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Texas Southern University Acquires ‘Granite 5000’ Control Center

The Granite 5000 allows students to bypass time consuming, tape-based workflows

Texas Southern University’s (TSU) School of Communication has added a Broadcast Pix Granite 5000 Video Control Center to its student control room as part of an equipment upgrade for the school to support HD and SD video production.

Located in Houston, TSU has about 9,500 students, and the School of Comm

unication offers broadcasting programs focused on radio, television and film. The control room serves as part of the school’s production laboratory, where sophomore, junior and senior students work with external producers to create content, according to TSU officials.

In the laboratory, the students produce a variety of projects, from news programs to short films, and much of the content is distributed through Comcast Cable’s on-demand portal, said Cliff Edwards, the School of Communication’s director of broadcast engineering. “It’s an excellent platform for our students,” he said.

Because projects are produced in both SD and HD, it was important that TSU invest in a video switcher that could handle both, according to Edwards. “The ability to go HD or SD, that was the goal,” he said. “I wanted something that was going to last and be state-of-the-art quality, and give students a leg up when they went into the real world.”

The Granite 5000 replaced an aging Echolab switcher and CG, and its built-in Fluent-View allowed the school to replace its cumbersome wall of CRT monitors with four Panasonic 42-inch flat panels. The students enjoy using the built-in Fluent Clip Store, which allows them to bypass time consuming, tape-based workflows, Edwards said. “Now, they can focus that time on putting packages together,” he added.

Because of the Granite 5000’s Fluent workflow tools, regular software upgrades, and modular expandability, Edwards “was sold on the product from day one,” he said. “It’s a wonderful tool. We wow the students, we wow visitors, and when we generate content, we wow the viewers.”