CP Communications Establishes New Tampa-Area Headquarters

April 1, 2019

Spacious facility amplifies at-home production capabilities for streamed events, establishes developmental foundation for new Red House Streaming solutions family

St. Petersburg, Florida, February 13, 2019CP Communications, a leader in innovative solutions and services for broadcast and live event productions, has relocated its Elmsford, NY and Orlando, FL offices to a new 31,000-square-foot facility in St. Petersburg outside of Tampa. The facility will serve as CP Communications’ official headquarters for business and technical operations, housing four 53-foot production trucks, a NOC, and a 5,000-square-foot production studio.

CP Communications will retain its Fishkill, New York location, which will continue to house staff, field shops, engineering and local production facilities. The St. Petersburg facility reflects the broadcast industry’s transition from traditional RF signal transport technologies to IP, cloud and bonded cellular techniques. This includes further development of its new Red House Streaming solutions line, a family of production systems tailored for live-streamed events.

CEO Kurt Heitmann calls the 24/7 production studio the crown jewel of the new facility. CP Communications will equip the studio with its new Red House Streaming STREAM product line of IP Acquisition tools. These systems and a complete IP-based production workflow, including a high-density bank of Mobile Viewpoint playout and streaming servers, will allow CP to deliver a cost-effective yet high-end production solution to clients. In addition to providing a round-the-clock facility to produce live-streamed events, the studio will offer excellent value for sports and corporate events where limited on-location production resources are required.

“The Tampa area is among the fastest-growing technology and business hubs in the country, and we discovered that St. Petersburg had plenty of flexible industrial space to fit our needs,” said Heitmann. “We simply outgrew our Elmsford, NY facility, and we now have theengineering and production space needed to grow our business. In addition to housing our mobile units, we can bring remote sources from live events into our facility, and cut live to on-air content. We will also accommodate global monitoring capabilities of remote productions from our NOC, as well as live voiceovers, editing and many other production tasks.”

Heitmann adds that the St. Petersburg facility will serve as a developmental base for future Red House Streaming solutions, which the company will officially unveil at the 2019 NAB Show (April 8-11, Las Vegas Convention Center). CP Communications will co-exhibit with partner Mobile Viewpoint at Booth C3307, with product launch details to come.

About CP Communications

For more than three decades, CP Communications has provided high-quality, cost-effective live event production solutions to major broadcasters, sports leagues and teams, and event and production companies. Our solutions include access to experienced professionals, state of the art equipment, and innovative technologies and techniques for wireless audio & video content acquisition, transport and delivery. Our culture of innovation, coupled with the highest quality assurance standards and passion for customer service, promote collaboration with our clients to determine the best custom solution for each live event, whether it’s the U.S. Open, Super Bowl, World Series, Kentucky Derby, Tony Awards, or a political convention, corporate conference, fashion show, parade or marathon. CP Communications offers six HDRF Mobile Production trucks, two ENG Vans, five motorcycles, and a full-service machine shop, and offers a custom design for each event from box rentals through to turnkey production solutions.

Atlona Names EARPRO its New Distribution Partner in Spain and Portugal

April 1, 2019

EARPRO views Atlona’s innovative solutions as essential for today’s demanding,
commercial AV projects and installations

SAN JOSE, California, February 14, 2019 – Recognizing the importance of Spain and Portugal to its growing global sales and support network, Atlona, a Panduit company, announces that audiovisual distribution firm EARPRO now represents its industry-leading AV and control solutions across both countries.

Founded in 1988, EARPRO has broadened its product portfolio to encompass pro audio, lighting, video and AV control systems. It has also expanded its services to include product demos, systems design expertise, training, and on-going technical support. In recent years, the company has contributed these complementary, value-added services to their dealer network on many high-profile AV installations across Spain and Portugal, including sports stadiums, entertainment venues, concerts, airport information centers, government facilities, and high-end retail establishments.

“Atlona’s products greatly enhance our product portfolio with very powerful, versatile capabilities,” said Miguel Mezquita, EARPRO’s Managing Director. “With their state-of-the-art user interface, AV management and control systems, Atlona’s products are uniquely well-suited to the latest AV over IP, soft codec-based conferencing, and 4K/HDR AV network control applications.”

In addition to the impressive product showroom in Barcelona, EARPRO will open another one at its new Madrid facilities in the coming months. According to EARPRO, these showrooms are crucial environments for presenting product demos and fostering greater confidence in its products through first-hand user engagement. EARPRO plans to conduct many activities and events dedicated to promoting Atlona products, including on-site training workshops at its key customers’ locations.

