Tieline i-Mix Debuts Australia’s Newest Super 14 Rugby Team
Perth - (March 2006) -A record crowd of over 38,000 rugby fans turned up to Subiaco Oval to support the debut performance of The Western Force, Australia's newest Super 14 Series team.
A sea of blue team caps and shirts replaced the usual sight of Subiaco's gold and blue West Coast Eagles colours proving that WA's starving rugby fans have been waiting for the chance to attach their loyalty to a local team.
Wisdom Sports Media (WSM), a remote sports broadcasting specialist won the rights from News Limited and elected to broadcast the event over 90.5 Sports FM and bring the bone crushing excitement of the first ever World Super 14 Series game to the Australian airwaves.
Wisdom Sports - which have been in professional sports commentary since 2002 and called over 125 WA football league games plus the entire Perth Glory Soccer season chose the Tieline i-Mix to broadcast the Super 14 Western Force game series."
"We had three top commentators Leon Ruri, Ashley Morrison and Andy Aitken plus an effects mic and we were looking for a device which could combine our audio mixing and codec requirements into a single box," said Russell Dower, Proprieter of WSM.
Dower continued: "When I looked at the i-Mix I knew it was perfect for the job. In the past we used an array of mixing equipment plugged into other codecs. For this event, all we had was three headsets, one effects mic, one telephone line and a Tieline i-MIx codec. We even had plenty of room to spread out the call sheets, drinks and snacks for a change."
The game started at 7:05 p.m. and normally they have to get there early for the setup, but with the i-Mix, there was almost nothing to do. They arrived an hour before the gig and began the setup.
First they connected Leon, Ashley and Andy's headsets to inputs 1,2 and 3 and then hung the effects mic from input 5 out of the commentators box window, about 10 feet above the crowd.
"I like the fact the codec has channel on/off buttons in case someone needs to cough," said Dower. "Although we didn't use it at the time I also liked the fact the guys back in the studio could remote control our audio inputs if they felt the mics were getting too hot or cold."
Next they dialed back to the studio and connected first time at 19.2kbps with a line quality of 78%. They then checked the audio send and return paths.
"It sounded great and we were ready to go. There is something gratifying about plugging into an ordinary telephone line and delivering the kind of audio quality we can normally only get over an ISDN line," said Dower. "The 3 hour broadcast connection was flawless and sounded great."
Dower was a big fan of the i-Mix intelligent gain control which allows the commentators to stop worrying about their levels and get on with having some fun.
"Rugby is a game of many short stops and starts. As soon as the ball gets into play there is a few seconds of excitement before around 500 kilos of the opposing team stomps all over the attacker," said Dower. "Audio levels rise and fall quickly and a single satisfactory gain setting without automatic gain control is almost impossible to find."
When the Western Force finally crossed the touchdown line for the first time, Leon and the fans almost lifted the roof off the commentator's box. Dower watched the PPM LEDs on the i-Mix shoot into red and stay there for close to 10 seconds which tells us that the mics were being pushed too hard, but as Dower listened to the off-air feed, it was clear the IGC had cut in and smoothed off the gain attack before the audio could peak into distortion.
Ted Walker from Fremantle FM who is assisting with the WSM coverage of the Rugby said, "The i-Mix really is the sportscasters dream box and the audio quality was excellent. We've used the i-Mix a great deal and we like the fact it is small enough to carry the entire remote kit inside a plane. It's so small, light and easy to carry it can fit it in an overhead bin on the aircraft".
WSM are planning to use the optional ISDN module for away games in New Zealand and South Africa and connect the i-Mix G3 to Telos and Musicam codecs using G.722 to call the games.
For more information about Wisdom Sport Media, please see www.wisdomsportsmedia.com
About Tieline Technology
Tieline Technology (www.tieline.com) is the world's leading supplier of high-quality remote broadcast digital audio codecs. In fact, Tieline derives its name from the popularity of its award-winning codec line as the company changed its corporate moniker in 2001 from Audio Video Communications (AVC) to Tieline Technology. Tieline Technology today is supported by a global distribution network spanning the Americas, Europe, UK, Africa, Asia, Middle East and Australasia.
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