Blackmagic Design today announced that Keytown Productions is using Blackmagic URSA Broadcast G2 cameras and ATEM Constellation 8K live production switchers to produce live broadcasts for the Professional Darts Corporation (PDC).
The PDC organized European Tour, which started in 2012 with five events, now consists of 13 events across seven countries. Robbert van Loon, CEO at Keytown Productions, has been working with the PDC for around a decade and has experienced that growth first hand.
The company previously relied on a PPU solution built at each new venue. However, with tournaments happening in quick succession and with major streamers, including DAZN and Viaplay, investing in the rights, the PDC came to Keytown Productions with the idea of building a more permanent OB solution.
That took the form of a purpose built 39 feet truck capable of accommodating a production team of nine, and has relied on a mix of new and existing Blackmagic Design hardware already employed in the PPU systems. New hardware systems include two ATEM Constellation 8K and a Universal Videohub 72 video router.
“The big question is, is the video router or switcher the most important thing? For me, it all starts when the footage and sources enter the van, which is the router, so we have opted for Universal Videohub,” reveals van Loon.
“From the router, we give both ATEM switchers the same sources. That built in redundancy means we have a fallback if anything was to happen to either switcher. With no additional patching required, switching over takes us about a minute,” he notes. “Second, it’s very handy because we can now benefit from four multiviewers from each system, giving us eight multiviewers in that van, which we can use independently.”
When it comes to specific features valued by the Keytown Productions team, there’s a definite favorite: the ease with which a split shot can be generated, showing both the player, the dart board and any graphics. “We also utilize the ATEM’s multiple M/Es. Typically, we have at least one M/E for the program and send another M/E to the screens in the venue.”
As well as increasing reliability and adding to the quality of the coverage, the truck has also helped Keytown achieve its aim of reducing setup time at each location from nine hours to less than five. It’s now simply a case of arriving and finding a spot with a good cable route into the venue.
The OB has already been making its way around Europe, visiting Poland, Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium and more in recent weeks. “It’s a lot easier now that it’s all pre configured,” concludes van Loom. “Aside from the time saved by not having to rebuild the system each time, everything feels more solid and failproof. It takes away much of the stress we would have faced previously.”
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