Arena Television Hits OB Bull’s-Eye for Darts Championship
The PDC (Professional Darts Corp.) World Championship came to a suitably boozy, excitable conclusion on Jan. 3 at Alexandra Palace in north London. Phil “The Power” Taylor claimed his 15th title and was so carried away by events that he kissed the male score caller, a moment captured by OB company Arena Television in HD for Sky Sports.
The epic tournament began on Dec. 18, just as heavy snow hit the UK. This might have been a cold and miserable proposition for Arena Television, but, luckily, the venue is large enough to accommodate the four articulated vehicles used for the production inside.
Arena’s large OB7 truck was the main scanner, taking feeds from 22 cameras, including three in the presentation studio, two Sony triple-motion super-slo-mos, and an I-Movix super-high-speed camera. Hardware around the playing area included a 30-ft. jib arm, a Furio track-mounted remotely controlled dolly, and three hotheads, two of which supported remote pan-and-tilt systems.
Working alongside OB7 was a graphics unit with one Vizrt and two Trio HD graphics workstations, a VT14 housing two Avid edit systems connected through a shared storage server, and a VT6 with recording and playback equipment, which included a Sony SRW master recorder, DigiBeta VT machines, and viewing/playout units.
About 90 hours of HD coverage was produced from “Ally Pally” for Sky, with 5.1 surround mixed through OB7’s Calrec Alpha console.
For anyone fearing darts withdrawal, the BBC is covering the rival BDO (British Darts Organisation) World Professional Championships at Lakeside, which began on Jan. 2.