A virtual press conference from Sound & Video Contractor

Archive by Brian Galante

TNDV Captures Creative Energy of Amnesty International Show at Barclays Center

Mobile production specialist’s use of film-style cameras for musical performances enhances dramatic feel of charitable event

NASHVILLE, March 26, 2014TNDV has had a busy mobile production schedule through the first quarter of 2014, with Amnesty International’s Bring Human Rights Home Concert last month standing out as its most unique project. The event, which took place at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, featured a roster of interesting musical acts aligned with the organization’s mission of fighting injustice and promoting human rights.

TNDV brought its 40-foot expanding side truck, Aspiration, to capture live performances for in-venue image magnification; and to serve as the central command center for content acquisition. The uniquely dramatic elements of the event – which included a rousing speech and performance of two recently-imprisoned members of the Russian musical act Pussy Riot — influenced TNDV to make some changes to its mobile production workflow. This included the use of Canon EOS C300 cinema cameras, which introduced new production possibilities while challenging the crew.

“It was going back to Truck 101,” said Nic Dugger, president and owner, TNDV. “We basically reverse-engineered the truck to work with a camera designed for the film industry, making adjustments across the infrastructure to ensure that the cameras worked with every component. We also lost of a lot of the creature comforts we are used to with the cameras themselves. However, we gained a look and feel that is not easily achievable with broadcast cameras, thanks to a shallow depth of field and some incredibly high resolution images.”

Dugger and his team engineered nine HD video outputs to support the cameras, with feeds frame synched and time-code locked content for delivery across Aspiration’s switching, routing and multiviewing infrastructure. In addition to magnifying performances from The Flaming Lips, Tegan and Sara, and other performers on large venue screens, live feeds were recorded to in-camera memory cards and Aja KiPro recorders on the truck for future use by the organization. The KiPros recorded the feeds using a progressive segmented frame rate, allowing TNDV to capture the content in the 24p-style preferred by the film director.

But there were a number of more unusual compensations for which the TNDV team needed to engineer solutions.

“The most important element we offered this show was a way to monitor cameras and fully understand what was happening,” said Dugger. “Being cinema cameras, the C300s don’t have tally lights, which means there is no obvious way to know what camera is on the air. They also don’t have return video, which means we can’t press a button and watch the line cut in the viewfinder. It made for even higher reliance on our Imagine Communications multiviewer system, while actively listening to the director to understand his next move.”

TNDV achieved that last point by taking advantage of the Barclays Center’s extensive fiber infrastructure. Dugger used Aja Fido bricks to convert HD-SDI signals to fiber and transport signals from every corner of the venue to the loading dock, where Aspiration was parked. That same infrastructure carried multiple RTS intercom feeds, enabling digital point-to-point communications with anyone connected to the matrix.

“That is where the world of film and TV really came together for this project,” said Dugger. “The film director and his camera crew were able to use a mix of matrix-station intercom connections and belt packs on a party line to communicate across the venue — something they typically don’t get to do. This enabled very effective communications across all cameras and departments.”

Dugger added that using the C300 cameras provided a taste of what’s to come with 4K, as he and other truck companies start to consider the most effective upgrade strategies to meet those next-generation production requirements.

“We’ll have to retrain our brains to become more familiar with the film approach to production, where lens millimeters and F-Stops have a major effect on high-resolution image characteristics,” he said. “This project helped us understand how to achieve better light-balance in the absence of traditional shading, for example. The transition to 4K is going to force us to pay more attention to focus, resolution and other aspects related to the intensive imaging requirements.”

ABOUT TNDV: Television
Formed in 2004, TNDV: Television represents the culmination of many years of broadcast and live production for Nic Dugger, owner and president; and his staff of full time engineers. TNDV produces events from small single-camera productions all the way up to multi-million dollar international TV events, and takes pride in building custom solutions for challenging productions of any size, in any situation. Recent productions include the live concert productions at the NCAA Final Four, the 2013 Re/Max Long Drive Challenge on ESPN, and the inaugural season of Sing for Your Supper on PBS. Please call 615-585-6528 or visit www.tndv.com for more information.

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Barix Targets Private Radio Networks and Content Providers at 2014 NAB Show

New in-store radio solutions cover the spectrum for live retail radio, scheduled program playback

ZURICH/ST. PAUL, MINNESOTA, March 25, 2014Barix comes to the 2014 NAB Show with a new strategy to create more efficient operations for private radio networks and content providers: fewer separate pieces, and more complete solutions.

