Canare Cables Shine at FamilyNet

The interior of FamilyNet's new 26 foot mobile video production vehicle. Canare cables were used throughout the project.
FamilyNet is dedicated to providing responsible, relevant, and entertaining viewing choices for today's diverse family. Their programming is available in over 15 million households nationwide.

When FamilyNet decided to relocate facilities from Fort Worth to Atlanta, they needed to build a new HD facility, fully integrate two production trucks, incorporate existing equipment and, most important, not lose any air time during the transition. To make this happen, they brought in our company.


Our firm, Workhorse SI, designed and integrated a system for FamilyNet that was projected to meet the network's requirements for the next 10 years, and was engineered with an infrastructure designed to grow with the company and its expanding needs. We completely overhauled the existing facility and simultaneously built the production trucks off-site, allowing their programming to remain on-air without interruption.

As part of the process, Workhorse SI met with FamilyNet to determine their needs, and then delivered conceptual design solutions from facility layout and space planning to detailed four-color rack elevations. To stay cost-effective, approximately 30 percent of the existing equipment was incorporated into the design. Canare cables were selected as part of that design and were installed throughout the facility and trucks. The project required more than 30 miles of various Canare cables. Workhorse has used Canare cables in all of its installations and we have installations going back more than 10 years constructed with Canare and we've never had a problem.

We also used Canare connectors for this project, with more than 4,000 standard 75 ohm and mini BNC connectors being installed. We've have a very good track record with Canare connectors. We know from experience that when we open the box, they are done right.


Another factor in our selection of Canare cables in the FamilyNet and all of our projects is the wide range of color jackets available from Canare. We use color-coded cables throughout our installations for designating various signal types and Canare has a rainbow of jacket colors available to facilitate this type of color coding.

In the FamilyNet project, we were literally working with just about every type of signal you might find in a broadcast installation—HD/SD, composite video, AES audio, timecode, tri-level reference, signals and some analog audio. In fact the Evertz router selected for the job even included an RS-422 level for moving control signals back and forth. You can't have too many colors available to help organize such a diversity of signal types in your plant.

A unique feature of the integration project is the transparent connectivity of the 20- and 26-foot mobile production units with the house video system. If FamilyNet needs more cameras or any of the nine HDCAM tape machines for larger productions, they power up the vehicles and all the trucks' resources appear on the facility's main router.

As with most mobile installations, there's always concern about allowable payload and Canare's new VDM250 HD video cable helped us keep the weight down to a minimum. This cable was used in both of FamilyNet's video production trucks. Workhorse SI has found that it delivers a high quality HD signal with a minimum of weight and bulk.

All in all, both Workhorse SI and FamilyNet are pleased with the performance of the Canare cables used in the project.

Karl Horstmann is president of Workhorse SI. He may be contacted

For additional information, contact Canare at 973-837-0070 or