Live broadcast of Berlin’s 12th IAAF World Championships leverages signal conversion gear from Blackmagic Design

During the 12th IAAF World Championships in Athletics Berlin 2009, as Jamaican athlete Usain Bolt broke the 100m world record, live feeds of the race were being distributed instantaneously thanks to Blackmagic Design signal conversion technology.

Several miles of broadcast cabling, 120 cameras, 40 Blackmagic Design Optical Fiber Mini Converters and Blackmagic Design’s Studio Videohub were among equipment used last month to streamline the production of content captured during the live HD broadcast of the championships to 203 countries.

German media service provider Incast supplied live video feeds to 3500 journalists in the press gallery, main media center, international broadcast center, to the host broadcaster BERTA and the Berlin Olympic Stadium. Incast also provided connection for the giant LCD screens inside the stadium and also at the Brandenburg Gate for the Berlin Marathon on Sept. 20.

All of the live feeds went into the main control room of the host broadcasters’ international broadcast center, which was 400m away from the stadium. With 12 SD-SDI and two HD-SDI signals running at such long distances, optical fiber cabling was used because it enables much longer distances and is more affordable than conventional SDI cabling.

Incast used Blackmagic Design Optical Fiber Mini Converters to convert between SDI and optical fiber signals. From the optical fiber converters, the SDI signals went directly into the Blackmagic Design Studio Videohub. Digital signals were converted to analog feeds for cable TV and to the giant LCD screens in the stadium.