At its NAB booth (Las Vegas Convention Center, April 7-10, Booth C1139), Barix will unveil two new complete solutions for in-store radio deployments that eliminate the device-centric philosophy of its previous-generation solutions, while delivering new operational efficiencies and revenue generating opportunities:
Store & Play, a complete hardware and software solution for scheduled playout of music and advertising with automatic content updates
SoundScape, a complete live streaming and stored playback solution that enables simple, centralized management across large networks via a portal to control users, content, scheduling and monitoring

Store & Play
The next-generation Barix Store and Play solution receives its debut at the 2014 NAB Show. Store & Play gives private radio networks a flexible application for retailers and other businesses that want dynamic in-store radio programming without using too many network resources. While live streaming audio typically doesn’t require a large amount of network space, many businesses have limited network bandwidth to begin with – or otherwise want more control over what they are playing at what time.

Like previous generations, the new Barix Store & Play allows customers to download music and advertising content off the network, and reliably play out that programming on schedule with excellent audio quality. Unlike previous generations, the new Store & Play is a complete hardware and software solution as opposed to a device-centric system. Overall, the new Store & Play delivers much download speeds approaching 100 times faster, as well as improved system memory to preserve quality of playback through demanding processing actions. Additionally, a built-in MicroSD card eliminates theft of monetized content, while built-in precision clock timing ensures that playback schedules remain intact in the event of network outages. Overall, the new Store & Play solution vastly increases flexibility for content providers with a need for scheduled playback of in-store content.

SoundScape
SoundScape, unveiled in February, allows private radio networks to comprehensively manage audio distribution over IP networks, offering a centralized management portal and audio players at multiple locations. Users can manage, configure and group SoundScape audio players, schedule content and monitor device status network-wide.

SoundScape adds in-store radio flexibility through support of live streams and stored content playback over the same network, with seamless switching between the two applications. Both options support targeted, location-based advertising insertions that seamlessly fade in and out of music programs.

The network-wide management capabilities of SoundScape further reduces costs and complexity by enabling private radio networks to remotely deliver firmware updates, create and monitor logs, and track play reports for sponsors. This takes the onus off private radio networks who previously used in-house or third-party monitoring solutions to perform such services.

SoundScape additionally provides value through an ability to target content across the network. The end-to-end architecture ensures that businesses can group devices to receive specific ads, other languages or completely different programs – whether by location, by department or otherwise.

“Businesses of all kinds, including many private radio networks, have long used Barix in-store radio solutions to deliver live streams and file-based playlists to stores and locations,” said Ronni Guggenheim, CEO, Barix. “SoundScape and Store & Play retain the core Barix competency of efficiently and reliably moving audio across IP networks with outstanding audio quality, while introducing new features that will ultimately enable private radio networks and content providers to help their customers create better brand awareness and improve in-store experiences – with added flexibility and cost-efficiency.”

Barix: We Move Audio (www.barix.com)
Barix supplies simple and reliable solutions and components to systems integrators and end users worldwide. We move high-quality audio across IP networks, adding value to customer solutions for more than a decade with hundreds of thousands of devices installed worldwide. Background music distribution with dynamic advertising insertion for retail shops, bars and hotels; public address solutions for schools and public spaces; and intercom and entry systems for facility surveillance, protection and security are among the many applications of Barix solutions. Barix also supports OEM projects for a number of Global 500 listed companies serving many industries worldwide.

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Barix AG, Seefeldstrasse 303, 8008 Zurich, Switzerland
Phone: +41 43 43322 11, Fax: +41 44 2742849
Barix Technology Inc, St. Paul, MN – (866) 815-0866

http://www.barix.com

http://www.ip-audio.info

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Tightrope Media Systems Launches New Instant Replay System, Strengthens Cablecast Feature Set

New ZEPLAY offers lower entry costs for professional-grade sports replay, while Cablecast 5.3 enhances overall workflow for broadcasters

ST. PAUL, MINNESOTA, March 25, 2013Tightrope Media Systems is coming to the 2014 NAB Show with exciting product launches and enhancements that bring more operational benefits to existing customers, while creating a foundation to expand into new business areas.

At NAB (Las Vegas Convention Center, April 7-10, Booth C6508), Tightrope will introduce a new 2×2 version of its tried-and-true ZEPLAY slo-mo instant replay solution for sports production. The new version brings the same rock-solid stability, ease of use and expansive feature set of its 4×4 sibling at a much lower cost of entry – as in roughly half the price.

“We have found that many customers don’t require the four-in, four-out, eight-angle support that our original ZEPLAY solution offers,” said Steve Israelsky, broadcast solutions lead, Tightrope Media Systems. “A large cross section of our customer base in the local cable market was being underserved in this sector. The 2×2 ZEPLAY gives these and other customers, including small-to-mid sized venues and colleges, an affordable, feature-rich and reliable solution to enhance the sports fan experience. It also gives our 4×4 customers another option if they want to add more angles at a lower price.”

