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Webster City High School Launches Live Sports Coverage with Broadcast Pix Video Control Center

Billerica, Massachusetts – Broadcast Pix™ today announced Webster City High School in Webster City, Iowa, is using a Granite™ 1000 Video Control Center™ to produce live coverage of its varsity athletics from its new competition gymnasium. The school covered all six of its home girls volleyball matches in late 2012, and is currently shooting home boys and girls basketball and wrestling contests.

Live sports coverage is a new challenge for student video production at the school, which has been focused primarily on a weekly newscast. Now in its 14th year, WCTV is a 10-15 minute newscast produced by students that is distributed on an internal cable system and a local community access channel, as well as iTunes and other Internet sites.

When it came time to replace the program’s GlobeCaster switcher and other core SD production equipment, Webster City decided to make the transition to full HD production. Then, according to Mark Murphy, director of technology, Webster City Community Schools, officials decided to expand the video production program by integrating video cameras into the new gym, providing students with the opportunity to produce live sports coverage.

The first phase of the process included the purchase of the Granite system, three Canon HD studio cameras, and other equipment for the 2010 school year, which was purchased from and integrated by Alpha Video in Edina, Minn. The second phase added cameras to the gym and connected the control room to the new facility via fiber in time for the 2012 volleyball season. Murphy said the system will also be used to produce commencement, concert, and special event coverage as well.

Anchored by the Granite, the control room is about 1,100 feet away from the gym, located next to the school’s 400-square-foot studio. The gym is equipped with three ceiling-mounted Panasonic HD cameras and four wall-mounted cameras. All cameras are controlled robotically by students in the control room. The permanently installed cameras and fiber infrastructure that connects to gym to the control room saves hours of setup and strike time for every event, Murphy noted.

Students really like the Granite system, particularly the PixButtons, which include built-in displays to show the device icon and file name of a clip or graphic. “It’s very easy for them to know what source they’re on and where they’re going,” Murphy explained. “It really makes it easy for them to operate.”

Webster City uses a number of the built-in Fluent™ workflow tools, and recently began using Fluent Macros for its wrestling coverage. During some tournaments, there is action on three mats simultaneously. With a camera covering each mat, a macro creates a split screen to provide footage from each match.

Fluent Rapid CG™ 2, an option for Granite and Mica™ Video Control Centers that supports Daktronics scoreboards, automatically integrates databases and custom actions like scorekeeping into templates to streamline the creation of data-intensive graphics. Webster City uses Fluent Rapid CG 2 with a Daktronics All Sport CG to provide real-time score data during its live coverage. “It’s working great for us,” said Murphy. “The data feed can update the same data element on multiple screens. We really like that option.”

With live coverage of several sporting events and dozens of newscasts already completed, Murphy is very pleased with the Granite system. “It’s really helped our production workflow become smoother,” he said. “Technically, the quality is better – and the convenience of an all-in-one package is really a great thing.”

About Broadcast Pix The leader in live video production systems with end-to-end integration, Broadcast Pix was founded in 2002 and has customers in more than 110 countries. Its Video Control Centers™ combine an integrated switcher, clip server, CG, and external control software with patented control panels, unique touch-screens, and exceptional displays. Systems range from compact systems controlled by touch-screen or voice automation to large sophisticated control panels. Customers include leading broadcast, streaming, sports, corporate, education, religious, and government studios. Learn more at www.broadcastpix.com.

Broadcast Pix, Fluent, Fluent Rapid CG, Granite, Mica, and Video Control Centers are trademarks of Broadcast Pix, Inc. Patented. Made in USA.

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