A report from the StreamUK Production Team


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A report from the StreamUK Production Team
In 2011 StreamUK grew by an astonishing 45%, expanding its European branches as well as the size of its UK office. The production team have been kept even busier during the start of 2012, as they look to break their previous record of 105 premium webcasts in 12 months.
In 2011 we celebrated helping our clients with over one hundred webcasts, not bad for a department that was only started in the spring of 2008. Now as one of the most exciting summers in British broadcast history approaches, we’ve been keeping the momentum. The key to our success is in our ethos, out of all of the events we’ve done over the years there isn’t a perfect event, we’re equally proud of all of them. We’ve enjoyed putting most of them together, but as we drive back in our trusty Ford Transit we’re always discussing the possibility of taking things further and making the user experience that little bit more unique.
Our strategy has always been to provide broadcast quality for a webcasting price tag. It sounds like every webcasters sales pitch… The difference at StreamUK is that it didn’t start with the sales team it started with the technicians on the road. We hire broadcasters and then get them to be technically creative. This is why our reputation has grown year on year, equipment is great but a detail oriented mind that is keen to work on the very edge of the limits of technology is the deciding factor.
Already in 2012 we’ve done some great jobs. We were underneath the stage at the Royal Albert Hall pushing out Florence and the Machine; allowing the audience to select their own angles without the need for their player to re-buffer. We oversaw a live link from the top of Mount Everest back to a studio in London for Glenfiddich.
Of course we could have the best minds in the world (we’re pretty sure we do!) without investing in the right equipment though they’d be sitting idle. Generally speaking we rent cameras, we buy engineering. It’s been a catch phrase of ours for a while. With the upcoming Olympics though and a shortage of cameras in London we decided to get a Sony EX-1R, ensuring that we can keep operating day or night and at very short notice.
The Sony EX-1R has a few features that we really love. The biggest factor for us was the SxS workflow, when we went tapeless in early 2010 we quickly realised that picking the right workflow was a critical decision that we’d be either loving or regretting for years to come. With the XDCAM workflow on SxS cards it was love at first sight… or at least love at first ingest. We’ve quickly moved entirely solid state.
The next big thing for us was the HD-SDI output on BNC… We’ve played with lots of cameras. Using them in a variety of situations… however we are almost always webcasting live to the web. Having a good solid connection that is easily repaired in the field was critical.
Form factor played a role in our decision to go with the EX-1R as well. We work far and wide, from Kansas to Qatar. Sometimes on very short notice. We wanted a camera that we could fit into the same bag as our encoders so we can hop on the next plane out if needed. Also we’ve got 2 years of using the EX-1R’s behind us we know them inside and out, we know how rugged they are.
So we broke our rule… We bought a camera! Then again it’s another reason why we’re so busy: we’re known for broadcast quality and flexibility.

Tags: iss066 | streamuk | streaming | N/A
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