IDX CW-F25 two-way wireless HD-SDI transmitters form the communications core of a remotely controlled video capture system recently completed for Cricket Ireland. Each transmitter is configured to carry data from a compact control unit to a remote television camera with an integrated motorised pan/tilt/zoom head. Full 1080i high definition video is simultaneously carried back from the cameras to a Panasonic AW-HS50 production mixer.
"We needed a system which would allow us to stream live television coverage of matches over the internet while also benefiting our performance analysis for the players," comments Cricket Ireland coach Peter Johnston. "A vital requirement was the freedom to place cameras at any location without worrying about power supply cables or signal feeds.
"After surveying the available sources, we approached D+P Multimedia Products Ltd who specialise in providing all leading broadcast equipment brands. They designed a complete solution for us based on Panasonic AWHE40S compact pan/tilt/zoom cameras. Video is fed back wirelessly from each camera to the control suite. The production equipment is housed in two flight cases and includes video monitors, a network switch plus a live streaming interface.
"The system is reliable, easy to learn and very efficient to operate. The IDX transmitter and Panasonic camera combination gives excellent quality high definition video in any lighting levels cricket would be played in, as well as night mode if that were ever required."
"We recommended and installed IDX CW-F25 transmitters which are fully up to the standard needed for high quality on air video contribution," adds Tommy McManus, technical sales manager at D+P Multimedia Products. "They have proved very reliable and are fully certified for licence-free use throughout Europe. Transmission range is more than sufficient for the distance required in cricket coverage. It is enhanced by the use of beam-forming technology operating over 4 x 4 MIMO channels. Adaptive variable bit rate ensures stable output under all signal conditions.
"All control, production mixing and monitoring equipment is housed in two Gator wheeled 10U flight cases which operate from AC mains. Each of the portable racks is fitted with power, video and network distribution along with slide out shelves and equipment boxes.
"Each camera is enclosed in a Dotworkz outdoor housing with custom power distribution, mounted to a portable mast which can be raised to a height of over 7.5 metres. This is a seriously strong custom-made aluminium pump-up pneumatic telescopic mast with a fully integrated tripod. It has a huge 59 mm top tube and extra thick 101mm base tube making it an exceptionally strong and portable mast that packs down in to a portable case.
"The Panasonic AWHE40S camera is connected to an IDX CW-F25 transmitter. Camera and transmitter are powered by a custom made Pelicase with six V-Lok plates wired in parallel plus IP rated waterproof connectors and six IDX CUE-D150 rechargeable batteries per mast. The batteries provide ample energy capacity to allow an entire match to be televised between charges.
"Network signals from a Panasonic AW RP50 remote controller are transmitted via the outbound link of the IDX CW-F25 to the two Panasonic cameras. Each camera is a complete one-piece head with a motorised 30 times optical zoom lens and integrated pan and tilt plus a preset memory capable of storing up to 100 positions. The camera operator can remotely guide the head through a +/- 175 degree pan range and -30 to +90 degrees of vertical tilt.
"The IDX CW-F25 transmitters simultaneously carry H.264 High Profile video back to the Blackmagic Duo video source monitors and a Panasonic AW-HS50 vision mixer which allows live mixing from both masts along with inputs from other local sources. A third Blackmagic Smartview HD monitor is configured for programme and preview multiviewing. A combined video and audio output feed is then sent to a Blackmagic Ultra Studio Express interface which encodes the live output stream on a Apple MacBook Pro using Telestream Wirecast Pro to send out to the web. Each of the two CW-F25 Transmitters supports return video, intercom, tally, RS422 remote and Ethernet networking, giving the remote camera operator the full features of a wired link. The system includes an IDX VL4S battery charger plus 12 IDX CUE-D150 146 watt-hour high-grade Lithium Ion V-Mount batteries."