Los Angeles, CA - Pacific Television Center (PacTV), a leading provider of global transmission and live broadcast production services, has installed several new products from FOR-A Corporation of America at its Los Angeles, CA facility, including: three FRC-7000 HD frame rate converters, two HVS-300RPS 1/ME multi-format production switchers, and one MBP-100SX MXF clip server.
With facilities in Los Angeles, New York, and London, PacTV provides live broadcast production and transmission via satellite and high-speed fiber.
Live sports telecasts, satellite media tours, and news pool feeds are among the many services PacTV offers. On a typical day, celebrities, authors, and other newsmakers come to PacTV's Los Angeles studio, sit before the camera, and join live shows on CNN, MSNBC, FOX, among other major broadcast networks to discuss hot topics or plug their latest books and movies.
"The core of our business is transmitting whatever live shots or TV programs are needed by broadcasters around the world. These events are often very high-profile sports and entertainment events like Premier League football or the MTV Video Music Awards," said Jakob Nielsen, project coordinator for Pacific Television Center in Los Angeles (http://www.pactv.com).
"We rely heavily on our FRC-7000 frame rate converters to handle whatever signal format conversion is needed by our diverse, global clientele," said Nielsen. "With advanced features like vector motion compensation and automatic scene cut detection, the FRC-7000 handles technically demanding signal conversion cost effectively, without introducing artifacts."
FRC-7000 HD frame rate converters
One of PacTV's three FOR-A FRC-7000 HD frame rate converters was used from October 3-14, 2010 to "back-haul" the Commonwealth Games from Delhi, India to CBC, a major Canadian broadcast network. This transmission, which ran for 10 days, involved real-time conversion. Nielsen called it "a flawless operation."
"HD sports, such as hockey and golf, pose unique compression challenges to any frame rate converter. We need a frame rate converter intelligent enough to distinguish between small or steady objects moving in the foreground and very fast-changing, visually busy backgrounds," Nielsen said. The FRC-7000's new audio function card gives the converter up to 16 channels of audio, support for Dolby E encoding and decoding, and an adjustable delay circuit, making it ideal for live music, award shows, and specials.
HVS-300RPS multi-format production switchersWith regard to the production switchers, the FOR-A HVS-300RPS 1 M/E, HD/SD switchers replaced older analog switchers. While the studios are primarily configured for one HD broadcast camera, multi-camera shoots are booked as well, and the new FOR-A switchers are integral to producing these live shots.
The HVS-300RPS supports up to 12 inputs and 8 outputs of standard HD/SD-SDI, and offers a built-in frame synchronizer and resizing engine for handling non-synchronized HD/SD inputs without external devices.
As a cost-effective turnkey service, PacTV can transmit live signals via its own high-speed fiber optic network, as well as over fiber networks run by its strategic global partners, to virtually every major city in the world. PacTV is also home to The Switch (fiber optic network) in Los Angeles; serves as a Los Angeles POP for Intelsat; and ties into the AT&T Hollywood Hub and VYVX private networks.
MBP-100SX MXF clip server
For Network Ten (http://ten.com.au), a major broadcast network in Australia, PacTV installed a FOR-A MBP-100SX MXF clip server so that their Sydney-based client could download episodes of the syndicated American shows they air, such as "Raising Hope," "Lie To Me," "The Simpsons," and "Glee."
Using Windows Video Desktop and a Gigabit Ethernet network, Network Ten operators can access show files that have been forwarded to the PacTV play-out server via satellite or fiber network by program syndicators. They then download the files from the clip server at PacTV to their local cache server hours before the shows must air, and the entire process is done remotely from Sydney. Rather than waiting days for tape deliveries, file transfers now provide fast turnarounds that transcend delivery challenges between different countries and time zones.
"In the broadcast industry today, major studios increasingly send MPEG-2 files encoded in an industry-standard MXF media wrapper rather than videotape," Nielsen explained. "The MBP-100SX is an ideal store/forward server for this application because it converts between MXF format files and HD/SD baseband video, a critical function not all play-out servers do.
"International broadcasters need reliable delivery and pristine broadcast quality," Nielsen said, "and these new FOR-A products help us meet their expectations."
FOR-A is a major manufacturer and distributor of video and audio systems to the broadcast, postproduction and professional video markets. For more information about FOR-A's product line, call 714-894-3311 or visit our web site at www.for-a.com.