Robovision Finds Role for FOX NFC Championship Game Coverage
With limited fans in attendance at the NFC Championship game on Jan. 24th, 2021 due to COVID-19 restrictions, FOX’s broadcast coverage took on an added level of importance. Every camera position became a vital connection between the event and the viewer, meaning the expectations for quality were higher than ever. In response, FOX Sports turned to Robovision to provide next-level goal line coverage of the game.
Robovision customized two robotic camera systems with tailored mounts, Canon 40x lenses, and panbar controls. The systems were mounted to the roof of the press box at Lambeau Field, perpendicular to each goal line. The Canon 40x lenses provided head-to-toe coverage of players at any point on the goal lines, ensuring definitive looks were available for questionable calls. Finally, the panbar control systems provided a more authentic feel to the image movement than what could have been attained using traditional joystick controllers.
The panbar systems allowed the camera operators to stand while operating, similar to how they would operate a traditional camera on a tripod. The Robovision systems provided noticeably improved camera movement, tighter coverage, and more consistent results.
Two of Robovision’s camera operators ran the systems for the game, both with years of experience covering football. In addition to providing definitive goal line looks, the systems provided alternative pit coverage angles, substitution coverage, and fan reaction shots when the ball was away from the goal lines.
Robovision has worked with broadcast clients since the start of the pandemic to provide custom robotic camera solutions adapted to the new production infrastructure and safety protocols. Robovision Chief Operations Officer Rich Glandorf notes that in this era of COVID coverage, remote cameras have provided a safer alternative for broadcasters by minimizing the overall production footprint, in the compound and in the venues. Robovision’s robotic camera solutions have allowed broadcasters to maintain the level of coverage that viewers expect and in a way that has minimized risk for the production crews, camera operators, and technicians. Robovision will continue to work with broadcasters to improve tomorrow’s workflows and develop tailored solutions as the workflows change.