Grass Valley, Avid Get ‘Insider’ Role for CBS
CBS Television Distribution is airing its popular entertainment news programs “Entertainment Tonight,” and “The Insider” in high-definition (HD) with the help of Grass Valley K2 HD media servers combined with Editware Fastrack hybrid editing systems, and an Avid workflow consisting of Media Composer Nitris DX editing systems, Avid Unity ISIS shared storage, and the Avid Interplay nonlinear workflow engine.
On the CBS Studio Center stages, more than 250 people work together to produce multiple versions of the 30-minute syndicated entertainment news shows. One of the many challenges was getting all of the post produced packages, bumpers, and promos from the post production stage to the “ET” and “The Insider” control rooms.
“What the CBS Television Distribution installation illustrates is what a flexible platform K2 provides for multiple vendor integration that supports unique and powerful workflows,” said Jeff Rosica, Senior Vice President of Grass Valley. “The staff at ‘Entertainment Tonight’ and ‘The Insider’ is well versed in the use of Grass Valley servers and we’re happy to continue to support them in their move to HD.”
To guarantee workflow productivity, Grass Valley and Editware worked together to adapt the Fastrack hybrid editing system to operate seamlessly with K2 to provide CBS with a powerful edit controller that controls the K2 in both linear and nonlinear modes.
“ET” and “The Insider” share a total of 64 Grass Valley K2 HD channels comprised of SAN and Standalone configurations. Each show relies on a unique combination of K2 AppCenter and Editware Fastrack NLE control to support a highly time sensitive workflow. Show feeds are played directly from K2 under the control of the Grass Valley K2 AppCenter application and or Crispin Automation.
The new postproduction system is designed around an all-HD Avid environment with 26 Avid Media Composer Nitris DX and two Symphony Nitris DX systems sharing media via 192 TB of Avid Unity ISIS storage. The post team has developed a streamlined file-handling process that enables the fast and totally automated transfer of HD material from the Avid editing systems to the Grass Valley K2 servers.
With multiple versions of both “ET” and “The Insider” being created daily, the final video packages are often still being edited either on Avid systems or directly on the Grass Valley K2 servers using the Fastrack edit systems as the shows begin airing. This workflow gives both programs tremendous flexibility getting video packages to air. The unique multi-vendor production environment provides proof of the Grass Valley K2 media server platform’s ability to work seamlessly with third-party edit systems in the production of fast turnaround content.