BSkyB equips West London facility with Grass Valley cameras and switchers

BSkyB (Sky) has purchased a number of HD production tools from Grass Valley for its new Harlequin 1 broadcast facility in West London. The contract includes 20 LDK 8000 Elite WorldCam multiformat HD cameras and five Kayenne video production switchers. Both products are ready for future demanding technical requirements, including stereoscopic 3-D productions and 3Gb/s 1080p.

Sky’s Harlequin 1 broadcast facility will provide studios, technical support and operational space for the company’s Broadcast Operations, Sky Sports and Broadcast Services divisions. Constructed on the campus of Sky’s headquarters in Osterley, the building provides Sky with the opportunity to upgrade its entire technical infrastructure while reducing its environmental footprint.

Troy Smith, director of broadcast services for BskyB, said the goal was to reduce its environmental footprint “with efficient technologies that significantly reduce the overall power consumption of the technical facilities, while still delivering the best picture and sound quality possible to our viewers,” he said.

When fully completed, Harlequin 1 will contain multiple HD production studios for a range of programming including sports, light entertainment, music and game shows. Supporting these studios will be four audio mastering suites fully equipped to provide flexible, 5.1-capable, multiplatform content production services, and 45 craft edit suites.

For content delivery, Harlequin 1 will serve as a centralized platform for the control and monitoring of program output — including encryption, compression and playout.