Harmonic helps NBC to multi-platform record

NBC will deliver its most extensive Olympics coverage to viewers this summer, with all events streamed in real time on at least one NBC platform (broadcast, cable, or digital), writes Adrian Pennington. Live streams will be available across NBC’s mobile platforms.
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NBC will deliver its most extensive Olympics coverage to viewers this summer, with all events streamed in real time on at least one NBC platform (broadcast, cable, or digital), writes Adrian Pennington. Live streams will be available across NBC’s mobile platforms, offering 360º coverage. Helping the broadcaster achieve this will be a clutch of Harmonic storage and transcoding products. Harmonic is providing Omneon MediaGrid shared storage systems and ProMedia Carbon enterprise transcoding software to NBC Olympics, part of the NBC Sports Group, during its coverage of the 2012 London Olympics. The media storage and transcoding systems will enable it to quickly create content for NBCOlympics.com, mobile devices, and IPTV and VoD services. To ensure a fast turnaround for on-demand content, NBC Olympics will use a ProMedia Carbon transcoding farm to generate the high-quality multiformat video delivered on-demand to TVs, PCs, and mobile devices. According to Matt Adams, Harmonic’s VP of Broadcast Solutions, “ProMedia Carbon minimises file movement and improves workflow efficiency by enabling all transcoding operations to be performed in place on the MediaGrid file system.” Both products, he added, will assist NBC and its file based infrastructure in eliminating duplicate production processes so that it can more quickly and cost-effectively distribute multiplatform video content. MediaGrid storage systems will operate with Avid edit and media management platforms to facilitate a file-based highlights production workflow in which multiple editors can instantly access content. Incoming HD content from various venues will be recorded on Sony XDCAM XDS-PD1000 systems and transferred along with a low-res proxy to a 288TB MediaGrid at the International Broadcast Centre. Simultaneously, those full-resolution recordings will be replicated and transferred by Harmonic’s ProCast IP acceleration system over a 10Gbps circuit to a 432TB MediaGrid system at NBC’s ‘30 Rock’ facility in New York. In both London and New York, ProMedia Carbon will perform transcoding of content on the MediaGrid systems. An Avid Interplay media asset management system will provide access to proxy versions of newly captured content for shot list creation, as well as extensive live logs and stats, scoring, and timing information embedded as metadata. The resulting shot lists will be sent out to distribution outlets or delivered to edit rooms when needed for broadcast. In addition to the MediaGrid and ProMedia Carbon systems at the IBC and 30 Rock, NBC Olympics will use 72TB MediaGrid systems along with ProMedia Carbon transcoders at the three largest venues – track and field, gymnastics, and swimming — integrated with EVS XT servers to offload content over a 1Gbps connection, enabling the broadcaster to keep event footage readily available over the course of the competition. “Overall, MediaGrid will store thousands of hours of HD content during the Olympics,” said Adams. “By integrating with numerous production platforms, MediaGrid supports NBC’s file-based workflow, reducing the resources, personnel, and time required to deliver high-quality media over multiple viewing platforms.” www.harmonicinc.com

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