“We’re delighted to add EARPRO to our growing roster of global partners,” said Ronni Guggenheim, General Manager, Atlona. “We value the close collaboration we have with EARPRO’s experienced sales reps as we increase the visibility of our products across the pro AV landscape in Spain and Portugal. We look forward to building a mutually rewarding relationship with EARPRO and its growing base of pro AV and commercial system integrators.”

About Atlona

Atlona, a Panduit company, is a leading global manufacturer of AV over IP distribution, connectivity, and control solutions. The company designs and engineers innovative, award-winning products for a diverse range of residential and commercial AV and IT markets. Backed by an award-winning 10-year warranty, Atlona’s products are developed to enable our customers’ ability to connect and collaborate with simplicity. More information about Atlona is available at atlona.com.

About EARPRO

With a focus on commercial AV systems integrators across Spain and Portugal, EARPRO represents a long list of top AV brands, including pro systems by Harman, such as JBL Professional, Soundcraft, Studer, as well as Panasonic, Shure, Acme Lighting, Absen, LG, Epson, Optoma, Datapath, Iadea, Ricoh and now, Atlona. The company prides itself on providing personalized services designed to match these best-in-class pro AV products with the unique needs of systems integrators who perform custom installations in retail environments, and live events venues, such as sports stadiums and concert halls.

For more information on EARPRO’s Pro AV expertise and services in Madrid, Barcelona and Lisbon, please visit: http://www.earpro.es or follow EARPRO at Facebook @earproav, Twitter @earpro_av, Instagram @earpro_av and LinkedIn EARPRO.

New Cablecast Community Media Platform Upgrade Speeds and Simplifies Scheduling with Enhanced Automation

April 1, 2019

New features in version 6.6 eliminate tedious tasks for short-form content and recurring time slots, intelligently filling the schedule while freeing users’ time

MINNEAPOLIS, MINNESOTA, FEBRUARY 14, 2019 – Tightrope Media Systems today unleashed a significant new software upgrade for its Cablecast Community Media broadcast automation, playout and publishing platform. Cablecast 6.6 expands the system’s powerful features for automating repetitive scheduling tasks, thus speeding and simplifying day-to-day programming operations for community TV broadcasters. The new version will be demonstrated in the company’s suite at the Renaissance Las Vegas Hotel (Ren Exhibitor C) at the upcoming 2019 NAB Show, taking place April 8-11.

“While our recent software upgrades have added features to help PEG stations expand their reach  and better engage their audiences through online and OTT delivery, version 6.6 is all about the core scheduling tasks that community TV programmers deal with every day,” said Michelle Alimoradi, Marketing Manager, Cablecast Community Media. “Users switching to Cablecast from other systems have always been delighted by the time savings it offered, but we wanted to take it even further. Our goal with this release is to help them complete their scheduling in as little as half the time, by eliminating tedious, repetitious actions.”

The new Gap Filler tool intelligently fills breaks between shows with content beyond just the channel’s community bulletin board. Short-form videos such as public service announcements and event promos are intrinsic to community TV programming but are very tedious to schedule individually. With Cablecast 6.6, programmers can click on a gap in the schedule and select a saved search comprised of short-form content. Gap Filler will then automatically calculate and schedule the appropriate clips from that search to best fill the gap’s duration. Users can define intro and outro messages – such as station IDs – to bracket the gap, while options such as “Do Not Allow Repeats” ensure that viewers don’t simply see the same short-form clips over and over.

The new Auto-Scheduler feature automatically populates recurring time slots, sparing programmers from needing to schedule each episode individually. Users can define recurring time slots indefinitely into the future and set the Auto-Scheduler to dynamically populate them with the most recent show from a specified project, continually updating the schedule with the latest episode – a massive time-saver for customers running daily shows such as “Democracy Now!” Programmers also have the option of intentionally repeating a single show across all recurring slots and can flexibly override automatically-scheduled entries if they wish, with an event log reporting any such edits that superseded the defined rule.

The Gap Filler and Auto-Scheduler features both take advantage of Cablecast 6.6’s new allowable date range parameters. Start and/or end dates can be set for each show to define when the content is permitted to be broadcast – thereby preventing programs from being shown too soon or after they are no longer relevant, such as promos for past events or last month’s city council meeting. Gap Filler and Auto-Scheduler will automatically exclude any videos that would be outside their allowed date range, while users who attempt to manually schedule a clip for a prohibited date will receive a warning in the scheduling interface.

