Category New studio technology
— station Submitted by Professional
Communications Systems (PCS) Design teamProfessional
Systems (PCS): Bill Blush, VP, sales; Charles
Ross, acct. exec.; Glenn Thomason, dir. of eng.;
Rich Merriam, design eng., proj. mgr.; Troy Pazos, installation mgr.
WINK-TV: Glen Argirion, eng.; Keith Stuhlmann,
dir. of eng. Technology at work Dolby 5.1 sound system
Florical JB 2105 MC
M2100 MC switcher
8964 DEC A/D and 8964
ENC D/A conversion
Concerto routing sys.
Ikegami HTM2005R HD/
Miranda Kaleido virtual
Sony PVM1415/1 SD
reference sync sys.
WFM700 HD scope
WINK-TV rebuilds in hurricane alley, adding new digital technology
Moving, building, upgrading, expanding and converting a major station to HD is usually enough of a challenge for an engineering staff and integrator. CBS-affi liate WINK-TV, which serves the Fort Meyers/ Naples market in southwest Florida, and Professional Communications Systems (PCS) had the bar raised a few notches by nature, in the form of hurricanes Charlie and Wilma.
Emergency service needs postponed the reconstruction of the existing facility. The integration team had to wait out for both the storm and construction crews to become available. Builders first had to repair the devastating destruction to the most vital facilities in the surrounding areas.
Thanks to a large in-house power generator, WINK remained on-air without interruption during the week of widespread outages. That power enabled the complex to broadcast critical information to area residents and the governmental authorities’ security and rescue forces during Hurricane Charlie.
After construction resumed, the station focused on its goal — to keep WINK at the technological forefront. The digital upgrade plan called for equipment and systems to enable simultaneous broadcasting in SD and HD, both on-air and to cable, and the ability to accommodate another SD channel in the future.
The new capabilities, featuring Grass Valley master control, conversion and routing, were rigorously tested shortly after completion, when the area was struck by Hurricane Wilma. Adversity provided the ultimate comparison of old vs. new. Engineers saw a vast improvement in technical performance, and again, WINK remained on-air without interruption, providing news, weather and emergency information.
The upgrade has enabled the station to record both SD and HD feeds from CBS. HD is provided over the air and is fed, via fiber-optic cable with backup, to the cable systems. Seventy percent of prime-time HD is broadcast in Dolby 5.1.
When not carrying HD programming, WINK upconverts 480-line video scans to 1080 lines to allow smooth transition between HD and non-HD programming. The HD/SD simulcasting is interrupted during opportunities to distribute original HD programming from CBS, as is done during the NCAA basketball tournament.
Automation has been a key factor in the success of the upgrade and the transition to a digital workflow. In addition to increased capacity, the station no longer has to deal with cumbersome workarounds. Routing sources are more efficient, and workfl ow is improved.
The rebuild allows WINK to be at the forefront of programming and technology, and to provide better, faster news.