Both ZEPLAY units will incorporate new features for NAB that are available in the ZEPLAY 3.0 release, scheduled for right after the show. This includes a new export feature that allows production staff to export entire multi-angle sequences as opposed to individual clips, making it easier to share engaging content – and game-changing moments – immediately in an edited sequence as opposed to a series of individual clips.

ZEPLAY 3.0 also adds a number of operator-oriented refinements to the sequence editor. Individual clip speeds across sequences have always been variable, allowing operators to show play highlights from one angle at full speed; and then show the culmination of the play in slow motion from a different angle. ZEPLAY users can now specify a default rate for the entire sequence, and then modify that speed from the T-Bar as the sequence plays out. ZEPLAY 3.0 also includes an enhanced audio capability to assist in editing the highlight sequences, as well as improvements in the storyboard and editing window layouts.

Cablecast Streaming

Speaking of local cable channels, Tightrope has enhanced its Cablecast server and automation platform with new streaming, processing and monitoring features that introduce new efficiencies and operational improvements. These developments are particularly ideal for Tightrope’s large PEG channel and university customer base.

Foremost, the incorporation of H.264 streaming vastly improves compatibility for multiplatform delivery. The main benefits are twofold: consumers can easily watch PEG channel content on tablets, smartphones and other mobile devices; and station engineers can cleanly monitor playout on these same devices, as opposed to being tied to a desktop station.

“The evolution to H.264 streaming means that broadcasters, including PEG channels, can deliver more streams at higher quality to more viewers, thanks to exceptional bandwidth improvements and compatibility across more playout devices,” said Israelsky. “The ability to deliver important local content to more viewers is a benefit both to the station and the community. It is a feature that many PEG channels are ready to incorporate as they more aggressively work to expand audiences in the digital TV age.”

Additionally, Cablecast 5.3 adds AFD support to automatically and seamlessly present on-air content across 16:9 and 4:3 screens in the most attractive manner, without awkward cropping and reformatting. This ensures that content looks great on screen without the need for expensive up, down, cross and aspect ratio conversion gear.

Tightrope has also enhanced its built-in RAID monitoring solution for Cablecast, reporting potential issues directly within the user interface – alerting customers well in advance of potentially devastating events. The service also automatically backs up database content and information to the cloud for quick restoration in the event of a critical error.

Finally, the new Cablecast 5.3 release also expands compatibility with routing switchers, adding support for Snell/Pro-Bel and Aja routers. This raises the number of routers supported within Cablecast to near 100, ensuring that customers can control routing traffic, stream playout and more for a tighter overall workflow.

About Tightrope Media Systems

Founded in 1997, Tightrope Media Systems is the pioneer of web-centric digital signage and broadcast automation systems. It provides station automation, video servers, internet video on demand, live streaming, the Carousel Digital Signage system, and ZEPLAY, a multi-channel instant replay machine for stadiums, arenas and Outside Broadcast vehicles. Tightrope’s award winning systems are used throughout the world. You can reach Tightrope Media Systems at (866) 866-4118 or visit them on the web at http://www.trms.com.

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Tightrope Elevates Instant Replay Capabilities for Georgia Tech Sports

Versatile slo-mo instant replay system instrumental in diversifying content for broadcast and in-venue productions

ST. PAUL, MINNESOTA, March 12, 2014 – The Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets athletic department comprises 17 sports teams competing in the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC), with a dedicated legion of fans inside and outside the student/alumni community. The university rewarded its men’s and women’s basketball fans with upgraded game production capabilities prior to last season, delivering a vastly improved live sports experience for fans in the arena and watching the ESPN3 broadcasts.

The production upgrades, first centralized in the Hank McGamish Pavilion’s new control room, have since been extended to other venues on campus via fiber connectivity. The result brings the benefits of a modern digital control room, including slo-mo instant replay courtesy of Tightrope Media Systems, to football and volleyball games – with baseball and other sports soon to follow.

Tightrope’s ZEPLAY slo-mo instant replay system was installed alongside a complement of new cameras, switching and signal processing gear designed to simplify technical operations and improve the fan experience. Georgia Tech Director of Video Operations Andy Blanton believes that they have achieved both with the new control room and remote fiber connections, noting ZEPLAY’s significance in both situations.

“The experience of sitting in the venue is very different from the experience of being at home,” said Blanton. “We’re contracted to provide exclusive and balanced content for the ESPN3 broadcasts while using the same equipment and cast of characters for the in-venue productions. We don’t want to show replays of a visiting team player lighting up the court with dunks and three-pointers to fans in the arena. ZEPLAY gives us the flexibility to highlight exciting Yellow Jackets play for the home fans and cover up some of that action to broadcast audiences.”

