Lined up: How Eurosport deployed Hitomi’s MatchBox for Winter Olympics
Eurosport, the pan-European sports broadcaster owned by Discovery, chose Hitomi’s MatchBox technology to ensure that live delivery of Olympic Winter Games coverage from PyeongChang was accurately lined up, succinctly combining video and audio.
Being the first broadcaster to hold all TV and multi-platform rights across Europe, excluding France 2018-2020, and Russia, Eurosport’s coverage served 48 markets in more than 20 languages. The challenge was that transmission of content from South Korea presented issues in ensuring lip-sync matched video, measuring circuit delays, and providing identification of audio feeds.
The solution was to install multiple MatchBoxes, which are a measurement system of audio and video alignment, in the IBC in PyeongChang. The kit would generate test signals, which MatchBox Analysers in European sites received.
One feature Eurosport found valuable during the Games was its text to speech synthesis. With commentaries available in so many languages, sound engineers needed a solid method of checking their configuration. MatchBox’s spoken identing system made that simple and efficient.
“With over 50 lines to check at once there isn’t time for the subjectivity of lining up by eye and ear,” said Richard Wardle, senior director of distribution engineering at Discovery. “The great advantage of MatchBox is speed and accuracy. Overall it was an excellent solution.”
MatchBox is a hardware and software solution housed in a 1RU frame.