KTWO transitions to HD news; relies on JVC GY-HM700 camcorders

KTWO, the Silverton Broadcasting-owned ABC affiliate serving central Wyoming, transitioned to delivering local news in HD this month with the help of its new JVC GY-HM700 camcorders. The station produces five newscasts every weekday and two on both Saturday and Sunday as well as a weekly sports program.

Moving to an all-HD newscast and a tapeless workflow were two significant steps for the station, which serves the Casper-Riverton market, the No. 197 DMA. According to KTWO chief broadcast engineer Terry Lane, the station doesn’t have the budget of stations in larger markets, so the transition to HD news has been an economic challenge.

This spring, KWTO purchased 10 JVC GY-HM700 camcorders, most of which to be used for ENG work; however, two were designated as studio cameras. “Even adding a frame sync for each, they were a budget-friendly choice for our news studio,” Lane said. Eventually, the station will add a third for roaming studio shots, he added.

KTWO has embraced JVC's tapeless acquisition and the use of nonproprietary flash media. While the station reuses its SDHC cards, the technology is inexpensive enough to allow archiving some cards without taking a serious toll on KTWO’s operation budget, Lane said. The new ENG cameras give the station “all the advantages of a tape-based system and all the advantages of tapeless workflow for our ENG work,” he said.

The JVC camcorders also help in the KTWO edit suite, where news packages are cut using Apple Final Cut Pro. The HM700 records natively in the .MOV file format, so there is no need to ingest or transcode footage. A reporter simply inserts an SDHC card into a card reader and can begin editing within seconds.