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Germany’s MMC Studios gets in sync with Hitomi

The studios are using Hitomi MatchBox as part of the move to 4K HDR on shows such as Let's Dance, The Masked Singer and The X Factor

MMC Studios in Cologne has employed a full set of its synchronisation tools from Hitomi Broadcast as part of its move towards 4K HDR production.

The studios are home to Let’s Dance (the German version of Dancing with the Stars/Strictly Come Dancing), The Masked Singer and The X Factor.

“On a show like Let’s Dance, we produce in HDR Ultra HD, and deliver that and a SDR HD version to CBC, RTL’s broadcast centre,” said Andreas Albert, head of technical operations at MMC Studios. “The show can have as many as 20 or 30 HD/4K and colour space conversions in production, as well as the final output, and with different latencies in different converters, we have to work hard to keep everything in synchronisation.”

The studios are using Hitomi MatchBox to align every stage of the process. MatchBox Glass, the iPhone app version of the signal generator, is used on every camera into the switcher. A MatchBox Generator provides test signals for video processing chains, and the MatchBox Analyser provides measurement of lip sync, phase coherence and channel identification. Both the generator and analyser are 4K ready with 12G-SDI connectivity, said Hitomi.

“Our reputation depends on us delivering to the very highest standards, especially now that Ultra HD is growing in importance,” added Albert. “Lip sync errors are very obvious and irritating for viewers, and we absolutely rely on Hitomi as the industry standard for addressing this issue.

“Hitomi allows us to send test signals to our customers and ensure that they can deal with any potential lip sync issues before they become a problem. It’s an indispensable tool for us, and we simply couldn’t operate at the level of quality that we do without it.”