Client: Tennis Australia, ESPN, WOWOW
Project: Australian Open Tennis
The television compound built by Gearhouse in only ten days houses all technical facilities, CCU, on air slo-mo, logging, media management, scoring, radio cameras, engineering support, robotics, CAR, MCR, QC, production galleries and audio control. Then, in a separate building, are the unilaterals for broadcast partners which include ESPN, Channel 7, Wowow, SKY NZ, EuroSport and Sports Bet which between them boast over 150 fibre lines, 2500 splices, 9km of cable and over 30 feeds to a satellite farm all linked to the host, central patch room and studios.
Using a combination of multiple Riedel and RTS Telex matrices (from 64×64 to 128×128) and over 400 KP32, DCP16, RCP28 and RCP12 keypanels Gearhouse links the host and all the other broadcasters with a mix of MADI, fibre and 4-wire connections. Such is the flexibility of the Riedel and RTS systems that the Gearhouse team can even turn presenters’ volume up and down if required. The RTS comms link Channel 7 and ESPN to their respective HQ’s in Docklands and Connecticut, USA via RVON where keypanels in Melbourne are mimicked for ultimate ease of use. There’s also a dizzying array of radio comms with 40 channels of radio mics and in ear monitoring, 400 handled radios, 25 duplex base stations and 20 simplex base stations each with 1-2 frequencies making the frequency management alone a mammoth task.
The 56 EVS’ are used predominantly for slow motion, server ingest, media management and logging. There is a clever EVS to 256TB SAN ingest pathway that sits alongside two 10GB pipes, one for archiving and one into Tennis Australia’s server so editors can browse footage for highlights at lightning fast speeds.
The cameras at the Australian Open Tennis boast 56 Hitachi SK1200, 7 SK1500,[•] DKH100 with Camera Core pan tilt heads, 4 NAC extreme slo mo, 25 Q Ball robotic heads, 11 HDC1500 and 15 PDW700 radio cameras with Vislink microwave links and control systems. The army of roving cameras have coverage across the entire Melbourne Park precinct utilising multiple antenna sites to get hero shots such as the locker room through tunnel to centre court walk. Completing the ensemble are three radio cameras sitting atop the Eureka Tower, 101 Columns and AAMI Park sending back the panoramic beauty shots we see interspersed throughout the day’s coverage.
The Lawo MC56 broadcast consoles are networked to a central core by fibre and all with the ability of switching any signal to any desk at any time. The MC56 are also connected to the courts so they can also switch any mics or audio signals to any desk.