Time Warner Cable To Install Tightrope Media Systems’ ZEPLAY
Time Warner Cable will simplify live sports production and enhance the regional sports viewing experience with Tightrope Media Systems’ ZEPLAY multi-channel instant replay systems. The company will install ten ZEPLAY units across several of its biggest sports markets through late summer.
Time Warner Cable, one of the nation’s largest cable multi-system operators (MSOs), is upgrading mobile production trucks with ZEPLAY and other production systems in Los Angeles and Milwaukee among other markets. The company will use ZEPLAY for efficient and professional-quality replay for regional high school, college and some professional sports.
“We were seeking a partner that would listen to us, and a product competitive to top instant replay systems but more open and cost-efficient,” said Peter Buxton, senior remote broadcast engineer, Time Warner Cable. “ZEPLAY is competitively priced, reliably handles multi-angle replay, allows more collaboration with our Final Cut Pro editing systems and offers a far easier learning curve for new operators. We fully intend to transition other trucks to ZEPLAY moving forward.”
Buxton added that Time Warner Cable will bring distinctively high-quality, professional programming to their customers by moving to HD and equipping mobile units with ZEPLAY — a level of production quality rarely seen in high school sports especially.
Three ZEPLAY units are operational today in Time Warner Cable markets across New York State, where local crews are seeing improvements in production efficiency and on-air quality. Tom White, director of operations for New York State, notes that the ability to record four channels at once — and handle multiple other production tasks from the same unit — has elevated their productions to another level.
“ZEPLAY improves the broadcast immensely because instead of rolling out one look we can offer multiple looks by continuously recording four channels,” said White. “Previously, two of our three locations couldn’t utilize all of these various production elements because they lacked any type of server. The ZEPLAY gives them all the necessary elements and replay looks right at their fingertips. It’s all very intuitive, and it’s really been an improvement.”
By intuitive, White points to the ability to easily build sequences, utilize macros and shortcut keys, tag and edit clips, and pull clips from its archive. He also notes that the built-in multiviewer allows his operators to efficiently see all inputs and outputs.
“Everything is right in front you,” he said. “We very quickly got to the point where we are building packages and utilizing the box to its full potential. Anyone that can wrap their minds around the basic function of a replay server can operate ZEPLAY with no problem.”