With a presence at virtually every major televised sporting event in America, FOX Sports and Game Creek Video have the hardest working teams in broadcasting. A cast and crew of hundreds come together to turn out the programming millions of viewers see every week including NASCAR, NFL Football, UFC, FIFA World Cup and MLB. With the successful debut of FOX Sports 1, a 24-hour sports network, the number of live broadcasts has vastly increased. To accommodate the growth, FOX Sports needed to boost its production capabilities.
So it turned to Studio Network Solutions (SNS).
Longtime FOX Sports partner Game Creek Video, a New Hampshire based high- definition mobile production company, has five branded FX HD trucks providing all the remote production for FOX Sports’ live sporting events.
The five FOX Sports trucks are 53′ expanding-side high-definition production units and are collectively equipped with audio, video, replay, transmission, production, graphics, tape release/sub-switchers, two Final Cut edit rooms, producer work areas, maintenance, storage, and an HD viewing room. Additionally, each truck comes staffed with a production manager and at least one engineer.
“Having SNS EVO in place has been a huge advantage,” stated Keith Martin, Engineer, FX HD, Game Creek Video. “Because everything is happening live we are constantly in a time crunch for a quick turnaround of material. Utilizing the 10GbE ports on the EVO, we can get the whole EVS network in sync as fast as possible and easily share files back and forth between the editors and the replay rooms.”
Martin was the first one to use EVO and immediately incorporated it into the daily workflow of the FOX Sports fleet post unit truck. All of the trucks use an EVS replay system. In the edit truck, Mac Pros, iMacs and laptops connect over 10GbE and 1GbE Ethernet to access a wide range of source material including baseband video capture, on-site file ingest, and remote file ingest via WAN connections to the home base studio in Los Angeles.
On any given broadcast, multiple Final Cut editors are needed to quickly and often on-the-fly create packages and bumpers from source material received by the broadcasting team that are then included in the broadcasts. SNS EVO Shared Storage Server enables multiple editors, centralized ingest, and transcoding. EVO is then used to deliver the finished content back to the main broadcast truck where Game Creek Video’s system automation flags the files to be broadcast on air.
Three of the Fox trucks are dedicated to the NFL and two more are added for NASCAR. Although the NFL’s “Big Game” is the largest broadcast all year with over 50 cameras and 22 replay sources, it’s NASCAR that dominates the year for FOX Sports and Game Creek Video with its 20 week season and the most production heavy shows every week.
“For the Daytona 500, we knew we were going to have more content to edit and offload, with a quicker turnaround,” explained Martin. “We added a second editor for B roll and offloading, two dedicated edit machines instead of one, and a third for transcoding footage from the Sony 4K and RED Epic cameras. We rely heavily on SNS EVO to serve as the gateway between the post team and the broadcast truck. The editors will receive files from the replay team and then quickly push finished projects back for broadcast. So mapping out a workflow that could handle this was key.”
For the NFC Championship game and Daytona 500, SNS provided a Production and Workflow Specialist onsite to evaluate their ingest and transcoding processes and create a customized workflow that will continue to bridge the gap between the post and broadcast teams. As the demand for live production content continues to grow, FOX Sports will stay on top of its game.
If there’s any doubt as to just how much it takes to produce one broadcast, check out the Best of 2013 Video the Verge put out about FOX Sports and Game Greek Video, “Inside the Control Room: Turning NFL Football into Primetime Television“.
“Today, there’s a huge demand for the highest level of live production possible,” remarked Martin. “FOX Sports and Game Creek Video have the reputation of delivering the best quality in live sports broadcasting. And we want to keep it that way. That’s why we chose SNS EVO.”
For more information about FX HD and Game Creek Video visit, www.gamecreekvideo.com
About FOX Sports
FOX Sports is the broadcast outlet of FOX Broadcasting Company (FOX). As America’s top-rated network for sports for 16 straight years (1997-2012), FOX Sports boasts rights agreements with each of the nation’s highest-rated sports. FOX Sports is the exclusive national over-the-air television rights holder for Major League Baseball, including the All-Star Game, select postseason and World Series (through 2021); the National Football League’s NFC package, including the NFC Championship Game and Super Bowls XLVIII, LI, LIV, LVII (through 2022 season); NASCAR Sprint Cup racing from February through May, including the Daytona 500 (through 2022); Ultimate Fighting Championship (through 2018); the Big Ten Football Championship Games (through 2016); a minimum of eight regular- season Pac-12 football games (through 2022); the Pac-12 football regular season and Championship Game (even years from 2012-22); the Big 12 football regular season (through 2025); the AT&T Cotton Bowl Classic and the UEFA Champions League Final. Since its inception in 1994, FOX Sports has earned 91 Emmy Awards for production excellence. Eric Shanks and John Entz are the Executive Producers of FOX Sports. For the latest sports news, opinion and video, log on to www.FOXSports.com.
About Studio Network Solutions (SNS)
SNS shared storage solutions are at the core of optimized video workflow for professional content creation workgroups worldwide. The SNS EVO shared media storage server combines high-performance with extensive connectivity, including 10Gb/s Ethernet and Fibre Channel. With EVO’s included ShareBrowser asset management software, you can search, index, preview, tag, and verify video and project assets with no additional software required. NAS, SAN, or both at the same time, EVO is designed for online real-time video editing with leading video/audio applications including Avid Media Composer, Adobe Premiere Pro/CC, Final Cut Pro (FCP), Final Cut Pro X (FCPX), DaVinci Resolve, Pro Tools, and others.