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Qvest equips German public broadcasters for the Winter Games in South Korea

When the Winter Games opened in Pyeongchang on February 9, 2018, the technical departments of ARD, ZDF, and Qvest collaboratively established the technical foundation for 230 hours of live broadcast. Qvest provided the broadcasters with state-of-the-art AV, IT, and media technology to set up a temporary connected live production platform at the International Broadcast Center (IBC) in Pyeongchang and the National Broadcast Center (NBC) in Leipzig.

A particular challenge was the very short planning and lead time. Qvest had less than four weeks after the project was awarded to coordinate technical details, plan the deployment, and make logistical arrangements for the delivery of system components. The equipment remained on-site after the Winter Games and was utilized for the broadcast of the global sports competitions for athletes with physical and intellectual disabilities in March 2018.

Fast production workflows, high data availability

ARD and ZDF, equipped by Qvest, have established a platform tailored specifically to the demands of live sports production and collaborative work.

A robust system architecture, fast and intuitive production workflows, as well as high data redundancy and availability were particularly crucial. Key components of the setup include live ingest and playout installation, a post-production environment with non-linear craft editing workstations for audio and video editing, a central storage system, and multiviewer systems for production control, along with transcoder engines for format conversion.

Turnkey system for real-time graphics

Qvest also provided a turnkey system for real-time graphics. Central ingest, highlight editing, and playout were carried out through an EVS installation, comprising EVS IP Director, XT Access Ultra High Performance Systems, and 25 EVS XT production servers with multicam software. To enhance production capacity, Qvest invested in four new EVS systems of the XT4K generation, expanding its pool of live production servers from this manufacturer.

Non-linear editing stations

Ahead of the Winter Games, Qvest delivered a comprehensive Avid Interplay system to ZDF for permanent integration into the German broadcaster's Mobile Production Unit (MPU). File ingest into the Avid environment is facilitated through XT Access from the EVS network, allowing production teams to import and deploy video material via Avid Interplay. The material can be accessed and edited by eight non-linear editing stations equipped with Media Composer workstations before being transferred to the EVS playout server via Interplay Transfer.

Seamless workflows between South Korea and Germany

As in previous comparable international sporting events, Qvest provided system components based on state-of-the-art AV, IT, and media technology. These components enable a seamless production workflow for both broadcasters between Pyeongchang in South Korea and Leipzig in Germany. Furthermore, Qvest temporarily expanded the MPU with AVID NEXIS E4 Engines, providing a total storage of 360 TB.

To further optimize the file-based workflow between audio and video editing, ZDF chose an integrated Avid solution. For the Winter Games, the broadcaster was equipped for the first time with Pro Tools HD and an Avid S6 console for voice synchronization and film sound editing. Alongside equipment for image production, monitoring, controlling, and a Riedel Artist Digital Matrix Intercom platform, high-end systems for graphic processing were part of the setup. Vizrt tools, Viz Artist and Viz Trio, were used to create real-time graphic elements within the reporting process. They accessed a fully redundant graphic hub. Video signals were distributed using the latest generation of 3067VIPX Multiviewer systems. Since the production environment in South Korea operates at 60 Hz, Qvest provided Alchemist and Kudos Highspeed Format Converters from SAM.

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