footage enhances the depth and value of our reporting. Meanwhile, the Harris digital, file-based workflow helps us get breaking news to air better and faster. These benefits help WJXT to remain the news leader in this market.
James Lowery is chief engineer at WJXT television. He may be contacted at email@example.com.
For additional information, contact Harris North America at 800-231-9673 or www.broadcast.harris.com.