Business highlights from broadcast and production

Capitol Broadcasting Company station WRAL-TV in Raleigh, NC, recently purchased DVCPRO HD equipment from Panasonic to convert its field news operations to high definition. WRAL broadcast the world's first all-HDTV newscast at 5 p.m. on Oct. 13. The newscast originated live from the North Carolina State Fair, with news stories acquired and played back in DVCPRO HD format. In addition, the newscast previewed WRAL's new 24,000 square-foot all-digital news facility and to demonstrate the benefits of high-definition television.

WRAL will begin shooting, recording and editing its daily newscasts in high definition in January 2001.

Panasonic chose Accom's Dveous digital video effects systems to be used to create world feeds and daily summaries for the Sydney Olympic Broadcast Organization (SOBO). In addition, Accom's Affinity and StrataSphere nonlinear editing systems were used to produce 28 five-minute shows about Australia, a 15-minute opening show called "Welcome to Australia, Sydney and the 2000 Olympic Games," and the closing montage piece for the Games.

Other countries using the Dveous for their coverage were Canada (CBC), Spain (TVE) and Mexico (Televisa). Korea used a two-channel Dveous for coverage of the Games and, Sweden and Norway used three Abekas 8150 switchers.

NBC also utilized DVE systems and DDRs from Accom, as well as a WSD 2Xtreme, to create a unique look for its Olympic broadcasts. The Dveous systems were installed in five control rooms at the NBC compound and in two remote trucks.

KUHT/Houston and WXVT-TV have purchased automation systems from Crispin. KUHT/Houston installed Crispin's new System 2000 to automate its new digital facility, the LeRoy and Lucile Melcher Center for Public Broadcasting.

WXVT-TV is using the RapidPlayX to control a Profile video server for commercial playback.

IMMAD ECVS announced its intent to purchase Synergistic Technologies, a Pittsburg-based systems integration company. STI will be merged into IMMAD ECVS' U.S. operations under the management of IMMAD ECVS president and C.O.O. Rich Bisignano.

Leitch was selected by Panasonic to provide close to $6 million worth for the 2000 Olympic Games, including more than a dozen of its new Integrator routing systems. Other equipment used at the Games included audio distribution amplifiers, multiformat frame synchronizers, and video and audio converters.

Canadian broadcast distributor Bell ExpressVu recently purchased a Leitch server and news package for its Vu! pay-per-view service.

A number of broadcasters have purchased the Kalypso Video Production Center from Grass Valley Group, including WGBH in Boston, Euromedia in France, Eurohits in the Netherlands and the BBC. The systems will be used to create content for U.S. public broadcasting stations, upgrade regional news studios, produce music videos, and in a mobile unit for production of the French Open.

Grass Valley Group's ContentShare Platform has also been incorporated as a fundamental component of Editware's new DPE-500 Series editing system.

iNEWS and Media Exchange International have announced a strategic partnership to offer broadcasters the opportunity to distribute media assets to vertical markets online via Virtual Private Networks (VPN).

Media assets and accompanying metadata will be managed and assembled by the iNEWS NRCS, while MEI administers and facilitates the broadband VPNs. The technology resulting from the partnership will enable broadcasters to target branded media assets to various niche markets.

iNEWS has also formed a partnership with Vertigo Multimedia to integrate Vertigo's Producer ON AIR and Producer Interactive systems into the iNEWS NRCS platform to allow broadcasters to immediately integrate new media input, such as viewer feedback, into live productions.

iNEWS also announced a phased project to combine their Media Browse 2000 with the Media360 media asset management system from Informix.

Omneon Video Networks and UK-based Pharos Communications have formed an application partnership utilizing Omneon's Video Area Network in conjunction with Pharos' process control systems.

Avid and OmniBus Systems announced a joint development project to provide tighter integration between their systems. Avid's shared storage system, Avid Unity, will be utilized to allow the companies' asset management and playout systems and content creation tools to share information more easily.

OmniBus will also work with Pixel Power to develop a character generator network interface enabling Pixel Power's Collage, Graphite and Clarity ranges to be available within the OmniBus automation environment.

EMC Corp. has acquired Avalon Consulting Group, a Denver-based supplier of rich media management software for the television broadcast industry, to operate as a unit of EMC's Media Solutions Group.

Mindport MCT and SGI have formed an alliance to integrate Mindport's content streaming software with SGI's video servers for broadcast and broadband applications to provide broadband network customers with a comprehensive broadband streaming solution.

Sky News recently ordered five Pinnacle Systems FXDeko CGs with Rocket for Deko and ClipDeko. Four of the units will be utilized in the main Sky newsroom in London, and one will be installed at their Westminster Studios.

Thomson Tubes Electroniques has acquired Siemens' Berlin-based power grid tube operations, enabling them to offer a wider choice of broadcast transmission tubes. Siemens' operations will be transferred to TTE's Thonon plant in 2001.

FAST Multimedia and Hewlett Packard have announced an agreement to ship FAST's native DV editing system, purple., with Hewlett Packard's Kayak XM 600 as a turnkey system.

Cisco Systems has appointed Tandberg Television as an official reseller and systems integrator for Cisco's networking products to broadcasters. The agreement will deploy Cisco's universal broadband routers, interactive network adapters, DVB cable access routers and remultiplexing systems with Tandberg's evolution 5000 MPEG compression, broadcast management solutions, and modulation and multiplexing systems.

Tandberg Television has integrated its evolution 5000 multiplexers with Logic Innovations' 1U IP Encapsulator to provide opportunistic data solutions using SMPTE 325 in 20-, 30-, 70- and 100Mb/s versions. The integration will allow broadcasters to reclaim unused bandwidth in their digital broadcast streams.

