Bexel’s New A/V Cart Gets the Sound on the Sideline Fast
The customizable cart accommodates fiber, copper, and wireless
Just in time for the end of the MLB season and the start of NFL, broadcast-services provider Bexel wheeled out its latest contribution to the demand for increased productivity and cost-effectiveness on the field — or, more specifically, on the sidelines. The Sideline Audio/Video Cart, which debuted in September, is a plug-and-play solution for streamlining acquisition of field audio and video feeds in all types of stadium sports productions.
With pneumatic tires and lightweight aluminum shell — the cart measures 72 x 47 x 36 in. and, depending on how it’s equipped, weighs between 500 lb. and 700 lb. — the cart can be deployed on the sideline or end zone of a sports field or anywhere requiring quick and easy connections for video and audio feeds.
Initial deployments for the cart have been for NBC for the pregame show on its Sunday Night Football broadcasts and ESPN for its college football games (pictured).
À la Carte
The carts can be configured to user specifications. For instance, Hydra I/O is typically standard on the menu, given the ubiquity of Calrec consoles, but each cart can also include MADI and Dante connectivity. The cart provides connections for single-mode fiber and SMPTE hybrid and copper cables, as well as for wireless audio and video transmission. A built-in patch bay allows users to monitor, troubleshoot, and manage signal routing. The cart is powered via 110-V outlet and provides an extended period of UPS backup power. But the goal for these carts is to help the networks increase productivity and reduce costs.
“You’ll go to a game and see long tables piled 5 ft. high with equipment that A2s have to sort and deploy,” says Ted Marvin, senior audio engineer at Bexel’s Burbank office. “The cart has everything they need already connected and ready to go, in a fraction of the setup time they used to need.”
Lee Estroff, VP, strategic accounts, Bexel, says development of the Sideline A/V Cart is an outgrowth of the pressure that networks are experiencing to control costs. “It’s an efficient and self-contained vehicle that not only offers greater flexibility in acquiring audio and video feeds but also accelerates setup and saves money.”
Marvin notes how NBC’s football pregame show has to clear the field quickly before the game begins: “Since equipment can be preassembled in the cart, setup and strike times are greatly reduced. Staff costs are lowered because fewer technicians are required onsite, and they can arrive later to the venue.”