Multiformat SD/HD Switcher Enables Complex Conversions for Chinese Broadcaster's Outside Event Coverage
READING, U.K. — Feb. 23, 2010 — Chinese broadcaster Shenzhen Media Group (SZMG) has chosen Snell's Kahuna multiformat SD/HD production switcher as the centerpiece of its strategy to expand its outside broadcasting (OB) capabilities. With the Kahuna switcher installed in SZMG's new, state-of-the-art HD vehicle, the broadcaster is well-equipped to cover even the largest sporting and entertainment events and to perform the complex hybrid SD/HD conversions such major events require.
"The Kahuna production switcher is the ideal solution to provide a true multiformat production environment for SZMG's new mobile production facility," said Mr. Han Lun, project manager of Century Sage Scientific System Ltd. (CSS), the systems integrator on the project. "Kahuna gives Shenzhen multiformat production capabilities, and also simplifies the entire system design by eliminating the need for an up/down converter. Kahuna provides a very flexible environment for integrating multiformat sources without a complicated setup."
SZMG, a regional television and radio network serving China's Guangdong province, set out to commission the new HD vehicle in order to facilitate local coverage of two highly visible upcoming sporting events: the 16th Asian Games, scheduled for 2010 in Guangzhou, and the 26th Universiade, an international multisport event sponsored by the International University Sports Federation (FISU) scheduled for 2011 in Shenzhen. The new vehicle serves as a mobile control center and will provide immediate OB facilities for production, communication, and networking to support live production and post-production for large-scale events and activities. Since the OB truck will be broadcasting in both HD and SD and will be drawing from content sources in a wide range of formats, multiformat capabilities were a critical requirement for the system design. Therefore, CSS recommended the Snell Kahuna switcher to anchor multiformat and conversion operations for the project.
Designed to operate in the 1080/50i HD format, SZMG's new vehicle processes feeds from eight HD camera sources with the capability to expand to a 14-camera operation through linkage with an electronic field production (EFP) system. The Kahuna switcher's mainframe includes a 3 M/E control panel configuration that can accept video sources in either SD or HD, and then mix them together with digital video effects and other components to output a live HD production. The OB system has been designed for maximum flexibility and easy expansion. The entire system is capable of accepting feeds from up to 20 cameras and external video sources. Within these sources, eight channels are synchronized HD/SD sources and 12 are asychronized.
"For its new OB system, SZMG was committed to choosing the most advanced products available for performing HD/SD multiformat production and conversion. That's why Kahuna was such an ideal choice for the production switcher," said Jonathan Mortimer, sales director, Snell Asia/Pacific. "With Kahuna onboard, the new OB vehicle can handle all formats required for outside broadcasting with the flexibility and expandability to enable the system to grow and adapt in the years to come."