Visions brings four-truck solution to World Snooker Championship

The World Snooker Championship moves into the semi-final stage at the Crucible Theatre in Sheffield today (2 May), with live coverage on BBC2, BBC2 HD, red button services and Eurosport. Crews from outside broadcast company Visions are now re-rigging equipment in the main auditorium as one of the two tables used during the earlier stages is removed ready for each semi-final to take alternate centre stage.

This is Vision’s second year in a three-year contract covering the World Championship. The company has four vehicles on site for the duration: HD1 is providing the majority of the broadcast infrastructure, as well as being the production centre for coverage of Table 1; multipurpose unit Voyager 2 was used on Table 2 up to and including the quarter finals, supplying audio and vision mixers plus routing to supplement HD1, and will now work on the green room and client areas at the Crucile; Voyager 1 is being used for editing; and HD9 is the BBC presentation vehicle.

During the two table coverage, with the two sides of the auditorium divided by a central wall that is lowered into place from the ceiling, each has identical facilities, with an average of nine cameras (Sony HDC-1500s), the only difference being that only one table will feature the HawkEye shot tracking system. Also on the graphics side the commentators – most of whom are former players – have access to a telestrator so they can superimpose possible shots on to the screen for the benefit of viewers while the player in action is thinking about what to do.

Visions engineering manager Kevin Orwin explained that to get closer to the action pocket camera were installed on each table in the two end pockets closest to the black ball spot. A hot head is positioned over the pink spot, with a second giving a side-on view of the table.

As well as live coverage on BBC2 and BBC HD, two feeds are sent to the BBC red button, while another two go to Eurosport 2.

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