CBS Sports HD initiative selects Utah Scientific for master control and routing

CBS Sports is using signal processing and distribution equipment from Utah Scientific for a new HD broadcast project that will include extensive use of the company's master control and routing switchers.

The network has installed Utah Scientific's MC-2020 SD/HD master control and UTAH-400 HD routing switchers in its prototype HD sports coordination room and has already used them for network coverage of the 2006 NCAA Championships.

CBS has nine SD sports coordination rooms, which it uses to coordinate the switching and routing operations of concurrent games and pre-game shows throughout the country, as well as for commercial insertion. CBS considers its new room a prototype for its HD sports broadcasting and has plans to transition all of the SD rooms to HD as well.

Within the new HD coordination room, CBS Sports installed a 64 x 64 UTAH-400 in front of the dual-channel MC-2020, allowing network engineers to increase the sources available to the MC-2020 as needed. The MC-2020 features four keyers per channel, as well as audio board kits for each channel for use with both separate AES and embedded audio. The UTAH-400 features four programmable router control panels for controlling auxiliary/utility busses, along with redundant power supplies, crosspoint cards, and controller cards.

The MC-2020 comes standard with a fast commercial breakaway feature, particularly useful for large broadcasters such as CBS, to coordinate the insertion of regional commercials quickly within one game broadcast for different parts of the country. The UTAH-400, meanwhile, features a scalable matrix architecture that allows users to expand from 8 x 8 to 64 x 64, all the way up to 1152 x 1152.

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