As the industry’s transition to IP is spreading wide and far, the need to mitigate complexity within new remote production and IP systems is also at the forefront - from the way an audio monitoring unit subscribes to multicast streams, and how these streams are displayed and handled on the front panels of the device, through replicating familiar workflows for operators within control system panels, regardless of the underlying technology. Production requirements are subjective and dynamic, making it a tedious decision for production houses to make the right investment in equipment and technology.
“The move to IP is driving the need to be able to control devices differently, moving to edge device control, which requires a whole new set of standards, and the need for interoperability. We focus on developing user interfaces and tools that allow customers to implement powerful functionality themselves. Since each company has its own workflow, users need to be armed with the knowledge to implement the full capabilities of the system, and to help engineers understand how it can be configured to assist with existing and future projects. Through empowering operators and engineers by giving them complete control of the system, their job becomes much easier,” commented Mark Davies, director, Product & Technology, TSL Products.
The industry needs solutions that provide added value to customers and allow them ease of operation. All whilst retaining the quality. “This philosophy means customers can move ‘beyond the box’ to maintain technical excellence and keep pace with the latest technologies and industry standards. Creating a user-focused experience, regardless of the advances in underlying technology, is paramount to customer satisfaction,” added Davies.
TECHNOLOGY TO SUPPORT
A major broadcaster in the U.S. used TSL Products’ control platform to provide remote access to their insert studios to other locations across the U.S. This allowed remote operators to take full creative control of the broadcast themselves, without having to rely on local staff to run their production. This enabled freeing up of a considerable amount of man-hours and utilise them elsewhere. The broadcaster casted Virtual Panel control surfaces for the studios, to the remote users. These included control of all devices that affect the creative portion of the production including lighting, robotic camera control, colour correction and graphics, while allowing the remote operator to access IFB. Local engineering staff configured the panels themselves; the operator focussed control surfaces provided them with engineering control surfaces to make their day-to-day activities quick and easy. This included allowing operators to modify protected default pre-sets and local routing, password protected to prevent unauthorised access.
TO THINK AND TREAD
Remote production is linked to the transition to an IP workflow. As one begins migration to IP, Davies advises on looking for partnerships. “Make sure you have your switch vendor, your broadcast supplier, and your system integrator, engaged early and use their resources. All these partners have experience and presale information that can help with the design, avoid common pitfalls, and make the deployment easier. End users need a partnership between switch manufacturers, broadcast vendors, and system integrators, so they can deliver a complete working system. The last thing they want is a vendor, a switch supplier, and systems integrator - all saying they have the best offerings yet assemble working bits that don’t form a working system. Partnerships give end users the confidence to move forward with new technology.”