EVS Helps Power Fox Sports’ 4K Workflow at All-Star Game
EVS technology has been a staple of the MLB All-Star compound for years, this year deploying an estimated 41 live-production replay servers, as well as a host of other products and systems. The 2013 edition of the All-Star Game, however presented a brand new challenge for Fox Sports and EVS – 4K on the baseball diamond.
Fox Sports experimented with 4K workflows for baseball coverage for the first time at All-Star, deploying a Canon C500 EOS camera (with a EF 70-200mm lens) next to the high-home HD game camera and extracting HD-quality close-ups from the overall 4K image for replays.
One XT3 server was used to manage 4K replays (1-in and 1-out), in conjunction with an AJA Corvid Ultra for Zooming. Another XT3 managed the 4K playback of the same content for a secondary system for 4K analysis with ChyronHego’s AKI Paint graphics and pointer system.
“The 4K camera was being ingested into the EVS XT3 server to perform 4K replays from this camera,” says James Stellpflug, VP, Sports Products, The Americas, EVS. The output of the second EVS 4K server was then fed to HEGO to capture and manage a series of added effects for 4K including zooming.”
“The XT3 worked perfectly with no issues at all performing 4K replays,” he adds. “The Zooming extraction from the 4K content was an evaluation phase for Fox Sports at this event.”
Although the system never made air (primarily due to a lack of in-game moments that necessitated the its use), Fox Sports VP of Field Operations Mike Davies reacted positively to the 4K workflow, saying “we are certainly hopeful to bring this back in a competitive game, but it gives us a better idea in terms of what is useful and not useful on a uniquely exhibitionary game like the All-Star Game.” He hopes to use it again come October during Fox’s coverage of the MLB Postseason.
In addition to playing role in the 4K workflow, EVS supplied a number of other solutions to Fox’s production.
The XFile3 application was in use for enhanced management of content for restore and archive during the event. XFile3 offers a new user interface with the ability to transparently transcode content to expedite the production process when working with transportable archives.
“EVS has pioneered file based workflows involving codec flexibility and expedited workflows, like this used at the All Star Game,” says Stellpflug. “And with XFile3 we are improving that process for every broadcast partner going forward.”
The LSM Connect tablet-base app (launched at NAB 2013) allows LSM operators to manage their server’s content and tag clips with metadata, streamlining the building of highlights and increase the collaboration between systems.
EVS also supplied new editorial tools with Multicam 11.02 software to allow the LSM highlight user to rapidly manage advanced editing and functions, including speed inserts, audio editing, and timelines edits.
“The overall aspect of the All Star Game and the surrounding productions was a great success for all EVS systems in use,” says Stellpflug. “EVS was a core part of every broadcast taking place at the All Star Game weekend, with an estimated 41 servers in use and multiple other products and systems to integrate the workflows and processes. EVS is proud to have our products operate as such cornerstone component to all the All Star Game events and broadcasts.”