MRC Provides Extensive Systems Solution for FOX KTCB-TV's Live Coverage of Austin Marathon

April 5, 2007
Microwave Radio Communications (MRC) announced that it provided an extensive microwave systems solution to FOX affiliate KTBC in Austin, Texas, for their live coverage of the 16th annual AT&T Austin Marathon. MRC's Link wireless cameraback radio fed signals to the KTBC helicopter, which worked as a repeater and downlinked the video to a central receive site on Mt. Larson. MRC portable STRATA radios were used to establish two 13 GHz backhauls: One backhaul transmitted audio and video between the studio and the AT&T Tent monitoring the broadcast and a third was used to contribute additional video and audio content covering this event.

"We went to MRC because we were covering a 26 mile road race, and we had to find a way to do this transmission wireless without running any fiber or cable," said Danny Baker, general manager, KTBC-TV. "MRC had the technology that allowed us to strap a little transmitter onto a helicopter and be able to relay the signal from the wireless camera to the helicopter and then from the helicopter to the station for broadcast and for webcasting. We were able to achieve two paths; two paths with the one system. The system worked flawlessly, for the better part of 6 hours."

MRC transmitters and receivers were configured for both analog and digital coverage to provide maximum flexibility. COFDM digital transmission was used for the contribution portion of this event and analog backhaul transmission was used in distributing event coverage. The 13 GHz duplex backhauls established the first streaming of Marathon coverage and used video and audio from the lead truck and helicopter from the start and finish lines.

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