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NEP debuts two new HD trucks, with more coming

The need for live outdoor production trucks continues to grow as more and more sports and entertainment events are televised and distributed across multiple platforms. NEP Broadcasting, with one of the country’s largest fleets (47 trucks), recently added two new HD trucks to its fleet, with more are coming later this year. The company’s new ND5 is designed for the sports and light entertainment markets, while its Arizona truck is specifically for the entertainment industry.

“Both Arizona and ND5 build on our 30 years of experience designing mobile television production facilities,” said George Hoover, Chief Technology Officer at NEP Broadcasting. “They each utilize innovative design features pioneered by NEP, including a new lightweight power system in ND5 and full 16 channel embedded audio support in Arizona.”

The ND5 made its debut on Feb. 19 on NBC’s Hockey Day in America. Arizona’s debut assignment was at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences’ Oscar telecast on Feb 26. In late February, NEP is planning to add a new ND6 truck to its Supershooters fleet.

Next year, NEP plans to introduce a new entertainment truck—the Entourage—to its Sweetwater fleet and to add an HD truck to company’s fleet in the United Kingdom.

The ND5 is a single mobile unit designed for NEP’s Supershooters fleet. It has a large, three-tier control room and is equipped with a Grass Valley Kalypso HD switcher, Sony HDC1400 HD cameras, Canon HD lenses, an Calrec Artemis Beam audio console with MADI control, Hydra networking and Evertz virtual monitor walls.

At NAB Pesa said it would introduce a new router identical to the one installed on ND5. It’s designed to address the expanding audio capability of large mobile units, according to Keith Bond, vice president of product management for Pesa. The new router has 24 ports for I/Os and three fiber links, which means that a single DXC engine can handle 1536 x 1536.

“When you connect five systems together, you can do a total of 7,680 by 7,680 I/Os,” Bond said. “We see this as ideal for mobile trucks which now have 16 levels of audio and are doing surround in five to eight channels and have several second language channels.”

Arizona is the latest truck in NEP’s Denali fleet and was designed specifically for the entertainment industry—particularly multi-camera reality and light entertainment productions. The single truck unit has a two-tier control room and an audio room with seating for three. Equipment includes a Grass Valley Kalypso switcher, Sony cameras, a Calrec Alpha audio console with MADI and Hydra, wiring for 20 tape machines and two EVS servers and virtual monitor walls.