From an operational perspective, ZEPLAY has delivered an easy and intuitive platform for control room operators to quickly execute replays, tag content and build tailored highlight packages based on targeted audiences. The built-in multiviewer also helps the ZEPLAY operator understand which angles are best suited for the broadcast and the in-venue production.

Perhaps most important to Blanton is the ability to quickly – and natively – archive and export clips, as the team is tasked with sharing content with multiple sources almost immediately following games. Similarly, much of that archived content is seamlessly imported back into the workflow to show recent highlights in subsequent games.

“We have a system in place to send footage straight from ZEPLAY to the conference office, which they distribute to the opponent we played that night,” said Blanton. “We share that same content, including a melt of highlights, with a multitude of recipients including media, our partners and our coach’s show. We simply hit the archive button and export those clips to the different recipients, with no transcoding required. ZEPLAY natively delivers content to three different editing systems in our case: Adobe Premiere, Final Cut Pro and Avid. It’s an enormous time-saver for our staff.”

Blanton adds that he’s been able to train operators to use ZEPLAY “within minutes,” including tagging plays with the right information to further accelerate the post-game archive-and-export process. That simple tagging capability also helps his operators keep track which players are hot, as well other developing trends of a game to create home and visitor highlight packages.

Further down the road, Blanton plans to integrate a Tightrope Carousel digital signage solution into the overall workflow to deliver content to display screens Hank McGamish Pavilion. He cites the cost and flexibility of Tightrope solutions as an overall attraction.

“We expect to incorporate Carousel into future marketing efforts, but the price point and feature sets of both products made the purchases an easy decision,” said Blanton. “We initially had another instant replay system in mind. Our consultant, Anthony James Partners, suggested that with just a little more money we could get a far more robust system in ZEPLAY that performs just as well as the high-end, expensive instant replay solutions. That recommendation, along with positive reviews, really swayed our decision to go with Tightrope.”

About Tightrope Media Systems
Founded in 1997, Tightrope Media Systems is the pioneer of web-centric digital signage and broadcast automation systems. It provides station automation, video servers, Internet video on demand, live streaming, the Carousel Digital Signage system, and ZEPLAY, a multi-channel instant replay machine for stadiums, arenas and Outside Broadcast vehicles. Tightrope’s award winning systems are used throughout the world. You can reach Tightrope Media Systems at (866) 866-4118 or visit them on the web at http://www.trms.com.

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St. Paul Union Depot Reopens with Dynamic Tightrope Digital Signage Systems

Carousel solution powers interactive and static displays for passenger wayfinding, ad-driven revenue generation

ST. PAUL, MINNESOTA, March 5, 2014 – The Union Depot transportation center in downtown St. Paul once serviced more than 20,000 commuters a day, with passenger and freight railroad services for the Twin Cities and the state of Minnesota. Forty years after passenger rail service was discontinued in 1971, Union Depot has been renovated and reopened, with Tightrope Media Systems supplying all dynamic digital signage systems and interactive kiosks.

The Tightrope Carousel solution, integrated by Tierney Brothers, replaces historical, legacy signage cabinets to bring a richer informational experience for visitors and residents using the multi-modal facility’s bus, rail, taxi and bike services. It also delivers new creative and reporting capabilities for Union Depot and its partners. The complete Carousel solution offers two unique channel layouts that are the basis of 12 individual channels delivered to 28 players.

According to Tina Volpe, marketing manager for Jones, Lang, LaSalle (the company that manages Union Depot), 22 historical cabinets were updated with modern, non-interactive displays featuring the Carousel system. In addition, six interactive kiosks allow travelers to find a variety of facility information as well details about local restaurants, shopping centers, events, news, notifications and more.

“The Carousel system is incredibly easy to use and quite intuitive,” said Volpe. “It’s just as easy as using any Microsoft product, such as Word, Power Point or Publisher. For marketing purposes, we can easily upload new information to the interactive map about events, public announcements, new locations, or even important emergency information such as bad storms or delays. It’s easy and fun for visitors to explore the interactive screens and features.”

From the start of the renovation, Union Depot envisioned its signage system as a dynamic, integrated source to deliver real-time information to visitors while supporting future revenue-generating needs. The system serves multiple transit functions, displaying real-time arrival/departure information by route. Rather than require each transit partner to have a separate information system and display, Tierney Brothers integrated these into one system that captures the information from each partner. The results are centralized into a common Union Depot-branded display.

“This system integrates these various data streams seamlessly, and also gives the individual transit providers the ability to have local custom messaging like ‘weather delay’ in an override situation,” said Volpe.

