Signal Distribution at Eurovision Song Contest Delivered by Blackmagic Design

Blackmagic Design announced that all signal distribution at the event areas for this year’s Eurovision Song Contest (ESC), hosted at the Wiener Staatshalle in Vienna, Austria, was delivered via an SDI based live production workflow featuring six Blackmagic Design Smart Videohub routers.

The audiovisual (AV) infrastructure for the annual European wide extravaganza, now in its 60th year, was devised by Vienna based live event specialist Concept Solutions and distributes HD video signals to more than 125 monitors and screens throughout the multi purpose indoor arena.

As well as the main staging hall, where 60 countries competed for the chance to perform in a live two hour televised spectacular, the ESC also had dedicated halls for media, backstage and catering, the judging panel, VIPs and the official ESC delegation. Each was equipped with a multitude of displays and screens to keep attendees up to date and a Smart Videohub 12×12 or 20×20 was assigned to manage video signals for each individual zone. Three video channels produced by the production hub were delivered to screens; the main hall feed for rehearsals, semi finals and the grand finale, an information channel for competitors and an internal communications channel. More than a hundred Blackmagic Design Mini Converter SDI-HDMI were also installed throughout the arena’s SDI infrastructure.

Florian Weber of Concept Solutions explains the rationale for multiple video routers: “The hall based complex meant that each zone within the event were quite distinct, both in terms of purpose and location, and we had to balance this with a reliable, failsafe audiovisual workflow that would perform perfectly throughout weeks of rehearsals and performances. Assigning a router to each hall gave us a simple and clear structure for our signal distribution, and any issues would be quick to spot and rectify during a live production. The SDI infrastructure ensures we had reliable signal path throughout the complex that meets industry standards.”

“Each area was also distinct in terms of what the people in that particular room require in terms of information, so we have the ability to tailor the content they are watching depending on their needs. For example, the media room needed to get a real sense of the main hall events, whereas the backstage areas required a more varied flow of information and entertainment to keep the show running smoothly at all times. We rely on the Smart Videohub for many of our live events, and we knew that they would be the most effective choice for staging such a major spectacle.”

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