TALLAHASSEE, Fla.—Launching a new network is difficult enough, but almost immediately having to adapt to a global pandemic raises those challenges to a new level. That was the situation that faced Black News Channel, which debuted in February of this year.
The pandemic raised the importance of communication between BNC staff as they transitioned to remote production. Thankfully, BNC Chief Audio Engineer Darnell Bryant said that communication was a top priority from the beginning when BNC was building its facility, for which it relied on Clear-Com and its technology, which proved equally effective as things went remote.
For its initial setup, BNC equipped its facility with Clear-Com’s Eclipse Matrix platform with analog four-wire, Dante, MADI and E-IPA enabling AES 67, its V-Series intercom panels, FreeSpeak II wireless beltpacks and LQ with SIP telephone.
Clear-Com also helped train BNC staff on the equipment, many of whom were new to the industry. This gave Clear-Com Applications Engineer Jonathan Sorenson the opportunity to make the learning curve easier for BNC.
The staffers took the training in stride and worked with Sorenson to improve their setup by adding elements like external phone lines with IFB and different kinds of Dante and MADI program input and routing. “It’s all just learn by doing, and both companies are able to take advantage of our relationship together to do that,” Sorenson said.
When the pandemic struck, the relationship established with BNC and Clear-Com helped make the transition as smooth as possible.
“I was able to go to them and say, ‘Hey, this is what other people are doing, you have all the tools so let’s change things around and do it,’” said Sorenson. “They were very adaptive in their workflow to be able to allow for that.”
Part of that adaptive process is the use of Agent IC, which BNC talent use to communicate remotely by providing their traditional intercom hard panel and making it accessible through an application at home.
“This is my first time working with Clear-Com and their products, and I am beyond amazed by their customer service, the knowledge of equipment and everything else they bring to the table. Just an overall wonderful experience,” said Bryant.
BNC expects to continue its relationship with Clear-Com as the network expands.
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