CTV Outside Broadcast relies on RTS for 2013 British Open

ESPN was responsible for covering this year’s British Open golf tournament, which saw it partner up with CTV Outside Broadcast.

UK-based CTV has been an important part of the broadcast industry for over 30 years, and counts the BAFTA Awards, along with various NFL, cricketing and golfing events, among its past projects.

For the 2013 Open at Muirfield in Scotland, CTV provided several outside broadcast vehicles – and, for the first time, OMNEO network technology. “I have worked on a large number of major productions,” says Hamish Greig, CTV’s director of engineering, "but this was one of the most complex.

"We deployed, for example, 42 line and HD cameras, four remote heads on camera cranes and a flying camera. We were extremely impressed by the RTS+OMNEO combination. It provides a networking technology ideal for events like the Open Championship, offering as it does not only program transport but also system control at the same time, and it gave us the further advantage of being able to operate the keypanels in a remote session.”

Using OMNEO-capable RTS equipment, Greig et al were able to assure communications between the diverse and numerous individuals involved in providing the coverage.

The nerve centre of CTV’s communications set-up at Muirfield was an ADAM full-sized modular matrix intercom in a 128 configuration. This matrix, with 464-port capacity, is the flagship of RTS’ matrix range. Featuring redundant power supplies and controllers, the integrated MCII-e controller allows for simultaneous operation of up to 32 parallel AZEdit clients via Ethernet and/or RS-485.

The keypanels from RTS were linked via OMNEO, including models from the KP-32-CLD, KP-32 and KP-12-CLD series. The communication between the matrix and the keypanels was implemented using an RTS OMI card in the ADAM matrix, along with six RTS OKI cards in the keypanels.

The integration of an extra ADAM matrix via a TBX card enabled the creation of a unified but elaborate system with various technical options. RVON connections also assured the link with ESPN headquarters in Bristol (Connecticut, USA), which helped with the logistics, and improved the overall quality of the production. Two Cronus matrices on board OB1 were also integrated into the ADAM network through an analogue connection.

“The added flexibility and configuration options that OMNEO contributed were of decisive importance during this event,” Greig continued. “Take for example the keypanels – thanks to OMNEO, we were able to connect up to 20 keypanels in series. We were able to integrate each of them using fiber optics and Ethernet – via RJ45 connections – into the system. It worked perfectly and brought huge gains over previous years. The combination of equipment from RTS and OMNEO facilitated to an enormous extent the communications logistics.”

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