IBC 2019: Grass Valley makes noise in Amsterdam with software announcements and debut of GV Pace

Grass Valley (stand 9.A01) has not been quiet at this year’s IBC, with multiple enhancements to their software solutions and a new technological alliance.

GV Pace
Grass Valley will introduce its new automation-assisted manual control system for fast-paced, dynamic, live unscripted production, GV Pace, at IBC 2019. GV Pace allows a single operator to manage a production with increased efficiency, less disruption, better viewer engagement and, most importantly, without any sacrifice to production quality. It offers the freedom and flexibility of an easy-to-use touchscreen interface and combines all the proven production automation tools from Grass Valley’s award-winning Ignite solution, empowering production teams to direct the most demanding, dynamic live programming. The system is offered without the requirement of a Newsroom Computer System and is ideal for a range of applications, from news and sports/esports to enterprise and studio platforms.

Packaged as a subscription solution, GV Pace integrates both Grass Valley and third-party devices natively – for minimal disruption to existing workflows – allowing a single operator to orchestrate the solution to deliver a professional look and feel. Highly intuitive and requiring minimal training, GV Pace streamlines unscripted workflows and puts power and control in the hands of the operator, while reducing the risk of operational mistakes. GV Pace’s smooth UI can be tailored to a specific live event or show, and in-app configuration for events and modules ensures efficiency and consistency across all productions.

This solution delivers best-in-class audio support and can control a wide range of consoles, including Wheatstone, Yamaha, Lawo, Calrec, Studer, and SSL, without a dedicated audio operator.

Peter Semerak, vice president, production, Grass Valley commented: “GV Pace has been designed for resource-constrained, manual live production applications where every second counts – such as breaking news, OTT-only live productions and college sports. In applications that don’t require integration with a Newsroom Computer System, GV Pace makes complex operations simple. A single operator can use this solution to execute a high quality, multi-layered, professional show.”

Fast and easy to deploy, GV Pace is also provides flexible event templates that deliver a 50 percent time savings and can be changed dynamically within seconds before a show goes live or on-the-fly during the show for added flexibility. The system can also be used in a secondary control room to support automation-assisted manual control of broadcasts via a common, familiar interface.

Successful JT-NM Test 
Grass Valley has reiterated its position as an industry pioneer in open standards-based IP with successful testing of a range of solutions for the SMPTE ST 2110 standard for essence-based transport of media over IP. During the recent Joint Task Force on Networked Media’s JT-NM SMPTE ST 2110 round of tests, administered by the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) and Institut für Rundfunktechnik (IRT),Grass Valley demonstrated interoperability and alignment with SMPTE ST2110 standards across its XIP-3901-UDC-IP agile processor, IPVU monitoring gateway,K-Frame X video production center and Kaleido IP multiviewer solutions , ensuring they are easier to deploy and operate, and deliver greater efficiencies for broadcasters.

As a frontrunner in open standards-based IP, with more deployments than any other vendor, the successful testing of its solutions underscores Grass Valley’s leadership in driving the industry’s transition to IP. The JT-NM SMPTE ST2110 program aims to highlight how vendor equipment conforms to key parts of SMPTE’s ST2110 and ST2059 standards, giving customers and end users greater insight when undertaking their own equipment evaluation and qualification processes.

Mike Cronk, vice president, core technology, Grass Valley commented: “As the leader in delivering open IP capabilities from glass to glass, successfully passing through the JT-NM Tested Program for both SMPTE ST 2110 and JT-NM TR-1001-1 provides our customers with the added confidence that when they purchase solutions from us they are getting strong IP interoperability consistent with industry-agreed open standards and the AIMS roadmap – which, as a founding member, we are committed to driving forward. Grass Valley is very bullish on the new JT-NM TR-1001-1 specification because it will be pivotal in enabling broadcasters to streamline and simplify their IP deployments, delivering the agile, scalable and flexible infrastructures and workflows needed to build successful media businesses for today and tomorrow. We are proud that Grass Valley products performed so well in this inaugural JT-NM Tested event for the TR-1001-1 specification and encourage all to view the public results.”

Results of the test program are published in a dedicated JT-NM Tested Catalog available at the IP Showcase during IBC 2019 – successful vendors will also be able to display the JT-NM Tested badge on their booth.

Grass Valley Technology Alliance
The Grass Valley Technology Alliance (GVTA) is seeing significant growth, the company announces today, with new members joining to bolster collaborative relationships across the industry and deliver key benefits for customers. The GVTA, launched in April 2019, gives broadcasters and media companies’ access to a wide range of systems and solutions that result from integrations with Grass Valley workflow components. Visitors to the Grass Valley IBC 2019 booth will have the opportunity to see a dedicated area showcasing a selection of current GVTA members: Frankly Media, Net Insight, RT Software, and Telemetrics.

The dedicated GVTA area will also host member, Frankly Media, the leading lens-to-screen digital platform, which will be highlighting a combination of components that streamline the digital publishing and monetization workflow. “This alignment with Grass Valley is a key initiative for Frankly Media, establishing our organization as a peer to one of the best-known technical platforms in the industry,” commented Stephen Bach, senior vice president, business development, Frankly Media.

