Ikegami a safe bet for SportView Technologies

In the fast-paced world of pari-mutuel racing, where bettors wager against one another instead of the house, Sport View Technologies aims to be the thoroughbred of broadcast systems integrators. To ensure that every visual subtlety of a race is communicated clearly to a track’s patrons, Sport View Technologies has specified the advanced image quality of Ikegami HL-60W and HC-D57W full-digital cameras.

The 20 new Ikegami cameras that Sport View Technologies is integrating into its custom design/build systems are a response to the increasingly high expectations that horse and dog track patrons have for the video systems at these facilities.

“You have to bring the player into the action, and that’s what we’re doing by going with Ikegami cameras,” says Josh Shanahan, Executive Director of Business Development for Sport View Technologies. “They like to see extremely sharp definition in the animal that they’re betting on, and the right camera is essential to making that happen. The Ikegami cameras we’re specifying provide true blacks and true whites, and react extremely well in varying light conditions – day, dusk, and night.”

At the race courses that Sport View Technologies designs systems for, there can be as many as four Ikegami HL-60W manned cameras in towers, complemented by another HL-60W “pan camera” assigned to zooming in on the lead animal. For Sport View Technologies, the cameras they choose must be both extremely reliable and provide the best possible video quality for race viewers.

“The facilities we work with expect excellent, crisp imagery, and they expect that their telecast is not going to be disrupted or interrupted by equipment failure,” Shanahan says. “The Ikegami HL-60W enables them to achieve their objective to look as good, if not better, than the other signals that are being distributed throughout the country.”

Joining the HL-60W in Sport View Technologies’ race track installations are Ikegami HC-D57W camcorders, which give track videographers a highly mobile option for capturing precision images from the winner’s circle and anywhere else the action is. The HC-D57 features advanced Ikegami 12-bit DSP ASICs, three-chip AIT CCD’s with a high picture sensitivity of f 11 and low vertical smear, switchable 16:9/4:3 aspect ratio image capture, and advanced DTL (detail) functions.

“The Ikegami HC-D57W is a perfect match for what we do,” adds David Scott, Director of Engineering for Sport View Technologies. “The picture quality, with its outstanding S/N ratio, is exactly what we were looking for. We were also impressed with this camera’s price-to-performance ratio.”

Shanahan adds that a camera with excellent performance is key because video is a crucial component in how our clients compete. Why? “More than 70 percent of the revenues they obtain come from off-track,” he says. “If their signal, which gets uplinked via satellite for national and international broadcast, looks good, people have more of a tendency to play it. When we evaluated the Ikegami HL-60W, we saw the picture quality was far superior to anything out there.”

The HL-60W combines advanced digital signal processing features with compact size, low power consumption (9.8 watts) and switchable 16:9/4:3 imagery. Other features include three-chip AIT 520,000 pixel CCDs and brand-new Ikegami DSP (digital signal processing) ASIC (application specific integrated circuit) technology with 0.18 micron design. With up to 38-bit internal processing, 67 dB signal-to-noise ratio, a high picture sensitivity of f11, and low vertical smear of -135dB, the HL-60W delivers the goods.

“These productions have evolved into a true sports show, complete with talent and graphics that will make a positive impression on patrons familiar with major sports networks,” Shanahan observes. “Sport View Technologies has been in the racing industry for almost 52 years and we have a lot of passion for the sport. Specifying Ikegami cameras demonstrates we are committed to the best quality image for our clients.”

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