New studio technology
Communications Engineering Inc.
CEI: Raef Alkhayat, proj. mgr., dir. of eng.
Newseum: Bud O’Connor, dir. of eng.
Technology at work
Avid DNA HD edit suites
Barco OverView displays
Canon Digi Super HDTV lenses
Christie DW3K DLP projectors
Chyron Hyper X CGs
Nugget video players
Elo TouchSystems touch screens
Euphonix MaxAir mixers
Evertz MVP display processors
Front Porch DIVArchive
Ikegami HDL-40C HDTV cameras
Sony SRW-5500 HDCAM VTRs
Tektronix WFM700A multiformat monitors
Thomson Grass Valley
K2 HD servers
Kalypso HD switchers
LDK6000 HD cameras
Vista Systems Spyder video processors
Wohler MON2-3W/HR monitors
Newseum in Washington, D.C., features 500 years of news history
The Newseum in Washington, D.C., is one of the most technologically advanced museums in the world, featuring 250,000sq-ft of hands-on exhibits, theaters and studios. The new facility combines 500 years of news history with the latest in newsgathering capabilities.
The task of designing, integrating and installing the wide array of broadcasting and audiovisual equipment was handled by Communications Engineering Inc. (CEI). One of the key challenges for this project was the need to install the systems while the 643,000sq-ft, seven-story building was under construction.
The master control room was challenging because it not only acts as the control center for managing all aspects of the facility’s systems, but also it is a primary attraction for visitors. The room needed to be functional as well as aesthetically suitable for the museum.
The room features 18 equipment racks and nine 50in Barco rear-projection cubes controlled by an Evertz MVP multi-image display processor. From here, operators can control the video and audio that is displayed throughout the facility, including the content on more than 160 touch screens in interactive kiosks. CEI supplied hundreds of PCs and worked with Evertz to build a special bidirectional fiber-optic device that could handle 1920 x 1200 resolution, RS-232, USB and audio for managing the kiosks.
The master control room, with three large consoles, also handles broadcasts coming into the building and will be the center for the facility’s IT systems. Four robotic cameras placed inside and outside are operated from the master control room as well.
A main focal point is a 22ft x 40ft Barco high-res modular LED display. It is mounted on a lift that can be raised or lowered 30ft depending on the type of event taking place. Images displayed on the screen are played out from the master control room.
CEI also built two identical HD production control rooms with adjoining audio control rooms for two broadcast studios. The TV studio is expected to be used for public affairs and news programs by major TV networks.
A second, smaller studio features a backdrop of the U.S. Capitol. Eight Thomson Grass Valley HD cameras can be used in any combination in the studios. SMPTE fiber was installed in the studios to provide flexibility for a variety of productions and cameras.
CEI also built four Avid HD edit rooms plus a multipurpose room that serves as an Avid suite, screening room and audio post-production room. A central equipment room contains servers for the 12 SD and 36 HD channels of content being played back throughout the facility. An ingest room enables the intake of content in a variety of formats.