Wimbledon Aces On-Site Communications With Riedel Intercom Systems
Riedel Communications’ Artist and Acrobat intercom systems were used throughout the 2013 Wimbledon Championships to facilitate communications across the All England Lawn Tennis Club. RG Jones Sound Engineering, provider of all live audio and communications solutions for the tournament, deployed the Riedel intercom solutions for use by Hawk-Eye operators, statistics collectors, scoreboard operators, and other staff, including the team supporting on-court presentations following the victory of the U.K.’s Andy Murray over world No. 1 Novak Djokovic in the men’s final.
“Riedel’s Artist and Acrobat intercom systems provide the flexibility and performance required in a live high-profile event such as the Wimbledon Championships,” says RG Jones project manager Tim Speight. “Clear, reliable communications play a critical role in ensuring an event of this complexity and magnitude comes off successfully, and Riedel equipment has met this requirement time and time again.”
RG Jones has provided audio and communications systems for the Wimbledon Championships for decades, and Riedel gear has been part of that equipment complement for the past four years. This year the company supplied a total of 38 Artist digital matrix intercom panels, which were used by the Hawk-Eye operators managing the line-calling system, by stats collectors working for IT supplier IBM, and by scoreboard operators from International Display Systems (IDS), among others. For the 2013 tournament, RG Jones added an Acrobat wireless system for use on Centre Court during presentations.
The Artist digital matrix intercom system is based on a dual optical fiber ring to form a single large, full-summing, nonblocking distributed matrix. While the system “feels” like a single unit, it has no limitations in the number of crosspoints within or between the different nodes of the system. The Riedel solution facilitated the rapid setup of a flexible backbone that the RG Jones crew could adapt easily to support the various communications requirements of the tournament. The Artist’s Director configuration and control software enabled changes with the simple click of a mouse.
Taking advantage of the fact that the Artist system can operate as part of a complete intercom system across mobile and fixed production facilities, RG Jones made extensive use of the Riedel networks that participating broadcast companies were running, which in turn simplified provision of venuewide communications.
The Acrobat digital wireless intercom solution leverages the Digital Enhanced Cordless Telecommunications (DECT) standard’s base layer to provide a license-free cellular architecture with seamless handover between cells. Each Acrobat wireless beltpack used during the tournament assured clear communications by continuously monitoring and automatically selecting the best connection to the Acrobat cell controller.