In fact, the digital signage system not only acts as a wayfinder, but also as a concierge. “Because we don’t yet have all of our transit modes up and running, we don’t necessarily have enough foot traffic to qualify staffing guest services all day to assist customers,” said Volpe. “The digital signage systems serve that function for those times when we don’t staff on schedule.”

In addition to providing visitors with helpful information, the systems also help to drive additional revenue sources for Union Depot. Volpe and her team can control alternate content and run rotating ads on the static screens for example, scrolling content from local businesses or customers who rent out facility space for events.

“We are definitely looking at the signage systems for advertising purposes as well,” said Volpe. “Having them generate additional revenue is certainly another business opportunity that we hope to grow over the next year.”

About Tightrope Media Systems
Founded in 1997, Tightrope Media Systems is the pioneer of web-centric digital signage and broadcast automation systems. It provides station automation, video servers, internet video on demand, live streaming, the Carousel Digital Signage system, and ZEPLAY, a multi-channel instant replay machine for stadiums, arenas and Outside Broadcast vehicles. Tightrope’s award winning systems are used throughout the world. You can reach Tightrope Media Systems at (866) 866-4118 or visit them on the web at http://www.trms.com.

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TNDV Lands New Facility as Tenth Anniversary Approaches

Mobile production specialist converts large, secure warehouse into creative business space

NASHVILLE, March 5, 2014TNDV celebrates ten years of business by securing a massive new facility in northeast Nashville that will double as a place of business and creativity. The secure, climate-controlled facility gives owner Nic Dugger and his growing team a space to maintain and upgrade trucks, host clients, plan upcoming projects and accommodate post-production work.

Dugger and his team re-designed the former armored truck warehouse from scratch, from concrete pours and office partitions to lighting, wiring and security systems. The 10,000 square foot space provides plenty of room to securely park and work on TNDV’s trucks, and includes a networked infrastructure with state-of-the-art AV technology to share data, audio and video across offices and conference rooms. The main board room is equipped with the latest HD playback and recording technology to evaluate and review projects with staff and clients, while UHDTV displays and fiber optic tie lines to the trucks enable real-time review of media still residing on video servers and ProTools.

While the technological gains are impressive, Dugger notes that the move was firmly rooted in square footage, with a need to better accommodate activity and growth.

“When we moved to our previous location six years ago, it was me and a truck,” he said. “Ten years into business we are at five trucks with seven full-time engineers and a crew of production freelancers. Bringing one truck into that facility meant we couldn’t prep for our next show effectively. Here, we can pull three trucks indoors at once to do maintenance, make upgrades and change infrastructure as needed. The last point is very important, as we do not force a fixed inventory on our clients. We are a la carte for each show, and constantly reconfigure our trucks. Now we have a spot to prepare for the many upcoming truck shoots we have, while taking advantage of our newest 4K production acquisition systems.”

The large space also provides plenty of room for post work. While not a post-production facility, TNDV frequently works with graphics, PowerPoint files and large video and audio files post-shoot. The large amount of space allows staff to do post work in a separate part of the facility, away from the daily business operations.

“We have one particular office that we set with extra power and conditioning, additional video, audio and fiber tie lines, and sound reinforcement,” said Dugger. “That way if we are cracking through some post-production on a loud concert we’re not disturbing the peace.”

This is just one example of how well-prepared the facility is to deal with media coming in and out, as well as moving files around on site. The design includes single-mode fiber tie lines throughout, with between four and eight Cat6 cables going to each office. This infrastructure supports anything from sending video feeds from one truck router to driving ProTools rigs on the audio truck — all while carrying traditional phone and internet data.

Dugger adds that the location gives his fleet quick access to interstates instead of having to slog through city traffic. Another interesting aside regarding location is its close proximity to the production site of the ABC TV show Nashville — which shoots at the warehouse immediately across the street.

“Unintentionally, we’re building a small production community in this northeast portion of Nashville,” he said. “We expect to be here for a long time, and I’m excited about identifying some key partners in the region that might need a space. We have plenty of room to set producers up with offices for long term projects. Essentially we want to build a ‘laborhood,’ where a group of complementary professionals can network, synergize and tap each other for resources, instead of having to live by Skype and conference calls to simply communicate.”

The new TNDV facility is located at 515 Brick Church Park Drive, Nashville, TN 37207.

ABOUT TNDV: Television
Formed in 2004, TNDV: Television represents the culmination of many years of broadcast and live production for Nic Dugger, owner and president; and his staff of full time engineers. TNDV produces events from small single-camera productions all the way up to multi-million dollar international TV events, and takes pride in building custom solutions for challenging productions of any size, in any situation. Recent productions include the live concert productions at the NCAA Final Four, the 2013 Re/Max Long Drive Challenge on ESPN, and the inaugural season of Sing for Your Supper on PBS. Please call 615-585-6528 or visit www.tndv.com for more information.

