Panasonic Cameras to Capture the Pope’s U.S. Visit

NEWARK, N.J.—Pope Francis is set to make his first trip to the United States from Sept. 22-27, visiting Washington D.C., New York and Philadelphia. On Saturday, Sept. 26, Pope Francis will give a special papal mass at the Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul in Philadelphia, and Panasonic will be on hand with a group of cameras to provide live video feed to the church’s 2,200 congregants and to viewers worldwide.

HE870 camera set up in Cathedral Basilica in Philadelphia

Eight Panasonic remote production cameras—six AW-HE130 integrated 1/3-inch pan/tilt/zoom cameras and two AW-HE870 2/3-inch 3-CCD multipurpose cameras—have been installed in the church. Four HE130s have been installed in the main body of the church, a fifth on the right side of the altar for a shot of the congregation, and a sixth in the choir loft on top of the organ looking toward the altar.

The HE870s, with their 2/3-inch optics and 20x zoom lensing, will be able to capture a wider range of the mass. One HE870 is placed on the left side of the choir loft to capture the opposite direction on the pulpit as well as wider shots of the procession from the back of the church to the altar. The other HE870 will sit on the left side of the altar, looking back through the church to the vestibule, including the ability to film the church’s stained-glass windows.

In addition, two AJ-PX270 P2 HD camcorders with Paralinx Triton 1:1 wireless transmission systems will be used during the mass.

A new control room was built for this mass, located in the church’s upper sacristy. HD-SDI cabling runs from the cameras back to the master control room, while an IP connection is maintained through a Panasonic AW-RP120 remote camera controller.

Live video coverage of the papal mass will be fed to a multi-box in the church’s parking area, and also over fiber to ESM Productions, who will then feed them to video walls outside the church and along the Benjamin Franklin Parkway and the Philadelphia Convention Center.