Riverside Television has a wide range of experience in broadcast television in Ireland, working with both a national and an international client base. They focus on providing their clients with a truly personal service using their own talented team and the best technology, both in acquisition and post-production. It was their wish to change the traditional way of acquiring and distributing content that put them in touch with us.
Back in the non-too distant past, the only choice for Outside Broadcasting was to have the expense and logistical challenges of a full OB rig – or use a traditional Ku band SNG vehicle, that could probably only cope with single camera operation. Riverside Television wanted to change this and offer their clients a more flexible and robust way of working.
Back in 2013 they approached Dawson and shared their vision of creating a vehicle that not only allowed them to stream live content, but also offered the flexibility and resources of a traditional OB. The only catch – it all needed to fit within the confines of a Mercedes Sprinter!
Cyril O’Regan, Managing Director of Riverside Television added “we were looking for a new and secure way of delivering live news and other content to our clients. We wanted a satellite service that offered mobility and reliability, along with full HD multi camera and edit facilities for sports, events and news production.”
After compiling their wish list, Riverside Television came to us to see if we could help. Their requirements fitted perfectly with our experience in vehicle integration and our mobile KA-sat antenna solutions. Dawson’s Eutelsat type approved GC-Zero 70K Ka band antenna would provide Riverside with an end-to-end live broadcast transmission solution. As our antenna is one of the lightest and fastest auto pointing in the industry, it would enable Riverside to stream live IP data or uplink full broadcast quality HD content directly to their clients using Eutelsat KaSat satellite technology and traditional IP connectivity for the final mile.
With regard to the ‘inside’ – We were very excited to hear that Riverside wanted a high end OB feel to the integration work and not an old fashioned SNG truck with multiple wires and corner cutting. Of course, cost was important but it was the quality of the workmanship and our understanding of their requirements that led Riverside to choose Dawson to implement their vision for them.
Ian Dawson, Managing Director, Dawson adds “ it was a real pleasure to work with Riverside Television. We worked very closely with them throughout the process, discussing the best use of space and functionality. We also kept them fully involved in the build process and had continual dialogue with them to make sure everything was to their requirements.”
The vehicle took three months to complete and was given the more personal name of ROB1 as it entered in to Riverside Television’s service. It comprises five HD fibre camera channels with full camera control and power along the fibre. ROB can also handle multi-track audio for live mix to broadcast and for recording for subsequent post production. Using Dawson’s Ka-sat antenna, the camera channels can go direct from tripod or shoulder live to air. The vehicle can also record ISO’s of each camera channel, preview, TX, auxiliary mix and other sources, simultaneously in a variety of industry standard HD codecs that allows for direct to edit post production.
Riverside have used the vehicle for RTE’s ‘The Hit’ and for 18 hours of continuous live television and streaming for TG4’s coverage of ‘FleadhLive’ making full use of the vehicles functionality and flexibility. Cyril O’Regan sums up – “we are extremely happy with the help and support we received from Dawson. The vehicle does exactly what we wanted it to do and we still get excited every time we use it.”