Chelmsford, Massachusetts – Broadcast Pix™ today announced Newton Media Center (NewTV), the Emmy Award-winning community media center serving Newton, Mass., upgraded its City Hall meeting coverage last spring with a new Mica 500 integrated production switcher. The PEG (public, education, government) operation was recently provided with three HD channels by RCN, and now provides full HD coverage of its city council meetings.
Housed in what literally used to be a coat closet, the City Hall control room is built around a rack designed for a production van, with the Mica’s control panel attached to a flip-up shelf. Steve Russo, NewTV director of operations, said it was a challenge to find both a comfortable console for the operator and equipment that would fit in the very small workspace.
Access AV, a systems integrator based in Concord, N.H., removed the old gear and installed the new system over three days in late May in time for NewTV’s coverage of the June 5 city council meeting. The Mica, which replaced an aging Edirol analog switcher and Compix CG, is also used to control three new Panasonic PTZ cameras.
Large windows in the Council Chambers change the lighting throughout evening meetings, but Russo said the Mica makes it easy to adjust camera irises on the fly as the night gets darker. “That panel is quite robust and works perfectly with the Panasonic cameras,” Russo explained. “With the joystick, we can even get creative with on-camera moves.”
A 24-inch Vizio LED TV in the control room is used to monitor the live cable feed. If the director needs to update graphics during a meeting, one of the Mica’s outputs connected to the TV’s HDMI input allows it to be used as a second multi-view. Typical city council graphics include a main slate, lower-thirds, and a bug with the meeting date, but Russo plans to add more graphics for future coverage.
Additional Mica outputs could be used to provide live feeds to the City Hall War Memorial Auditorium as well as conference rooms across the facility. NewTV records a clean feed of the proceedings to an AJA Ki Pro for news broadcasters and the on-air version with full graphics to an Atomos Samurai Blade for replays.
The City Hall install is not NewTV’s first Broadcast Pix system. A Granite 6000 integrated production switcher anchors the control room at the separate facility where the NewTV team has been producing original HD programming for years. An older Broadcast Pix system is also in place at the Newton Education Center for coverage of school meetings.
After more than two months of meeting coverage produced with the new Mica, Russo said the response to the HD upgrade has been very positive. “The quality jumped immensely. People love it, and the city is very happy with it,” he added. “Broadcast Pix was my first choice, there was no question about it. It simply works the best for our needs.”
About Broadcast Pix Founded in 2002, Broadcast Pix provides integrated live video production switchers with the best control. From compact mobile units to large-scale solutions, every Broadcast Pix features patented control and automation technology that make it easy to optimize and customize your workflows. With customers in more than 100 countries, Broadcast Pix is the leader in totally integrated production switchers for broadcast, streaming, live event, and visual radio applications. Its BPNet ioGates media management products are used by leading broadcasters and production houses. Learn more at www.broadcastpix.com.
Broadcast Pix and Mica are trademarks of Broadcast Pix, Inc. Patented. Switchers are made in USA.