Broadcast Engineering - February 2009 - (Page 14)
Technology in acTion Beyond the headlines Tapeless technology Multicamera studio productions benefit from a digital workflow. By Nicolas BourdoN here are several elements to consider before selecting the equipment and technology to support an end-to-end tapeless workflow for the production of a multicamera television series. Here are some of the performance points and interfaces to look for. Desirable features First, look at the recording process. This includes the number and type of cameras, which native codecs the production will use and the different sources from which the material will come. t of the sources and of the playout. To aid the operators, the control software must be user-oriented and able to give instant access to any media from anywhere, which demands high data rate network interfaces. To make the clip referencing process fast and easy, the production will need to use content management, which must include a searchable metadata. Producers also need central metadata databases for fast sharing across the network. In order to have instant access to archived material, the system will need gateways to scalable media storage. ment that is oriented toward new media distribution and has a high level of flexibility. They want scalability and the ability to upgrade at each step and level of the production. Producers are used to shooting to tape, but look to improved turnarounds and shortened production cycles with tapeless production. They also expect the media file handling to be as reliable (or better) than tape. In any fast turnaround television production, it is vital to get good support from equipment providers, which includes availability of training from the manufacturers and systems integrators. One aspect that must not be overlooked when making a radical change in production methods is managing existing staff ’s resistance to change. Managers must make sure that those involved with the production can adapt to the new workflow. The manning level may change. For a tapeless production, depending on allocated budget and how many staff are available, there is generally a VTR/server operator, a production switcher operator, a production assistant or CG operator, and script or note-taking personnel on the studio floor. A typical end-to-end workflow can be split into several generic, logical steps. (See Figure 1 on page 16.) Technical requirements While working on multicamera TV programs, producers usually want to: • gain speed and efficiency during the production process; • work on a platform that is SD/HD compatible; • record camera feeds natively in multiple codecs; • adapt to existing production infrastructure in terms of storage, linear The “el Intrenado” talk show, aired on Spanish channel La Sexta, is produced by MEDIAPRO. The show is shot direct to production servers with control and rough cut editing performed with EVS IPDirector. The next factor is the management of live production and rough cut editing. This encompasses the number of simultaneous ingest channels, including both audio and video, and how to perfectly synchronize the sources. Also under consideration must be the production formats, including codecs To run seamlessly, the primary components should integrate with third-party tools and post production. This includes interoperable codecs, metadata exchange, control protocols and, for support, partnerships between vendors. Producers want and expect equip- 14 broadcastengineeringworld.com | February 2009
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