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Washington Family Ranch Extends Campus Reach with Barix IP Paging

Outreach ministry informs guests and staff with clarity and consistency across multiple zones

ZURICH, SWITZERLAND, February 26, 2014 — The Washington Family Ranch in rural central Oregon had a problem last summer: With 400 youth guests per week, the Young Life-owned ministry camp’s expensive, network-based paging system was failing. Receivers were transmitting live pages in a staggered manner, creating unintelligible messages — along with guest confusion and complaints.

Based on the suggestion of audio engineer/integrator Alan Stricklin, Washington Family Ranch installed a multipoint Barix IP Paging system this off-season. The system is fully tested and ready for the upcoming 13-week season, and delivering punch and clarity at all playout points thanks to low latency and exceptional audio quality.

“Our previous system was billed as Hi-Fi, but it was very hard to understand the messages with the various amps and receivers responding at different times,” said Andrew Pratt, guest services manager at Washington Family Ranch. “This past year we just turned the amps off, which left us exposed on the liability side. We were limited in how to alert our guests if something were to happen.”

Enter Barix courtesy of Stricklin, who also uses Barix solutions at Minnesota Public Radio. The complete solution gives Pratt and his staff a compact, easy-to-use master paging station in the main office that connects over the network to playout points in high-traffic locations. Pages are streamed live to Barix IP audio decoders at these locations, which prepare and deliver the messages over loudspeakers.

The result is clear messages for guests and staff in four dormitories, the main activity center, campus store, snack bar, dining hall, kitchen and main reception building. Pratt notes this is especially important in the event of a dangerous weather or a security situation, given the camp’s rural location.

“The intelligibility is exceptional and all our speakers are firing at the same time,” said Pratt. “We’re confident that wherever guests are standing that they will clearly hear the announcements, instead of trying to translate the messages.”

In addition to quality, Pratt cites low cost and simplicity as major benefits of the Barix IP Paging solution.

“This operates like a set it and forget it system, and I’m excited that it requires minimal management,” said Pratt. “We believe it will be the kind of system where we train people to use it at the beginning of the summer, and that’s it. The low cost of the system makes it seem as though we will absolutely get our money’s worth.”

The complete Barix IP Paging solution installed at Washington Family Ranch includes an Annuncicom PS1 master paging station, and Barix Exstreamer 205 IP audio decoders at playout points — the latter of which include built-in amplifiers to reduce costs and infrastructure. Looking forward, Pratt expects to take advantage of Barix scalability by adding more playout points via additional Exstreamers, and exploring multicast delivery — a Barix specialty — to minimize network bandwidth.

Barix: We Move Audio (www.barix.com)
Barix supplies simple and reliable solutions and components to systems integrators and end users worldwide. We move high-quality audio across IP networks, adding value to customer solutions for more than a decade with hundreds of thousands of devices installed worldwide. Background music distribution with dynamic advertising insertion for retail shops, bars and hotels; public address solutions for schools and public spaces; and intercom and entry systems for facility surveillance, protection and security are among the many applications of Barix solutions. Barix also supports OEM projects for a number of Global 500 listed companies serving many industries worldwide.

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Barix AG, Seefeldstrasse 303, 8008 Zurich, Switzerland
Phone: +41 43 43322 11, Fax: +41 44 2742849
Barix Technology Inc, St. Paul, MN – (866) 815-0866

http://www.barix.com

http://www.ip-audio.info

GatorVision Enhances University of Florida In-Venue Sports Production with Tightrope ZEPLAY

Slo-mo instant replay system offers school a robust feature set, reliable performance and affordable price point for upgraded control room

ST. PAUL, MINNESOTA, February 24, 2014GatorVision is the University of Florida athletic department’s broadcast and production initiative, handling live and on-demand event streaming and in-venue, game day coverage as part of its operation. The recently-built control room, located in the College of Journalism and Communications building on campus, houses a full complement of cutting-edge production gear suited to both outside broadcasts and in-venue content.

For in-venue productions, Tightrope Media Systems is helping the GatorVision production team score points with fans at football, basketball, volleyball and gymnastic events. The control room includes two of its ZEPLAY slo-mo instant replay systems to inject added excitement into game day action via multi-angle replays, on-the-fly highlight packages and more.

Brad Noblitt, director of engineering for University of Florida’s College of Journalism and Communications, states ease of use and flexibility as two reasons for choosing ZEPLAY over competitive solutions. Noblitt has assigned a seasoned operator of a well-known instant replay brand to operate the primary system. That operator simultaneously trains students to run the second ZEPLAY.

