Sweden’s Aftonbladet raises online news production standards with Sony cameras
Aftonbladet, one of the Nordic region’s most popular daily newspapers, has strengthened its appeal to online audiences by investing in Sony cameras and Bravia displays at its video production facilities in Stockholm.
Aftonbladet’s reputation as a print publisher stretches back almost 200 years. While not a ‘broadcaster’ in the traditional sense, the title is a significant player in today’s multiplatform news space, where online video represents an essential strand in many newspaper publishers’ offerings.
As part of its ongoing digital transformation, Aftonbladet’s recently refurbished main studio in Stockholm now features eight Sony BRC-H800 PTZ remote cameras that are used to support daily news programme production. Capturing full HD images, the cameras are networked via IP, allowing an operator in the control room to adjust exposure, picture settings and other parameters. Camera management over IP is via Sony’s RCP-3500 remote control panel, which offers intuitive operation via physical knobs, assignable switches and a joystick controller. The eight PTZ cameras are supplemented in the main studio by a Sony HDC-P1 compact system camera. The P1 also affords Aftonbladet extra flexibility to use interchangeable bayonet-mount lenses.
The Stockholm production facility also houses a smaller secondary ‘pod studio’ that’s used for more intimate podcast-type shows, typically with a presenter chatting informally to a guest. Also controlled remotely over IP, five compact Sony BRC-X400 PTZ cameras in the pod studio capture professional-quality 4K images.
Video monitoring of camera images from both studios in the main control room is via a wall of eight 49” Bravia 4K professional displays. Slim, light and featuring Sony’s latest picture processing technologies, the Bravia screens allow Aftonbladet to critically evaluate images from multiple cameras with significantly lower hardware cost than investing in broadcast-quality reference monitors.
“While upgrading our news production facilities we looked at different remote studio camera solutions,” commented Vasilios Hatciliamis, head of TV operations at Aftonbladet. “What we needed alongside the ease of remote operation over IP, was a good picture performance. What’s more, remote operation means we can minimise crewing requirements in both studios, a bonus for socially distanced production.”