The Open 2015 Reflections: Calrec provides efficient audio routing for CTV and international broadcasters
By: David Davies
Thursday, October 22, 2015 - 9:34 am

At the 144th Open golf championship in July, CTV managed the entire infrastructure for all the broadcasters covering the tournament, and directly for the BBC, ESPN, TGC, TV Asahi and The Open Live for R&A. Having control of the whole frequency plan made it much easier as they could coordinate the frequencies for all users, and with an all-Calrec fleet the audio was locked down over Calrec’s Hydra2 routing solution.

Courses like St Andrews have permanent underground fibre networks which help with much of the setup, making the job of cabling much easier, although there was still plenty of surface cabling that needed to be laid amidst the puddles and mud. St Andrews has 25 nodes where CTV could plug I/O – 30 of Calrec’s Hydra2 I/O boxes were used at the Open, mostly on the course and connected by fibre. Again, the Hydra2 kept the management of these boxes simple and intuitive.

“Calrec’s new Fieldbox [small format I/O units’ and H2Hubs are interesting developments in that they provide another way to work with these infrastructures, where ad hoc networks can be built very quickly and cheaply, and power can be localised at the source,” says Calrec vice-president of sales Dave Letson.

Calrec in the compound

In the compound, the signals were mixed down by an all-Calrec fleet of consoles, and international broadcasters took all their feeds via MADI from CTV’sTechnical Operations Centre (TOC). The BBC, ESPN, ITV, TV Asahi, the Golf Channel and the Open Live for The R&A all took feeds from the TOC.

From the TOC, CTV used two hired Telegenic trucks for the BBC, both with Calrec Apollo desks for BBC domestic and ISO coverage, together with OB10 and MVT3 for Host coverage.

ESPN’s coverage was even more extensive. CTV’s OB9 (with a 72f Calrec Alpha) was deployed for ESPN’s Interactive TV coverage of the featured groups and the ISO effects. A 72f Artemis was deployed in a cabin to mix the main show, the OB1-equipped Artemis covered the ESPN SportsCenter show, and CTV’s OB14 with a Calrec Omega handled the R&A featured hole coverage. In total ESPN produced a SportsCenter show, a main sports show, interactive TV feeds, featured hole coverage and featured group coverage. Outside of the ESPN set-up there were more discreet productions going on – in fact, there were 13 discreet productions in total, utilising 16 separate production vehicles as well as a host of technical and cable support vehicles.

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