Q&A: Peter Pörs discusses latest deployment of Jünger Audio’s Smart Audio concept
SVG Europe recently carried the news that Sky Deutschland has become the latest broadcaster to adopt Jünger Audio’s Smart Audio concept after specifying the company’s D*AP audio processing units for its new sports programming broadcast centre in Unterföhring, near Munich.
Known as the Cube, Sky Deutschland’s new centre is scheduled to open in 2017 and will comprise two studios of 600 sqm and 250 sqm, plus an additional new surface of 250 sqm for Bundesliga coverage. There will also be rooms for direction, editing and production, as well as for continuity suites and the broadcast IT installation. When it is completed, the Cube will be one of the largest and most modern broadcast IT infrastructures for live sports production in Europe and will create more than 40 full-time jobs.
Jünger Audio’s D*AP products were chosen for this prestigious installation because every device incorporates a collection of sophisticated adaptive processing algorithms that enable them to deliver a Smart Audio experience. With D*AP, broadcasters can dispense high quality sound in a highly efficient manner, with minimal requirement for manual control or intervention from an operator. The processors employ the industry standard Ember+ remote protocol that allows seamless integration with an increasingly wide range of compatible equipment. They also support Audinate’s Dante digital media networking technology, which enables them to interface with Audio Over IP networks just by plugging in a single cable.
Working in conjunction with Qvest Media, which is responsible for the turnkey, technological construction of Sky Deutschland’s new centre, Jünger Audio has supplied two D*AP CODEC Edition 8-channel surround processors and two D*AP FLX 8-channel surround processors, all of which have SDI and Dante interfaces. These will be used to decode Dolby from incoming feeds so that channel shuffling and mix preconditioning can be applied to individual national feeds. In addition, Jünger Audio has supplied four D*AP TAP Edition 8-channel surround television audio processors, which will be used for loudness management and final Dolby E encoding. The entire audio processing system is controlled by eight XAP RMI universal remote control panels.
SVG Europe caught up with Jünger Audio CEO Peter Pörs to find out more about the trajectory of the project – and the broader outlook for Smart Audio…
When did you start talking to Sky about the project?
The first conversations were half a year ago. The first priority was the new UHD TV channels, which opened in October and are making use of Jünger Audio processors. Now the focus is shifting over to The Cube area, which will ultimately house 14HD channels as well as all the UHD channels.
Across the site, how many processors are we talking about here?
It is primarily the D*AP8 processors, and in total we are looking at around 40 units, so [it is a significant deployment]. In terms of [The Cube] I would expect the centre to start coming into use by the end of the first quarter or start of the second quarter next year. Audio will be transported by Dante and SDI, and the [new infrastructure] also includes technology from Riedel and Lawo, among others.
How would you describe the overall outlook for Smart Audio? Is the concept resonating with an increasingly wide audience?
Yes, it is definitely growing in profile. There have been a number of other notable deployments of Smart Audio, such as Input Media in London and the ARD Tagesschau TV prime time news service in Germany. We also have a number of other major projects on the horizon, so it’s clear that the concept is gaining ground. I think that’s because with broadcasters facing evermore demand for more content on more devices, the need for faster and more cost-effective workflows is at an all-time peak. At the same time broadcasters want to maintain quality and consistency across channels and platforms, and Smart Audio can really help with that.