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Sony Professional Solutions of America

Sony Professional Solutions of America develops and manufactures audio/video and information technology solutions for an array of applications including event videography, electronic cinematography, digital cinema, videoconferencing, non-linear editing, IP surveillance, digital signage, and remote system diagnostics and monitoring.
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Posted on Friday, August 7, 2009

Three Sports Venues Tied to Centralized Sony HD Control Room with HD Studio Cameras, and MFS-2000 Switcher; XDCAM HD and XDCAM EX Camcorders for EFP

PARK RIDGE, August 7, 2009 –


For the athletic department at Louisiana State University, making the decision to convert its video operations to high definition was easy. Putting the right technology and infrastructure in place was the challenging part. But the LSU team is overcoming the hurdles with a range of HD production equipment from Sony Electronics.

Working closely with Sony and system integrator Crescent Communications, LSU is building a new Sony-equipped HD control room that connects via fiber to the school’s football, basketball and baseball venues, and creates a centralized editing and video production facility

The need for an upgrade became even clearer when the athletic department purchased new HD LED video scoreboards for each venue, including the newly built baseball stadium that features a full complement of luxury suites.

"We had these beautiful new video boards, but we were still living in an analog world, feeding 4:3 signals to the HDTVs in our stadium’s suites," said Kevin Wagner, assistant athletic director for LSU Athletics. "It was obvious we needed to create greater compatibility between our production capabilities and the amenities in our stadiums."

The new HD control room has Sony HDC-1450 studio cameras, an MFS-2000 production switcher and LUMA® monitors. The Sony equipment will be used to capture

and produce video for playback during games on each venue’s LED screens and HD displays.

Additionally, LSU is using XDCAM® HD PDW-700 optical camcorders and the XDCAM EX PMW-EX3 compact camcorder. The XDCAM camcorders are used as "live" cameras" for home games, recording crowd shots, player and coaches interviews and other footage for in-game playback, pre-game ceremonies and halftime events, as well as a mix of pre-produced material.

The PDW-700 and PMW-EX3 also travel with the teams to road games, and the benefits have been significant, especially in terms of time saved while capturing and editing footage.

A perfect example was the 2009 College World Series, in Omaha, Neb., where the EX3 was used over the tournament’s 14 days to document LSU’s run to the championship.

"It really performed well for us," Wagner said. "We used it for interviews, to produce features and capture practice, and to record the on-field celebration after winning the national championship. The workflow is very smooth, from the camera to editing. It’s so easy to just pop out the card, put it in your laptop, and you’re ready to edit."

He added that with the NCAA rules prohibiting the use of long-lens shooting during games, the lens on the EX3 was perfectly up to the task of getting all the shots the department needed.

The video production team in LSU’s athletics department also handles the production of content for the school’s web site, and fulfills requests from local and national media for game footage. In addition, the department produces 42 weekly

coaches’ shows throughout the year for the football, men’s and women’s basketball, and baseball programs.

Using the XDCAM high-definition systems have resulted in increased image quality and a more efficient tapeless workflow, saving the team a significant amount of time when shooting content, editing and distributing footage, and allowing them to handle their workload more efficiently.

"We can edit on the road or on the plane back from an event, rater than waiting until we get back here and having to go tape-to-tape," Wagner said. "In Omaha, we were editing and putting together several features a day that went directly to our web site, for the 14 days we were there."

Between games, the LSU team also manages in-house video production for the university and for the web site, which is an area that has grown considerably in the past few years in terms of demand for high-quality content, he said.

The weekly shows are distributed over the LSU Web site, through a statewide TV network and a regional network that covers Louisiana and parts of Texas. The team is also responsible for archiving the school’s sports footage, recording all games to create an HD archive for future use.

The new control room and HD video technology is planned to be in place for the start of LSU’s 2009 football season and, according to Wagner, working with Sony has been invaluable.

"We relied on Sony to help us select the right cameras, switcher and monitors," he said. "They were able to identify our needs, give us a range of options and then support our decisions with an end-to-end solution."

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