With COVID-19 dramatically changing the way television is produced, PSSI Global Services put its engineering and live event management expertise to the test to deliver a one-of-a-kind American Idol finale to viewers nationwide.
Due to social distancing measures and restrictions on large gatherings, the contestants and judges could not meet in one location for the finale. To meet this challenge, PSSI had transmission vehicles and engineers at the final contestants' homes across the country, as well as the homes of the judges and host, Ryan Seacrest.
Meanwhile, in Burbank, California, PSSI had its CK35 mobile teleport outside the production studio to receive all the remote feeds and send back the hosts to each location, as well as provide ABC with the network backhaul. All remote and return feeds were transmitted on three transponders of Eutelsat 113 West A, using PSSI International Teleport as a point of access for PSSI’s remote engineers.
To bring all these separate venues together into a cohesive show, PSSI collaborated with Nextologies to deploy Nextologies’ NXT-4 equipment to eight of the locations. This technology enabled the production team in Burbank to control each camera remotely by tunneling into the cameras via public internet.