“The learning curve on ZEPLAY is not nearly as steep as competing products,” said Noblitt. “We have a lot of student involvement at GatorVision, being part of the College of Journalism and Communications. Our primary operator teaches students how to use ZEPLAY keystroke by keystroke. Within an hour, the student can really understand the concept of the workflow.”

Noblitt also feels that ZEPLAY offers the best price to feature set ratio of slo-mo instant replay systems available.

“This gives us a true four-by-four system,” said Noblitt, referring to its four input and four output configuration. “ZEPLAY offers a lot of flexibility based on the project size and budget. We rely heavily on the system for the fan experience, and I am astounded by how quickly we can produce multiple replays. We can fire off a replay even as our opponent heads back down the basketball court. It is the meat and potatoes of our system.”

The GatorVision team further benefits from a built-in multiviewer that provides operators with a clear visual tool to monitor the various camera angles. According to Noblitt, the ZEPLAYS never stop recording, which compel camera operators to keep shooting. This ultimately creates exceptional value in terms of replay content.

Noblitt adds that the latest software release has simplified how his team can edit, trim and build packages for game highlights. Additionally, the GatorVision team creates “melts” after every game for later use, with direct playout to our XDCam disc or as an exported .mov file(s). This highlights the open, non-proprietary nature of ZEPLAY.

These features combined add even more to the educational experience for College of Journalism and Communications students interested in learning the system.

“We can easily set up a simulated game by taking our four camera feeds from the previous game, and using one of our ZEPLAY units to playback the game through our switcher,” he said. “This helps us teach our students how to direct, how to TD and how to do replays offline. If there is a problem we can hit stop, discuss what went wrong, back up a few plays and try it a different way. We built that functionality into GatorVision because it is a teaching facility. ZEPLAY offers a teaching tool to get students up to speed with true hands-on experience.”

About Tightrope Media Systems

Founded in 1997, Tightrope Media Systems is the pioneer of web-centric digital signage and broadcast automation systems. It provides station automation, video servers, Internet video on demand, live streaming, the Carousel Digital Signage system, and ZEPLAY, a multi-channel instant replay machine for stadiums, arenas and Outside Broadcast vehicles. Tightrope’s award winning systems are used throughout the world. You can reach Tightrope Media Systems at (866) 866-4118 or visit them on the web at http://www.trms.com.

# # #

Tightrope Media Systems and BrightSign Announce Digital Signage Partnership

Digital Signage Expo exhibit will emphasize how signage operators can achieve affordable yet dynamic networks across large-scale deployments

ST. PAUL, MINNESOTA, February 10, 2014
Tightrope and BrightSign announce a partnership that brings complementary strengths of each company together for a powerful digital signage solution. Available this spring, the partnership aims to make affordable content creation, advanced management, and media playout across large out-of-home networks a reality.

BrightSign is the market leader in digital signage media players, specializing in large deployments and having successfully deployed more than 500,000 units worldwide. That scalability and BrightSign’s signature reliability, combined with the dynamic content capabilities and advanced user features of Tightrope’s Carousel system, produces a cost-efficient yet sophisticated digital signage platform for large-scale deployments.

Tightrope and BrightSign will demonstrate seamless integration across their products at Digital Signage Expo this week. Visitors to the Tightrope booth (#1053, Sands Convention Center) will learn how the full Carousel user experience pairs with the reliability of BrightSign media players to meet the demands of any enterprise or large, network-based installation.

“BrightSign specializes in designing and building bulletproof hardware for all kinds of digital signage applications,” said Jeff Hastings, CEO, BrightSign. Our continued growth and market penetration is due to our reputation for delivering extreme reliability and advanced hardware features such as the powerful video engine and hardware-accelerated HTML5 rendering engine in the BrightSign XD product line. To further serve the diverse needs of our customers, we are dedicated to integrating our hardware platform with leading CMS providers and proud to announce our partnership with Tightrope.”

Tightrope will emphasize BrightSign’s leadership in feature-rich digital signage solutions, displaying a channel of Carousel-created social media content (Twitter, Facebook), RSS feeds, weather information, template-based messages, videos and live emergency alerts. Tightrope representatives will also discuss how advanced Carousel features like user permissions, built-in data integration, and scheduling of freshly-created content integrate seamlessly with BrightSign media players.

“With this integration, Carousel becomes the centralized platform that incorporates all users, content, channels, zones, scheduling and third-party data integration into a single common interface that is easy to use,” said Eric Henry, Signage Solutions Lead, Tightrope Media Systems. “BrightSign users can take advantage of these comprehensive, advanced features in Carousel to build more dynamic content, while retaining the affordable, reliable BrightSign media players they trust.”