Fox affiliate KPDX-TV is utilizing Panasonic DVCPRO digital component video equipment in the expansion of its news coverage and creation of its own newsroom. Equipment purchased for the station includes nine camcorders, five laptop editing systems and seven studio editing VTRs.

PBS station Thirteen/WNET New York and Peter Fish jointly purchased four Libra Series digital audio consoles from AMS Neve. Two of the consoles will be installed in Thirteen/WNET's two new audio post rooms, to be used for live mixing and post production applications. They will also provide for some of the audio needs of Fish's new audio post production facility. Fish will employ the other two consoles in his new facility.

Paris-based Plus XXX Studios has also selected AMS Neve equipment. The facility was the first to purchase AMS Neve's 88R analog console.

San Francisco station KTVU-TV selected Grass Valley Group's digital newsroom solution including Vibrint FeedClip, Vibrint NewsEdit and the Profile XP Media Platform. KTVU will use the system to replace the tape-based news systems currently in use.

Two stations, KTTC-TV in Rochester, MN, and WGEM-TV in Quincy, IL, recently purchased DTV transmitting and encoding equipment from Harris Corp. KTTC-TV will use a Harris Sigma CD high-power UHF DTV transmitter and a FlexiCoder MPEG-2 encoding system to offer digital service. WGEM-TV also purchased a FlexiCoder encoding system.

Signet Sound Studios installed 1034B active monitors from Genelec in Studio A. The monitors fill the L-C-R positions in the studio.

Kentucky Educational Television selected Hitachi's multi-level digital FM transmission system for the digital upgrade of its microwave network.

Todd-AO Scoring, a division of Todd-AO Studios, recently purchased a Solid State Logic SL 9000 J Series SuperAnalogue console to upgrade its scoring stage. The facility used the 96-input console to record the music soundtrack for the upcoming feature, The Grinch.

With the growing commitment to 5.1 audio among broadcasters, Dolby Laboratories' Dolby E audio coding technology is increasingly being used to facilitate multichannel programming distribution. Since September of 1999, facilities including Broadway Video, Pacific Ocean Post Sound, Warner Bros. Video Operations, IVC and the sound department for Walt Disney Pictures have installed Dolby's DP571 and DP572 Dolby E codecs.

Miranda has formed a new Operations Group encompassing Miranda's marketing communications, sales support, inventory and technical/customer support activities. The new group will develop an e-commerce strategy as part of an effort to streamline the process of bringing products to market. Robert Young will serve as vice president of operations for the new organization.

The Weather Channel recently purchased a Radamec robotic control camera system consisting of two RP2A robotic pedestals with HK 435 pan/tilt heads, a PCU computer and two touch-screen operational panels.

Philips Broadcast, an associate company of Philips Digital Networks, supplied six LDK 23HS cameras to Fox Sports Network for electronic field production on major sports events throughout the United States.

PEOPLE Omneon has added Timothy Slate as vice president of marketing and Jim Leighton as director of product marketing.

The following people were appointed to the speaker and microphone division of Telex's Pro Audio Group: Mike O'Neill, as vice president and general manager for speakers worldwide and for amplifiers in the U.S.; Joel Johnson, as general manager for wired and wireless mics worldwide; and Ralph Strader, as vice president and general manager for intercoms worldwide. Tom Hansen has been promoted to vice president of sales for installed sound, and Kent Rahn has been hired as director of marketing communications.

Andy Ioannou has been named CEO of North American operations for OmniBus.

Vega recently announced four sales and marketing staff appointments. Douglas Weinstein is joining the company as sales and marketing manager. Kimberly Ham has been promoted to sales administration manager. Darshon Ware was appointed as order administrator. Marco Garcia has joined Vega as technical sales specialist.

Pixel Power appointed Bruce Levine to the position of vice president of sales.

Marty Matsuhashi has returned to the post of president of Hitachi after a two-year stint as General Manager of Overseas Sales.

Leitch recently appointed John Edwards director of product development. Kent Ewing was appointed director of operations.

Roi Agneta has been appointed chief operating officer of Vertigo Multimedia.

Colin Pringle has been appointed group marketing director for Solid State Logic.

Calrec Audio has appointed Jim Wilmer as regional sales manager for North America.

Roderick Snell, president and founder of Snell & Wilcox, was recently honored by the British Kinematograph Sound and Television Society (BKSTS) with the President's Award. Snell received the award for his achievements in improving worldwide video standards for more than 25 years.

Dark Angel created with Clarity HD Rainmaker Digital Imaging is using Pixel Power's Clarity HD to create titling for Fox's new series, Dark Angel. The program, created by director James Cameron, debuted Oct. 3 at 9:00EDT/8:00CDT and is being simulcast in standard definition and high definition.

Affinity edits Summer X-Games ESPN used the Affinity nonlinear editor from Accom in its coverage of this year's Summer X-Games in San Francisco. The system has been used for the past several X-Games, and this year was used to create bumps, teases and digitized super bumps.

Five Dveous DVE systems and two Abekas 8150 switchers were also used in ESPN's coverage.

NBC4 wins Emmy with Quantel NBC4 in Washington, D.C., won an Emmy for a compilation of promotions including a 30-second spot for the Washington Redskins' pre-season and the Redskins Report, a weekly highlights show airing during the football season. The award-winning promotions were created using Quantel's Editbox and Paintbox FAT.

Animations were produced and sampled on the Paintbox FAT and completed comps were edited on the Editbox nearly at the same time.