Photo courtesy of The Wallace Center at RIT
SECAUCUS, NJ (February 1, 2010) â€“ Since 2003, the Rochester Institute of Technology (Rochester, NY), in partnership with Time Warner Cable and ESPN, has aired SportsZone, a weekly half-hour show that showcases the universityâ€™s athletic programs. In response to Time Warnerâ€™s request for more content, including live broadcasts of the schoolâ€™s Division 1 hockey games, RIT has built an HD broadcast trailer (a full production studio and the only one of its kind in upstate New York) that is outfitted with Panasonic P2 HD camcorders, field recorders and monitors.
The 24â€™ trailer carries five AG-HPX500 P2 HD shoulder-mount camcorders as main cameras, an AG-HPX170 P2 HD handheld for b-roll, four AJ-HPM110P P2 Mobile recorder/players for slow motion/instant replay and field production, two AG-HPG20 P2 Portable field recorders, an AJ-SD93 DVCPRO deck for backup tape recording, several LCD broadcast monitors for engineering and camera shading, and two 50-inch plasmas for multi-viewer walls.
â€œRIT stays in the forefront by continually upgrading facilities and infrastructure and this was evidenced by our move to HD production at ETC Production Services at the Wallace Center,â€? said James Bober, Chief Engineer, Production Services. â€œThe University went a step further in funding the HD mobile production unit to help market and promote our athletic programs. In keeping with RITâ€™s career-oriented education philosophy, the HD mobile unit was largely designed and built by students over a time frame of approximately five months.â€?
Bober explained that during games, three HPX500s are set up in full studio configuration and two are used handheld throughout the campusâ€™ Ritter Arena. Each of the camcorders is connected to the trailer using a Telemetrics Coax Link Camera Adapter, with an HD Fiber Link Base Station.
â€œWe could have purchased conventional studio camera systems, but the HPX500s were more affordable and provide a lot more functionality,â€? Bober said. â€œOur department is responsible for all primary production on campus, and we implement the HPX500s extensively for field work, such as shooting magazine pieces for SportsZone Live, and producing corporate promotions and advertisements for the University.â€?
â€œThe camcorders work equally well in a production or live environment,â€? he added. â€œDollar for dollar, the picture is phenomenal. Weâ€™ve been blown away by the image quality and overall performance.â€?
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Bober said that when the solid-state P2 HD camcorders record to P2 cards, the footage is edited in Final Cut Pro on up to 14 edit stations that run off an Xsan server.
â€œWe love the versatility of the P2 Mobiles,â€? Bober said. â€œWe often work with mixed formats, and the HPM100s deliver the flexibility of multi-format HD and SD recording, with the added benefit of up/down/cross and aspect conversion, which we use all the time. We also use them in the live sports broadcasts, when we install two P2 Mobiles off a DNF slo-mo controller for instant replays.â€?
In terms of Panasonic display products, RIT utilizes BT-LH80WU HD LCD monitors on Magic Arm mounts as color viewfinders for the HPX500s, BT-LH1760s as reference monitors, and the two 50-inch plasmas as a monitor wall that can be reconfigured for each event.
Bober noted that the HD mobile unit has been implemented beyond live sports, for instance to produce image magnification at graduations and university/corporate events.
â€œWhat makes our broadcast trailer special goes beyond state-of-the-art technology,â€? he said. â€œStudents are largely responsible for planning and building the trailerâ€”and for running the show during live broadcastsâ€”all of which gives them industry experience that is changing and molding their whole careers. What students learn in a classroom can only take them so far. What we provide is a down-to-earth application that gives them an edge.â€?
â€œRIT has been investing in Panasonic for more than seven years, and the price/performance of the companyâ€™s products, across the board, has been superb,â€? Bober continued. â€œWe strongly believe that Panasonic has been right on the money, from the start, with P2 as a solid-state production solution. Moreover, as my own background is in customer service within the broadcast industry (most recently as Thompsonâ€™s Director of Service and Support for North America), I tend to evaluate vendors to a higher standard: Panasonic has consistently been reliable and responsive in taking care of all our service needs.â€?
To view the RITâ€™s full SportsZone Live schedule, visit
Rochester Institute of Technology is a comprehensive university, specializing in professional and career-oriented education. Its cooperative education program is a hallmark of an RIT education and students have unmatched opportunities in experiential learning in some of the most sophisticated classroom, laboratory and studio facilities available on any campus. For more information, visit
About the HPX500
The AG-HPX500 teams the full production-quality of 2/3â€? 3-CCDs, DVCPRO HD, 4:2:2 sampling and independent frame encoding with the versatility of interchangeable lenses and the creativity of variable frame rates. Offering the highly popular features of the incredibly successful AG-HVX200 P2 HD hand-held camcorder but with many new enhancements, the 8.2-pound HPX500 features progressive 2/3â€? 3-CCDs that provide a larger light receiving area resulting in increased resolution and sensitivity, superb low-light performance and wide dynamic range. The HPX500 records in 32 high definition and standard definition formats, including 1080i and 720p in production-proven, 100 Mbps DVCPRO HD. The HPX500 records on removable P2 solid-state memory cards in 1080/60i, 50i, 30p, 25p and 24p; in 720/60p, 50p, 30p, 25p, and 24p; and in DVCPRO50, DVCPRO and DV. For more information on the HPX500, visit
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About the AJ-HPM110
The portable AJ-HPM110 P2 Mobile solid-state recorder/player is ideal for use in the field, in mobile vehicles or in the studio. It offers master quality recording and playback in a wide range of high definition formats, including 1080p (native), 1080i and 720p, and in standard definition. The ultra-reliable AJ-HPM110 records in independent-frame DVCPRO HD/50/25 and DV formats as well as master-quality, full-raster 1920 x 1080 AVC-Intra (with optional board), and is designed to work with virtually any professional camera system, from tape-based digital cameras to high-end cinema cameras with 1080/24PsF output (in full-raster 1920 x 1080 or 1280 x 720). The AJ-HPM110 delivers native 1080/24p recording, 1080/24PsF input/output, multiple frame rate recording, 24p pull-down removal as well as real-time playback of 720p variable frame rates for work with speed effects like over- and under-cranking. For more information about Panasonicâ€™s P2 Mobile products, visit
About Panasonic Broadcast
Panasonic Broadcast & Television Systems Co. is a leading supplier of broadcast and professional video products and systems. Panasonic Broadcast is a Unit of Panasonic Corporation of North America. The company is the principal North American subsidiary of Panasonic Corporation (NYSE: PC) and the hub of Panasonicâ€™s U.S. branding, marketing, sales, service and R&D operations. For more information on Panasonic Broadcast products, visit
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