A wide range of Sony products were deployed for MediaCorp's coverage of the SEA Games. Seen here is a studio at its broadcast centre complete with Sony's HDC-2400 3G multi format HD system camera.
In the recent SEA Games, Team Singapore was not the only team that surpassed expectations with a bumper harvest of Gold medals. MediaCorp, the host broadcaster and media partner of the 28th SEA Games also outperformed with its comprehensive High Definition and Digital coverage of this sporting extravaganza.
The SEA Games saw 11 countries compete in 36 sports. It was undoubtedly the biggest-ever event coverage undertaken in Singapore by MediaCorp.
With a diverse range of interests spanning television, radio, newspapers, magazines, digital and out-of-home media, MediaCorp has quickly become one of the most prominent and advanced media companies in Asia.
MediaCorp runs many of Singapore’s most popular TV channels including Channel 5, Channel 8, okto and Channel News Asia. It was an early embracer of High Definition and was one of the first in the region to implement a file-based workflow.
What made the 28th edition of the SEA Games especially significant for Singapore, was that the games coincided with the country’s 50th year of independence. It not only provided the perfect canvas for the country to promote regional friendship and peace, but also an ideal opportunity to showcase to the region and the world, the great strides Singapore has made as a young nation.
MediaCorp had two important objectives for the SEA Games: to unify the nation behind Team Singapore; and to ensure that its comprehensive High Definition coverage of the games reaches a wide spectrum of viewers – at home via its dedicated SEA Games channel, okto, as well as Channel News Asia plus daily updates on its other channels. Or by accessing the content digitally on whatever device they choose and whenever they want.
For the smooth coverage of the over 400 sporting events at the SEA Games, an International Broadcast Centre (IBC) was built close to the Singapore Sports Hub cluster of venues. The venue was used by all the major TV networks from the participating countries as well as independent sports channels.
MediaCorp pulled out all the stops and decided to build from scratch its very own two-storey broadcast centre within the IBC compound.
MediaCorp’s 2-storey facility was almost a mirror of the facilities available at its main studios at Caldecott Broadcast Centre.
MediaCorp’s dedicated SEA Games broadcast centre ensured efficient and seamless operational capabilities for its live coverage of events as well as ENG content.
To undertake such a massive project, MediaCorp chose Sony for its proven technology in supporting major sporting events across the world.
Among the wide range Sony products deployed by MediaCorp for its 28th SEA Games coverage included video switchers, Full HD LCD monitors, XDCAM™ system cameras and professional disc recorders.
Kin Boon Tong, Senior Principal Engineer, Production & Post Support, at MediaCorp Technologies explains the selection of Sony equipment for the SEA Games: “We selected Sony as a major provider due to their strong on-the-ground support. Sony sent their engineers to assist with the configuration and installation. They were also on stand-by to ensure operational readiness.
“Another advantage with choosing Sony was that our crew was already familiar with Sony equipment and workflow, both at our studios as well as OB vehicles.”
The 12-day event especially with the high number of live events covered by MediaCorp was not without its challenges. Besides the iconic Sport Hub and its supporting venues nearby, some events were also held at other venues across the island.
Adds Kin, “Besides getting feeds from different locations, we also used different equipment from various manufacturers. One of the key challenges faced was ensuring that the equipment was all integrated and working smoothly together. The MVS-6530 switcher’s intelligent tally functions were critical in overcoming this challenge.”
“Multiple on-air and recording tallies can be easily programmed on the switcher system. In MediaCorp’s case, the Sony switchers even integrated well with third-party multi-viewers, with no additional need for parallel tally.”
Concludes Kin, “The broadcast requirements for a sporting event of this size always increases the scope and complexity when it comes to coverage and distribution. With the eyes of the region on Singapore and the SEA Games, it was only prudent for MediaCorp to work with trusted company like Sony.”