“We have always designed Cablecast to be like having a savvy, reliable, additional staff member at customers’ stations,” said Alimoradi. “You want to be able to train it, and then just let it do its thing. Version 6.6 makes the system an even more valuable team member, automatically filling up the channels’ schedule to free up real staff members’ calendars. By helping users do their scheduling faster, Cablecast gives them more time to create great content.”

The Cablecast 6.6 upgrade will be available at the end of February, and will be free for Cablecast customers on active support agreements. 

About Cablecast

For over 20 years, the Cablecast Community Media platform from Tightrope Media Systems has enabled exceptional workflow efficiency, usability and versatility to help local cable channels, campus television and other community media providers engage their viewers in the evolving media landscape. The comprehensive Cablecast product line provides complete, tightly-integrated broadcast solutions including station automation, playout servers, Internet video on demand and live streaming. For more information, visit www.cablecast.tv or call (866) 866-4118.

Dielectric Meeting with FCC Addresses Potential Repack Phase Completion Issues

April 1, 2019

Winter weather delays, tower rigging crew shortages among top issues driving concerns over successful completion of repack transitions; Dielectric to demonstrate auxiliary antenna solution at NAB

RAYMOND, Maine, February 19, 2019 — Dielectric, along with other broadcast representatives, attended a January 31 meeting with the FCC Incentive Auction Task Force and Media Bureau to provide an update on repack site completions. The meeting followed an October 2018 meeting at which Dielectric presented data indicating tower crew concerns about timely completion of main antenna installations.

The output from the FCC meeting was clear: “The FCC will be flexible in considering STA applications, and extensions if justified, potentially allowing more stations to use interim antennas to meet phase deadlines,” said Keith Pelletier, vice president and general manager, Dielectric.

Although significant repack progress has been made, there are signs that broadcasters may face increasing difficulty in meeting phase deadlines due to severe winter weather and a shortage of qualified tower crews. As rigging and other delays build, Dielectric sees the potential for a domino effect, delaying installations of permanent antennas.

“Some of our customers have been forced to place their permanent repack antennas in storage,” said Pelletier. “Stations that fail to vacate their channels in time could prevent stations in future phases from staying on schedule, due to the critical linked changes in the transition plan. We see potential for a serious bottleneck in phases 3 through 6.”

The installation of interim antennas could keep channel phase evacuations and associated linked changes on track. Although this is not a one size fits all solution, there are many more rigging crews capable of safely installing these side-mount broadband antennas.

“The FCC has indicated their willingness to approve interim facilities for reimbursement with suitable engineering support, demonstrating that the interim facility does not significantly harm the station’s over-the-air viewership,” said Jay Martin, VP Sales, Dielectric. “If the choice becomes going off-air or staying on the existing channel and disrupting critical linkages, operating an interim facility may be a viable compromise for all concerned.”

Making an Interim Plan

Dielectric updated its entire TV antenna product line over the past several years in preparation for repack. The company also foresaw the challenges of the industry adhering to a strict transition schedule of 10 phases in 39 months — directly leading to the creation of its TFU-WB Series antenna in 2016.

The TFU-WB Series is a flexible, broadband antenna, available in horizontally and elliptically polarized versions. Marketed as a main or auxiliary antenna, the TFU-WB offers an interim side-mounted solution for stations challenged by rigging, permitting or other delays. This year marks the third anniversary of its first use broadcasting ATSC 3.0 signals over Las Vegas. It will continue to be a focal point at Dielectric’s NAB Show 2019 booth (C2213) as it serves a critical industry need. NAB Show 2019 show takes place April 8-11 at the Las Vegas Convention Center.

“TV stations and their consultants should critically evaluate their progress towards meeting phase deadlines now and, where appropriate, seek approval to use and install interim antennas,” said Pelletier. “The TFU-WB exists to help stations vacate their existing channels on time — the chief goal of the repack—by staying on the air, operating under STA rules, until their permanent antennas are installed.

No Time to Waste

Nearly 143 affected stations moved during phase 1, which ended November 30, 2018, with another 115 phase 2 stations scheduled to move to new channels by April 12. While the first phase progressed relatively close to schedule, more than 30 stations are now operating under STA approvals.

“The FCC’s stated willingness to be flexible with stations experiencing difficulties and considering interim facilitieswill be essential,” said Martin. “More than 400 more stations must move to new channels in phases 3 through 6 between mid-April and October 18th.”

