South Africa’s Multichoice completes refurbishment of Studio 6

South African satellite television channel service provider Multichoice has successfully completed the infrastructure rebuild of its Studio 6, which is mostly utilised by SuperSport, a content brand under the Multichoice umbrella that specialises in live sports production across almost 40 linear channels.

The installation, carried out by local system integrator and Lawo supplier Inala Broadcast, comprises a vm-dmv-based Lawo V_matrix multiviewer solution and a Lawo mc²36 audio console combined with an A stage64 stage box and a Nova73 router.

In addition to the studio production audio workflows, the system interfaces into IP-based commentary booths to enable adding multiple languages into the IP audio backend. SuperSport’s overall infrastructure is controlled by an all-encompassing virtual studio manager (VSM) system which also controls 16 galleries used for turn-around operations of smaller events, adding the right logos in the right places.

“The migration of broadcast signal reticulation from traditional baseband to IP brings us new options in the way things are done, which required us to redefine the way we all (Multichoice Technical Team, Inala Broadcast, SuperSport operations and Lawo) install, configure and commission an audio system of this size and nature,” explained Multichoice’s Technical Team.

Anthony Theunen, Lawo’s system engineer, who configured the new Studio 6 setup and supervised the hand-over starting on 12 October, called Studio 6’s new audio infrastructure “an innovative small console-large router scenario”.

The configuration for the Multichoice studio in Randburg, Johannesburg was configured remotely from Theunen’s office in Belgium. For health and safety reasons during the COVID-19 pandemic, hardly anybody was allowed on-site for some time and even remote configuration operations were temporarily put on hold because no-one would have been available locally to reboot devices after an update or in the event of a programming issue.

Studio 6’s newly configured infrastructure is mainly used for incoming sports feeds, such as soccer, rugby and cricket, with all footage being transmitted to the presenters in charge of producing pre-match, half-time and post-match analyses.

Ralf Schimmel, Lawo’s sales director Africa & radio partners, added: “We are very grateful to our South African systems integration partner Inala Broadcast for their hard work and innovative solutions. This partnership has resulted in a cutting-edge infrastructure that provides SuperSport’s unrivalled operations with even more flexibility.”

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