OLYMPIA, WASH.—TVW, the Washington Public Affairs Network, covers the Washington State legislature from its Captiol Campus, as well as commission and agency meetings, public policy events, and more. Fifteen rooms in the Capitol Campus have at least three cameras, including the House and Senate floors, and we can provide simultaneous live coverage of them all on the web.
OUT WITH THE OLD
Last fall, we converted our facility to HDSDI. Though we previously upgraded to SDI, we were still using much of the equipment from our launch in 1995. Everything we owned had become obsolete. While no cable system in the state provided TVW with an HD channel (footage is letterboxed), we offer HD footage is online and through three feeds TVW delivers to the Capitol Campus.
We overhauled our three existing control rooms and master control, added a fourth control room and replaced two mobile production units.
Gerchak uses one of the six Broadcast Pix switchers installed during TVW’s recent rebuild. We chose the Broadcast Pix Mica 1000 integrated production switcher for our three existing control rooms. These rooms have the same, effective control scheme. We utilize two-man crews operating identical equipment in each room built around the Mica switcher. The Micas were a great value because they control external devices and have a number of built-in tools, including CG, clip stores, and a multiview. That saved us from having to source, purchase, and integrate additional equipment.
We installed a Broadcast Pix Granite in our new control room, which is dedicated to programs we produce in our own studio, but can be used for legislative coverage if needed. The new Granite will be a key part of our upcoming election coverage.
We also produce original programming, including a daily “Legislative Review” program, “Capitol Headlines” news briefs, and weekly series “Inside Olympia” and “The Impact.” Broadcast Pix’s ClearKey advanced chromakey technology for virtual sets greatly enhances some of these productions.
For meeting coverage, video from all 49 cameras on location is transmitted via fiber to TVW’s central equipment room, then “salvo”-routed to one of four control rooms (the routing system is controlled by Telemetrics software). When a chamber is recalled, all resources associated with that chamber—including video, audio, graphics, control, and metadata—are routed to the Broadcast Pix switcher in a specific control room.
Our mobile units cover meetings and events away from the Capitol Campus. Manned by two-person crews, each is anchored by a Mica 500, which controls the unit’s Panasonic AW-HE130 PTZ cameras. The Mica’s integrated CG has helped streamline our field productions. Graphics are now inserted live during production. That alone saves a lot of man hours.
Marc Gerchak is director of engineering for TVW. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information, please visit www.broadcastpix.comor call 978-600-1100.