Ned Soseman /
Originally featured on BroadcastEngineering.com
Seattle Mariners call up Fujinon
Better lenses produce better images on a new giant display that is 8X larger than what it replaced.
Major League Baseball’s Seattle Mariners debuted a new Panasonic Lighthouse HD LED video display featuring imagery from new HD camera equipment put into service just before the season opener in April.
The new camera equipment includes two Grass Valley LDX 80 Premiere multiformat studio/field cameras paired with two FUJINON XA77x9.5 HD telephoto field lenses. The Seattle Mariners also ordered a FUJINON HA14x4.5 super wide-angle HD ENG/EFP lens for use on a Sony PMW500-HD02 XDCAM camcorder. A second XDCAM camcorder is paired with a FUJINON ZA22x7.6BERD ENG/EFP HD lens acquired last year.
Since the new camera equipment was installed and commissioned in late March 2013, it has been used for game-day entertainment at Safeco Field — the home ballpark for the Seattle Mariners — starting with the 2013 season opener. It has also been used to support and enhance a variety of community events, including a private Microsoft corporate party and a series of high school baseball games held at Safeco.
After the public had a chance to see the new 1080i HD video display and camera equipment at an Open House and media event prior to the start of the 2013 season and during the season opener, the gear was used for a double-header featuring two Seattle high school baseball teams on April 20, 2013. These new resources were also used on May 2, 2013, when Safeco hosted a private party held by Microsoft to honor 750 employees who had reached their 10-year anniversary with the company.
To cover action on the field, the two studio cameras are situated on tripods on the club level behind home plate. Video signals are carried over 1000ft via triax cable to the control room, also on the club level, where they’re switched with a Ross Vision production switcher. The two camcorders are shoulder-mounted, and VistaLink HD RF wireless transmission systems enable the operators to freely rove the stands for crowd shots. The video for the HD screen is also displayed on TVs throughout the concourse and suites.