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HSE24 goes shopping with Harmonic storage and playout

Germany's HSE24 (Home Shopping Europe) has transitioned four channels onto Harmonic Spectrum and MediaGrid production storage and playout systems.

Germany’s HSE24 (Home Shopping Europe) has transitioned four channels onto a Harmonic Spectrum production storage and playout platform, writes David Fox.

The Harmonic Spectrum media server provides continuous playout for the channels, while a Harmonic MediaGrid active storage system provides post-production storage for recorded on-air content and supports an edit-in-place workflow in post.

“We chose to work with the Harmonic storage and server solutions because we needed a stable playout environment and more robust central storage for our post-production activities,” explained Dieter Baron, vice president, broadcast technical at HSE24.

“The Harmonic systems offer ease of use, scalable capacity, and I/O channels, and the high redundancy and availability critical for 24-hour broadcast operations such as ours. We’ve also used the Harmonic platform to create a highly efficient edit workflow that reduces the time and cost required to turn around programming quickly. The local support has been excellent, as has been the performance of our Harmonic systems.”

HSE24’s channels are available to 40 million households — 36m in Germany, 3m in Austria, and 1m in Switzerland. Its Spectrum server handles playout for the main channel, HSE24, as well as its digital special interest channels, HSE24 Trend and HSE24 Extra, and for a newly launched channel, HSE24 Italy. The server system operates in conjunction with AVECO automation, which allows users to control the server from anywhere on the network.

HSE24 uses the MediaGrid system for central storage, including 19 hours of content from two channels daily, and to support editing with Final Cut Pro systems. Editors can load a file for editing and, after post is complete, quickly save the new file for playout.

“The Harmonic installation at HSE24 demonstrates how our server and storage solutions support fast, efficient production workflows, as well as flexible, reliable playout of edited content,” said Manuel Ferreira, Harmonic’s VP for EMEA Sales, who claimed that the systems’ intuitive operation, reliability, and high performance will maximize uptime, while their scalability and modular design will enable smooth, cost-effective channel expansion.