The Olelo master control room
Olelo Community Television is a public/educational/government service carried on six channels of the Oceanic Time Warner Cable system here. In the last several years, we have experienced rapid growth, in part due to the addition of an automation system that fit our needs and gave us the flexibility to expand.
When we made the decision to purchase a new automation system, we knew that we required a system that would be able to scale with us as we added channels and hardware to our studio configuration. Additionally, we wanted to ensure that we chose something that not only fit our operation, but would make it much more efficient.
Our search led us to the VCI Solutions autoXe automation system in 2006, and it proved to the right fit for many reasons.
It was the only system that would be able to control all of our devices, such as our Omneon Video Servers and Aberdeen NAS. The layout of the system was extremely user-friendly and very easy to navigate and learn, which reduced training time once the new system was in place.
Additionally, autoXe's ability to run with workstations that can perform any of the needed tasks, such as playlist control and material prepping at the same time provides us with flexibility and redundancy on a limited number of physical workstations.
EVEN MORE BENEFITS WITH NEW VCI SYSTEM
A few years after we installed our initial VCI Solutions automation, we heard their newest offering, autoXe MC and decided to see it for ourselves firsthand at the NAB Show. I knew immediately, that this new system was our next natural stepping stone. As we had grown to a six-channel operation, the scalability of the autoXe MC system gives us the ability to monitor multiple channels on one screen through its Schedule Director application. The fact that the system can flag us if we overlook something—or if there is a problem—is a far superior way to manage operations.
Given all of the advanced functionality that the new autoXe MC system would afford us—such as a more advanced architectural platform, capability to monitor by exception, and enhanced logging capabilities—I planned and budgeted appropriately to have the new system installed.
I must say that VCI Solutions' willingness to work with us as more of a partner (as opposed to the traditional vendor role) made the entire experience a positive one. Their service, support and training staff are outstanding which made the transition a smooth one. Service and support is actually very important to our operation, as we're in Hawaii and there's a three-hour time difference from the mainland. We have not had one problem in working the VCI Solutions' support team after hours—they are always courteous and there to assist us when needed.
We have been on the new autoXe MC system for just about a year now and are very happy. It is able to do everything we want or need it to do, and then some. It provides total control over our multichannel operation and has enabled us to expand our operations faster than we'd originally planned.
We like working with VCI Solutions as a partner and are anxious to continue to expand our operations and relationship with them into the future.
Kit Kawamata is chief engineer at Olelo Community Television and has been in the broadcast industry for 25 years. He may be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org
For additional information, contact VCI Solutions at 413-272-7200 or visit www.vcisolutions.com