Net Insight, will showcase remote production capabilities based on Nimbra transport solutions in the GVTA-dedicated area of Grass Valley’s booth. Marcus Sandberg, vice president, marketing and communications, Net Insight commented: “We believe the GVTA establishes an ecosystem of partners with the successful track records and the expert competencies needed for the future of remote production. Open and broad-spectrum industry collaboration is fundamental if our customers are to focus more on their core business and less on the cost and complexity of the technology.”

RT Software – GVTA member and provider of leading broadcast graphics solutions – will be on Grass Valley’s booth highlighting the tight integration of its graphics technology into Grass Valley products. Mike Fredriksen, commercial director, RT Software added: “The GVTA formalizes an excellent working relationship that spans many years and will make it easier for RTSW to work with Grass Valley, its partners and end user customers to deliver high quality services.”

Also being featured within the GVTA area is Telemetrics, the leader in high end camera robotics for broadcast customers worldwide. David Workman, director of sales, Telemetrics commented: “The GVTA will provide end-to-end systems that seamlessly work together. Having integrated, pre-qualified solutions and standardized configurations means customers will be able to reduce their deployment costs and risk. We look forward to building on our existing business relationship with Grass Valley, and to seeing a lot of innovative technology come out of the GVTA that serves a much wider base of users.”

ChyronHego, a global leader in broadcast graphics creation, playout and real-time data visualization joins the GVTA to empower customers to choose best-of-breed solutions. Todd Martin, vice president, corporate strategy and business development, ChyronHego said of joining the alliance: “The GVTA is a collection of well-defined, pre-vetted solutions for our customers, that are easy to deploy, easy to use and fully supported. Bringing together industry-leading companies with a core focus of solving problems for our customers propels us all forward.” ChyronHego will be based on Stand 7.C21 throughout IBC 2019.

Tim Shoulders, president, Grass Valley added, “We are proud to bring such a dynamic range of companies together in the GVTA. Through this alliance, we provide additional value for Grass Valley customers, giving them access to solutions that complement our portfolio and are integrated at the development level to ensure interoperability. We have received a lot of interest in the GVTA from many companies, so we’re confident the benefits will continue to grow and our customers will enjoy a broader solutions portfolio and a simpler purchasing experience.”

India’s Network18
Network18, one of India’s largest media groups, has deployed Grass Valley’s highly flexible and scalable iTX integrated playout platform to underpin the transition to a standardized playout model across all its facilities. The solution was chosen for its proven future-proof features, and enables the Mumbai-based company to manage and operate multiple playout channels – across multiple platforms – with greater scalability, flexibility and efficiency.

Network18 operates a large mix of news and entertainment channels in addition to multiple digital products of the biggest names in media, such as News18 Network, CNBC-TV18, CNN News18, Colors, MTV, Moneycontrol, Firstpost and Forbes India. To meet the needs of the fast changing and rapidly growing market, the organization needed an agile solution capable of handling large-scale integrated playout and over 25 formats and resolutions natively, from SD to 4K UHD, managing content natively as SDI baseband as well as IP, without additional transcoding. Grass Valley’s iTX solution is a highly advanced, integrated playout platform for broadcast television, delivering IP/SDI flexibility and scalability for future readiness, along with end-to-end workflow tools for greater process automation and lower OPEX.

Rajat Nigam, Group Chief Technology officer, Network18 commented: “We at Network18 constantly explore and evaluate newer technologies and solutions aligned with our business objective of value leadership. We look towards standardizing the technologies across our group and implement cost-effective solutions and workflows to meet the demand for real-time access to news and entertainment, anywhere, on any device, in the fast emerging digital world. Our system design has always adhered to the fundamental principles of flexibility, reliability and versatility that enables us to easily add more channels, deliver services to online and social platforms or support 4K UHDTV content compatible with today’s multi-platform distribution environment. Working with a technical partner that can provide the tools and expertise to meet these demands and deliver the flexibility, scalability and future-proofing we need to evolve our business is critical to getting the system that is right for us. Based on techno-commercial in-depth evaluation, we made the choice for the iTX system from Grass Valley.”

Grass Valley’s iTX platform delivers an intuitive multipurpose operator interface that provides end-to-end workflow tools, such as file and lines ingest, asset management and preview functions. The Network 18 team gains all the functionality needed, from high-end graphics to subtitling, SCTE, and voice over (VO), in one flexible platform. Network18 also deployed GV ION storage that ensures reliability across applications from playout to news production.

Farzin Najmi, vice president, broadcast technology and operations, CNBC-TV18 added: “In a rapidly evolving market, tools that are robust, easy to deploy, intuitive and future-ready are essential to staying ahead of the curve. Working with partners that have the right expertise and technical know-how, both during integration phase and post commissioning support, is also critical, and we look forward to a long-term partnership of Network18 and Grass Valley.”

Network18 has already gone live with more than 36 channels with iTX, with full migration slated for completion by the end of 2020. This is part of a facility consolidation as all locations pan-India will be brought to a central location having standardized technology solution using iTX.

“Broadcasters increasingly have to address a wide range of digital OTT platforms in addition to traditional linear services,” said Somu Patil, vice president of sales, APAC, Grass Valley. “Our iTX solution is a workhorse for large-scale integrated playout, encompassing file/live IP/SDI playout, captioning/subtitling, audio processing and graphics branding. The system also enables Network18 to deliver services across multiple platforms without the need for separate encoding. We are proud to have expanded our partnership with Network18 and to help the company meet its business needs today and in the future.”

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