Eastlink Chooses DiGiCo SD10B For New HD Mobile Unit
When Canadian television company Eastlink TV contacted DiGiCo distributor Gerr Audio to talk about an intercom system for the company’s new HD mobile unit, it ended up with more than it bargained for. This new, state-of-the-art facility not only features the originally requested intercom, but a DiGiCo SD10B broadcast specific digital mixing console.
“Historically, we’ve supplied Eastlink with Clearcomm intercoms,” explains Gerr’s Andrew Hope. “So when they were kitting out the new HD mobile, which is a big step up for them as a regional television provider, they came to talk to us about it.
“Of course, I looked around and said ‘so what else are you going to put in this truck…?’. We ended up supplying a large part of the audio system, with CEV in Montreal handling the integration. The centrepiece is the SD10B.”
Eastlink had also done a considerable amount of research into console options in preparation for the build, having explored different products over three years of visits to the NAB show in the US.
“We decided to go with the DiGiCo console because of its reputation and price point,” says Kaushal Hathi, Operations Manager at Eastlink. “It provides a big bang for the buck, which meant we didn’t have to sacrifice quality for price.
“I had always thought of DiGiCo as producing live event consoles until I was introduced to the SD10B. Since this console is to be used for different types of events, from sports to music, we were impressed with the versatility it offers.”
Other considerations for Eastlink were ease of use, to accommodate the many different people who will operate it, and its off-line software, which allows the preparation of sessions prior to arriving at any event.
“Finally, the console size had to be small enough for a mobile environment, but large enough to be able to operate properly,” Kaushal adds. “The SD10B provided both. The MADI interface is ideal for a mobile environment, which not only cuts down on cabling but provides more flexibility for audio routing.”
Eastlink’s operators have found the console both user-friendly and intuitive. “They are also very impressed with it’s flexibly,” continues Kaushal. “The sound quality is superb and the operators are very impressed with the monitoring capabilities, such as the user definable monitor matrix with calibrated monitor levels. They find the compressors and the pre-amps very powerful, with the pre-amps hard to distort, and the analog conversion is powerful and clean. Ergonomically, they find all the controls are within easy reach.”
One of Eastlink’s first outings with the SD10B was at the East Coast Music Awards Gala event at the beginning of March, which included 12 live musical acts. The broadcast mix was handled entirely by the console, and Kaushal reports that the entire mobile unit performed just as it was designed to do.
“Andrew at Gerr Audio has handled all our needs and we have always found him extremely knowledgeable and accessible,” Kaushal concludes. “I‘m glad we went with the DiGiCo console, so much so that I wouldn’t look at other products on future projects.”