Drewry Stations Select JVC ProHD Cameras for ENG Needs
Lawton, OK-based Drewry Communications Group has standardized on JVC ProHD cameras for ENG purposes for all five of its television stations.
On Feb. 23, KFDA-TV, the Drewry CBS affiliate serving Amarillo, Texas (DMA #131), was the first station in the group to launch its local newscast in HD. Brent McClure, KFDA general manager, said the station is using seven GY-HM790U cameras in the field for local news and sports coverage.
Last month, KFDA’s new JVC camcorders covered range fires that blanketed some of the new ENG cameras in dirt and soot. McClure says he was very satisfied how the cameras performed in the adverse conditions. “The picture to the marketplace is great,” he adds.
Mike Lee, VP and GM of KXXV, the Drewry-owned ABC affiliate serving Waco-Temple-Bryan, Texas (DMA #89), says the group’s choice of JVC ProHD camcorders, particularly the GY-HM790U, was a result of several factors. “First and foremost, the camera makes a great picture,” he says. “Plus, it looks and feels like conventional ENG cameras that we used for years.”
Lee did not want to commit to an expensive, proprietary recording media when the stations transitioned to HD production. JVC’s ProHD cameras use inexpensive SDHC media cards, which fit the bill perfectly. Lee also said the JVC cameras were a cost-effective solution that helped the station group maximize its budget.
KFDA maintained a very structured migration to HD. Starting in December, all new elements of its HD workflow – from master control to graphics – were individually introduced into the workflow. Even field production was converted one camcorder and one edit bay at a time. By the time the station launched its HD newscast, all its new equipment and workflows were established.
The current workflow at KXXV involves ingesting tape-based footage to its Adobe Premiere CS5 NLE systems for post, then dubbing completed packages to tape for playback. With the move to a file-based system (along with its HD upgrade), the station will save on maintenance costs for its aging VTRs and camcorders. Plus, with JVC’s native file recording, there is no need for ingesting or transcoding footage, which will save significant editing time. “Better product and we save money – it’s a wonderful combination,” Lee saiys
KXXV is expected to make its own transition to local HD news on April 25. It has purchased 10 GY-HM790Us and three GY-HM700Us with Canon lenses for its main facility in Waco and KRHD, its digital low-power satellite station in Bryan/College Station, Texas. Drewry’s other stations that have not yet made the transition to local HD news are KSWO and KAUZ, serving the combined market of Lawton, Okla., and Wichita Falls, Texas (DMA #146), and KWES in Odessa-Midland, Texas (DMA # 151).
Lee says the GY-HM790U is “the most impressive product JVC has put on the market for many, many years. I think it’s a well thought-out design, and the layout is very familiar, especially for veteran ENG shooters.”