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STV upgrades sound control rooms for AoIP

STV is the first UK broadcaster to employ Lawo's A_UHD Core (Phase 2) and 48-fader mc²56 MKIII console,

STV has become the first UK broadcaster to employ Lawo’s A_UHD Core (Phase 2) and 48-fader mc²56 MKIII console, as part of an upgrade of its sound control rooms.

The broadcaster first began talking to Lawo about IP workflows at IBC in 2019.

It decided to update its existing audio technology with Lawo’s A__UHD Core DSP (Phase 2) processing platform, which gave the broadcaster to benefit from IP signal and distribution, and a reduced rack footprint. Lawo also supplied a Mix Kitchen setup to increase the system’s flexibility and enable remote hardware control of the console. 

The native-IP A__UHD Core delivers 1,024 channels of mc²-quality audio processing in 1RU, while reducing power consumption. It provides multiple sets of monitoring matrices, downmixing and upmixing, and is ready for next-generation audio formats such as Dolby Atmos and MPEG-H. Lawo’s new A__UHD Core is a native IP device, designed to work within IP networks and manage networked devices. It is based on open standards such as ST2110-30/-31, AES67, RAVENNA, Ember+ and NMOS.

STV also opted for Lawo’s A__mic8 stageboxes for its news studios, installing multiple wall boxes around the studio instead of a larger centrally located A__stage64 unit to help reduce microphone cabling. R3LAY Virtual Patchbay (VPB) was also deployed for the SpotOn playback software, moving away from a separate AES based soundcard.

As construction on STV’s facilities progressed, a technical issue resulted in the new Lawo audio console system being brought online early for a series of live Scottish Parliamentary Election broadcasts in early May.

“We wanted to spend as much time with the Lawo equipment as possible before implementation to better understand how the new AoIP workflows work and integrate with our other sound systems and to be able to make the best use of the flexible and scalable workflows”, said Sam Dornan, channels operations manager of STV Central. “Technical issues resulted in us bringing the console online earlier than planned and we received instant support from Lawo. The majority of commissioning and training with the mc²56 was already completed, but kudos to the Lawo team and our STV engineering team who worked together to get everything swiftly changed over in a short space of time. It was a tense few days but the Lawo is very flexible and intuitive.”

“We had this project scheduled to finalise in early June, when the STV control room was planned to be ready for production  when Sam got in touch and explained the situation. Of course, the Lawo and STV teams got cracking straight away,” added Devin Workman, Lawo’s director audio sales, UK and Ireland. “This project serves to demonstrate the flexibility of IP technology in establishing infrastructures.”