“The broadband design of these antennas means that Dielectric can have antennas on hand for quick deployment,but it is important for stations to work with their consultants now to identify whether the interim antenna is a suitable solution,” said Pelletier. “Dielectric is firmly committed to working with the FCC and helping broadcasters meet their repack deadlines, thus freeing spectrum for Incentive Auction winners.”

About Dielectric

Based in Raymond, Maine, Dielectric LLC is a wholly owned subsidiary of Sinclair Broadcast Group. Dielectric is a leading provider of innovative broadcast products. Now celebrating its 76th year of operation, the company builds and delivers antennas and RF systems optimized for every TV and FM radio broadcast need since 1942. Dielectric is an innovative, customer-centric organization with a long history of engineering excellence in designing and manufacturing high-quality broadcast solutions. As a trust partner of broadcasters worldwide, Dielectric maintains its legacy of advanced, precision RF solutions while building in features that prepare broadcasters for the future. More information can be accessed at www.dielectric.com

MultiDyne to Launch Next-Generation SilverBack Series at 2019 NAB Show

April 1, 2019

Market-leading camera-mounted fiber transport family now addresses virtually all production verticals across broadcast, cinema and professional AV markets

Hauppauge, NY, February 20, 2019MultiDyne Fiber Optic Solutions will refresh its market-leading SilverBack series of camera-mounted fiber transport solutions at the 2019 NAB Show with three additions to serve live production needs across all budgets. The updated series, anchored by the now-shipping, IP-enabled SilverBack V, includes the global debut of two models that extend MultiDyne’s reach into new production verticals. MultiDyne will demonstrate all three systems at Booth C5013 from April 8-11 at the Las Vegas Convention Center.

The SilverBack V broke ground in the convergence of fiber and IP-based production workflows upon its introduction in 2018. The industry’s first 12G- and 4K-capable camera-back system to incorporate an IP output, the SilverBack V offers a gateway to multipoint IP networks, enabling users to move field-acquired content to many destinations. Broadcasters and content producers can send video, audio and data captured on location to studios, post houses and mobile production trucks at once, for example.

The SilverBack V remains the high-end option for broadcast and digital cinema customers working with Ultra HD resolutions. Its optimized bandwidth efficiency reliably accommodates the high data rates that live 4K and 8K productions require — a substantial benefit for live sports, concerts, and motion picture productions.

New for NAB, MultiDyne has added power management capabilities to the SilverBack V that eliminates the need for external power supplies. This will prove especially valuable for camera operators and cinematographers for powering focus, iris and zoom directly from the unit without risk of power supply failure. The compact, lightweight design also supports two camera heads that are configurable to today’s leading cameras, with a common, integrated multiviewer to monitor both cameras.

MultiDyne will additionally introduce the SilverBack HP, a re-imagined version of the popular SilverBack II fiber transceiver that adds two-channel intercom and Ethernet alongside video, audio, and data. Like its predecessor, the SilverBack HP provides  robust, full bandwidth fiber-optic links for 3G, HD and SDI signals from the field to a truck, control room or other receive point along with genlock, tally and audio.

MultiDyne will also extend the operational benefits of SilverBack to commercial AV and smaller event productions for the first time with SilverBack Pro. The SilverBack Pro offers the same engineering innovation, live production benefits and ease of use associated with all SilverBack products at a much lower cost. This provides worship facilities, corporations and K-12/higher education systems with a highly configurable camera-back fiber transport system to cover live performances, presentations, lectures and high school/college sports at an affordable price point.

MultiDyne President Frank Jachetta notes that the popularity of the SilverBack line inspired the company to diversify the product line, with specific models and price points that can serve a much broader customer base.

“All three of our next-generation SilverBack systems integrate the same user-friendly features, interfaces and menus, with just the right amount of signal density and networking capabilities to serve each price point,” said Jachetta. “Whether the customer is using SilverBack for professional AV applications, cinematography, or the largest, mission-critical live broadcasts, the model that suits their needs will offer the same flexible, project-to-project configurability for their signal acquisition goals in the field.”

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About MultiDyne

With over 40 years of experience serving the Broadcasters and video production communities worldwide, MultiDyne Fiber Optic Systems leads the industry in developing pioneering signal conversion and fiber-optic-based transport systems for the broadcast, cable, satellite, production, digital cinema, pro A/V, corporate, retail, surveillance, teleconferencing, judicial arraignment, transportation, government, military, and healthcare markets.

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