System integrator A. F. Associates (AFA), part of Ascent Media’s Systems & Technology Services (S&TS), has completed the design and equipment build for a start-up high-definition cable network and satellite facility in San Diego, CA, called WealthTV. The channel launched June 1.
Robert Herring, Sr., founder, CEO and president of Herring Broadcasting, which owns Wealth TV, said he envisions the new channel as a visually stunning source of entertainment for those that enjoy luxury, as well as those who aspire to a lavish lifestyle.
WealthTV uplinks twin signals to PanAmSat Galaxy 13, an HD transponder for national cable networks. Ascent Media S&TS headed up the satellite uplink and encoding elements of the project by providing a turnkey system that included satellite dish installation. The primary signal is encoded in the 1080i HD format, although WealthTV is also broadcasting a downconverted standard-definition digital signal to reach the maximum number of subscribers.
The 40,000 sq. ft. facility uses the latest HD technology from Sony Electronics. AFA designed and installed the all-digital HD system that features a Sony MVS 8000 production switcher, router and monitoring system. Dolby surround sound processing is featured with a Sony DMXR100 audio mixer. Three Sony HDC 930 cameras with Vinten tripods and pan/tilt heads are installed in a 47x48 foot studio.
Harris Automation controls master control with Pinnacle Systems video servers. Dolby 5.1 encoders feed the audio along with the video to Motorola encoding equipment for uplink. Among Wealth TV’s multiple post suites is a discreet logic smoke system, while Apple Final Cut Pro running on Apple G5 computers were also used to finish projects in HD.
The 24-hour cable television channel initially launched to approximately 750,000 subscribers with a goal to be received in 80 million homes around the globe via cable and satellite service providers.
The Wealth TV project was the first to use the combined resources of AFA and its newly acquired west coast location (former Sony Systems Integration). April Calou, senior project manager for AFA West, led the team that completed the project within five months.