KHQ-DT selects Broadcast Pix system for weather updates

KHQ-DT, the NBC affiliate in Spokane, WA, is using a Slate 2100 live television production system from Broadcast Pix for production of the station’s “Weather Plus Updates,” which are broadcast daily on its DTV channel 6-2 (carried locally by Comcast Cablevision and available from the station's Web site at The Slate 2100, installed in late 2006, now serves as the centerpiece for a new production control room, freeing up its main control room for other programming while enabling it to quickly create and broadcast late-breaking weather reports.

The two or four-minute pre-recorded segments (updated seven times a day) are also fed to two other central Washington stations owned by KHQ — KNDO-DT in Yakima and KNDU-DT in Kennewick — for broadcast on their DTV secondary channels and Web sites. The Slate 2100 system at KHQ-DT is operated by a single person, yet has the look and feel of a fully staffed production.

The Broadcast Pix Slate 2100 system integrates a production switcher, production control panel, Inscriber CG, transitional effects, chromakeyer, clip store and multiview monitoring, among other functions, in a single workstation-based system.

KHQ has supplemented the 2100 system with two large Sony flat-screen color monitors for program and preview displays, as well as a small Tascam audio board, MP3 player for music beds and an Avid Airspeed playout server for bringing video roll-ins into the system. The operator can also route two or more sources from anywhere in the station, such as a live video shot from a field camera.

The system can be operated with a production switcher-style control panel or by using a keyboard and mouse interface. In addition to the Slate 2100 system’s integrated design, KHQ found the system’s compact footprint ideal for its former newsroom edit suite. The studio, which is equipped with several Panasonic robotic cameras, has a green screen chromakey wall for keying weather graphics generated by a WSI weather graphics presentation system.

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