EuroNews replaces tape-based system

The channel upgraded its aging tape-based workflow with a digital news production infrastructure
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replaces tape-based system

EuroNews, a multilingual news channel covering world news from a European perspective, has 12 satellite feeds taking down world news programming all day, every day and broadcasts simultaneously in English, French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish. With an aging tape-based workflow and a library of over 38,000 tapes from 12 years of broadcast, EuroNews selected SGI to design and integrate a complete digital IT solution based on SGI media server for broadcast and SGI InfiniteStorage NAS2000 systems for its new digital ingest and news production facilities in Lyon, France. The new ingest and news production digital infrastructure is designed to replace the tape-based system and eliminate the use of tape storage, which required a large amount of tape-manipulation and tape-regeneration efforts. EuroNews required fast and immediate sharing of content while ingesting for nonlinear editing workstations. In the new digital workflow – first used for coverage of the Athens Olympic Games in August 2004 – one SGI media server for broadcast ingests the 12 satellite feeds or taped footage. Ingested content is simultaneously transferred to the SGI InfiniteStorage NAS2000, consisting of SGI TP9300 and TP9300S storage systems. The storage systems offer a high-bandwidth gateway to a multiple drive datatape StorageTek L700e library controlled by SGI InfiniteStorage data migration facility (DMF), data lifecycle-management software that manages and stores more than 40TB of content.

As the system streams content onto the central storage, it saves substantial time because editing can immediately commence on the NAS2000, using six Pinnacle Systems Liquid chrome nonlinear editors. As ingest occurs, program feeds – especially longer items – can be indexed or de-rushed. For example, an hour-long news feed can be viewed in high resolution (to ascertain picture quality) and several minutes of clips selected for conservation. The clips are then sent to the Octopus transcoder, which transcodes the high-bit-rate version to low-resolution.

From the NAS 2000, journalists are able to browse everything inside the central storage using 120 Octopus NRCS workstations and the Octopus database to select their clips and edit their stories. Aveco Astra from the Czech Republic, integrated with the Octopus newsroom, handles automation for the ingest channels. Journalists then write voice-over scripts to accompany the selected clips for the news stories. Seven journalists for each of the seven languages then record audio for the news story in small studios equipped with MixNews, a system created by EuroNews. MixNews stores all the different language audio.

As MixNews plays the audio out to two video servers, the second SGI media server for broadcast sends the edited video to the same servers, which record both video and audio as the complete news story, in seven language versions, plays to air. Harris handles automation for playout.

Design Team
Claude Bruyas, head of I.T. and project mgr.
Laurent De Rodez, head of post-production
Alan Mercer, resources dir.
Enrico Moresi, head of ingest and transmission

Yannick Agaesse, project mgr.
Philippe Churlet, broadcast consultant
Manuel Ferreira, account mgr.
Frédéric Guiot, solution architect
Lionel Obry, storage consultant
Equipment List
SGI: Media servers for broadcast InfiniteStorage (NAS 2000 server, DMF, TP9300, TP9300S)
Aveco Astra automation
Pinnacle Liquid chrome NLEs
Octopus newsroom system
EuroNews MixNews
StorageTek L700e library
Harris automation
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