In many countries around the world, soccer is THE national sport and it’s a source of huge national pride when teams reach the World Cup. On a local level, most large cities have one or more soccer teams, and these teams play a large part of the everyday lives of local citizens. One such local soccer team is Argentina’s Boca Juniors. Hailing from near Buenos Aires, Boca Juniors are extremely popular in the world of soccer, and are the reigning champion of the Recopa Sudamericana title and 23 national championships. The Boca Juniors fame has grown to the point that they are renown around the globe, having won more international cups than any other team in history. The Boca Junior’s home field is Estadio Alberto J. Armando, better known as “La Bombonera.”
Naturally, with such a large fan base, the Boca Junior’s games are televised in Buenos Aires and while the broadcast needs of a regional team seem simple, in reality they are very demanding. Live sports productions, like many other live productions, work without a net and have to be expertly produced as there is no opportunity for another take or to correct a flub in post production. Add to that the complexity of live television broadcast and a very large crowd of fans at the field and watching at home or in the local tavern (and you can imagine the pressure the producers are under)- everything just has to work.
The Boca Junior’s Live Production Challenge
The Boca Juniors team directors had been considering to upgrade La Bombonera’s video production system to include a giant outdoor TV, 4 new cameras for capturing the action, and of course, a video switching system to manage it all. Boca Juniors rely on Pixel Productions, a local video production company, to manage the team’s video production for matches. After extensive research, Pixel Productions owner & producer, Guillermo Peralta selected Datavideo SE-900 and SE-500 switchers to be the heart & soul of its live video productions for Boca Juniors; the SE-500 for permanent installation at La Bombonera, and the SE-900 for mobile production at other venues.
“We chose the Datavideo SE-900 and SE-500 because of all the switchers we considered, these units had the best mix of production quality and ease of use, and fit within our budget” said Mr. Peralta. “I was pleasantly surprised at how easy Datavideo and their local reseller, Megaservice ASDA SRL, were to work with. They understood our needs immediately and recommended the SE-900/SE-500 combo as it met our needs today and even gave us some room to grow.”
Datavideo SE-900 in action at Boca Juniors regional finals match
The Boca Junior’s New Live Production Setup
With the Datavideo SE-500 at the heart of the live production setup at La Bombonera, the production team could easily connect the 4 cameras without any need for converters. Setup starts about 2 hours before a match begins, with the Pixel production team setting up cameras and running cables. The farthest two cable runs are about 200 meters (approx. 656 ft), and the other two about 100 meters (approx 328 ft). Once connected, the producer has preview monitoring for all 4 cameras plus a master output preview, and the ability to add titles and overlay graphics and titles onto the video for on-field production. The SE-500 drives the new giant outdoor screen and injects advertising clips and instant replays, which is handled by a PC computer with a Grass Valley K2 Dyno Replay Controller. The SE-500 also feeds the local cable TV network via a satellite uplink installed there at La Bombonera. Pixel Productions also invested in a Datavideo ITC-100 Intercom System to communicate with camera operators on the field and the rest of the production staff with audio and a multi-colored tally light system so each camera operator receives a signal indicating their camera is about to be switched live.
Pixel Productions also invested in a Datavideo SE-900 that is used in a mobile setup to capture and broadcast other smaller team’s matches in other zones around the city. Having up to 8 inputs and the ability to handle analog as well as digital signals gives the production team additional flexibility at other venues when needed. The PiP (Picture in Picture capability of the SE-900 allows for displaying an instant replay while also displaying the current play.
It’s a great “win” for everyone involved. Fans that are present for matches at La Bombonera are thrilled with the new giant TV display, and fans watching at home are enjoying the game from all the angles afforded by the 4 cameras with instant replay, and with better overall picture quality too. The Pixel Productions staff enjoys working with state of the art Datavideo video production equipment and better on-field communications.
Datavideo offers live video switchers and even complete Mobile Studios that offer powerful features for live sports production that are easy to use and at prices that won’t break the bank. Get the rest of the story at www.datavideo.us/events