About BrightSign
BrightSign, LLC is the market leader in digital signage players. Based in Los Gatos, California, the company develops products, software and networking solutions for digital signage. BrightSign solid-state digital sign controllers set new standards for both stand-alone and networked digital signage applications with their superior video quality, reliability, affordability, ease of use and interactivity. Online information about BrightSign units is available at www.brightsign.biz. For US sales inquiries, please contact sales@brightsign.biz or call +1-408-852-9263. For European sales inquiries, please email Pierre Gillet: pgillet@brightsign.biz or call +44-1223-911842. Follow BrightSign at http://twitter.com/brightsign and http://www.facebook.com/BrightSignLLC.

About Tightrope Media Systems
Founded in 1997, Tightrope Media Systems is the pioneer of web-centric digital signage and broadcast automation systems. It provides station automation, video servers, Internet video on demand, live streaming, the Carousel Digital Signage system, and ZEPLAY, a multi-channel instant replay machine for stadiums, arenas and Outside Broadcast vehicles. Tightrope’s award winning systems are used throughout the world. You can reach Tightrope Media Systems at (866) 866-4118 or visit them on the web at http://www.trms.com.

# # #

Barix Introduces Next-Generation In-Store Radio Solution

SoundScape delivers comprehensive management and audio playout solution to help retailers, businesses efficiently engage consumers

ZURICH, SWITZERLAND, January 29, 2014Barix has long been a global provider of in-store radio solutions, bringing value to retail shops and other businesses through brand awareness, consumer engagement and revenue generation. The introduction of SoundScape, its next-generation in-store radio solution, positions Barix as a technology leader in the retail market, helping businesses enhance flexibility and fuel new business opportunities from an advanced yet easy-to-use platform.

SoundScape is a comprehensive solution to manage audio distribution over IP networks, offering a centralized management portal and audio players at multiple locations. Music service providers can efficiently power in-store radio networks with SoundScape, using the portal to manage, configure, group and monitor SoundScape audio players and device status network-wide. SoundScape also enables content scheduling through built-in software, or allows service providers to use custom scheduling solutions.

Barix previously offered live streaming and Store and Play programs as separate applications, each available via software downloads for its IP audio encoders and decoders. SoundScape supports both applications on the same device, allowing retailers to switch between live feeds and stored playlists that play back at scheduled times. Both applications support targeted, location-based advertising insertions that seamlessly fade in and out of music programs.

The network-wide management capabilities of SoundScape further reduces costs and complexity by enabling customers to remotely deliver firmware updates, create and monitor logs, and track play reports for sponsors. This takes the onus off content providers who previously used in-house or third-party monitoring solutions to perform such services. Retailers can also integrate SoundScape with music suppliers to minimize licensing costs.

“Businesses of all kinds, including many retail chains, have long used Barix in-store radio solutions to deliver live streams and file-based playlists to stores and locations,” said Guggenheim. “SoundScape retains the core Barix competency of efficiently and reliably moving audio across IP networks, while introducing new features that will ultimately help businesses create better brand awareness, improve the shopping experience and increase basket size as part of their omni-channel strategies.”

SoundScape additionally provides value through an ability to target content across the network. The end-to-end architecture ensures that businesses can group devices to receive specific ads, other languages or completely different programs – whether by location, by department or otherwise.

The ability to switch between live streams and stored playlists brings additional flexibility. Retailers can take advantage of true, dynamic ad insertions within live, branded radio programs for part of the day, and switch to stored content at busier shopping times to preserve network bandwidth. The Store and Play application otherwise allows retailers to switch to special, customized playlists for holidays, events and local store promotions. To the latter point, retailers can easily take advantage of system flexibility to insert special ads for real-time promotion of price drops and other in-store specials.

Barix will demonstrate the complete solution in simulated retail environments at ISE 2014, taking place February 4-6 at the RAI Exhibition Centre in Amsterdam (Stand 8-E275); and one week later at Digital Signage Expo (Booth 1716), taking place February 12-13 at the Sands Convention Center.

Barix: We Move Audio (www.barix.com)
Barix supplies simple and reliable solutions and components to systems integrators and end users worldwide. We move high-quality audio across IP networks, adding value to customer solutions for more than a decade with hundreds of thousands of devices installed worldwide. Background music distribution with dynamic advertising insertion for retail shops, bars and hotels; public address solutions for schools and public spaces; and intercom and entry systems for facility surveillance, protection and security are among the many applications of Barix solutions. Barix also supports OEM projects for a number of Global 500 listed companies serving many industries worldwide.

# # #

Barix AG, Seefeldstrasse 303, 8008 Zurich, Switzerland
Phone: +41 43 43322 11, Fax: +41 44 2742849
Barix Technology Inc, St. Paul, MN – (866) 815-0866

http://www.barix.com

http://www.ip-audio.info

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