NEP Sends Massive Facilities and Support Infrastructure to the Super Bowl
“We are thrilled to be supporting broadcasts at the Super Bowl once again,” said Mike Werteen, co-president of NEP’s US Mobile Unit operations. “If viewing habits remain true, this event will again be the most watched television show of 2015. It’s an incredible responsibility we have, supporting our broadcast and cable partners on a production of this size and scale, and we embrace the challenge. Some of our staff on site have been supporting Super Bowls for literally decades. Having that much experience at an event this large makes an incredible difference.”
From a technical perspective, NEP’s ND1 will play a pivotal role, capping off its first season as the home for the Sunday Night Football production team with arguably the world’s biggest single-day sports event of 2015.
ND1 comprises four interconnected trailers, with much of the production work itself centered on the Grass Valley Kayenne Elite 9M/E production switcher, Calrec Artemis and Apollo audio consoles, 32 Sony HDC2500 cameras, Canon lenses, and more than 100 channels of EVS recording capability via 14 EVS XT3 replay stations within a single production trailer. The Super Bowl will see the EVS complement expand to 19 and the number of cameras to more than 50 for game coverage.
In terms of who works where, the A unit is where the front bench is located, as well as the EIC and two engineering staffers and 11 graphics staffers, who will use ChyronHego Lyric graphics software on the Mosaic platform (first used by NBC Olympics in Sochi, so that, too, is new this season).
The B unit is home to the audio mix and submix areas as well as to camera shading and all the major components, including a massive Evertz Magnum routing switcher that connects all the trucks and devices and the EVS replay servers. From a design standpoint, housing all the electronics in one unit enables greater energy efficiencies in heating, air conditioning, and ventilation. And, from an audio perspective, it allows noise-generating equipment to be isolated from the mixing rooms.
The C unit houses the 14 replay operators, ultra-slo-mo operations, and room to haul equipment, including cameras, microphones, and cables. Individual operators, said Levine, will have their own volume and lighting controls and can also move to any other of the 14 positions to work via the Thinklogical KVM router.
The D unit is a straight-sided trailer housing two Apple Final Cut Pro edit rooms, sports media, RF, and transmission. There are 10 outbound and inbound paths (both satellite and fiber) and Gigabit Ethernet, allowing content to be transported as EVS files to and from NBC’s production facility in Stamford, CT, as well as to the NBC playout facility in Englewood Cliffs, NJ. In addition, each individual camera feed and associated microphones will be available to the production team in Stamford for use during pre/postgame coverage.
“With our scale, we are also able to put a tremendous amount of firepower behind this event,” adds NEP US Mobile Unit’s Co-President, Glen Levine. “We have the fleet to provide 24 trailers, the resources to provide all of the cable and equipment, the staff to provide a huge engineering and technical support infrastructure, we can loop in the manufacturers for on-site support, and most importantly, bring the most experience in the industry.”
NEP began supporting broadcasts of the Super Bowl in the 1980’s. In 1996, they were the sole broadcast facilities provider for game coverage for the first time. Since then, they have had a presence at every single Super Bowl - supporting main game coverage all but four years and the halftime show most years as well.
For over 30 years, NEP has been delivering expertly engineered solutions for outside broadcast, studio production, video display and host broadcasting. With a worldwide network that includes the most advanced equipment and largest fleet of mobile units available, as well as global production studios to suit every genre, our talented team of experts work together to deliver superior service to every client. Driven by our passion, with a focus on innovation, NEP has supported productions in over 40 countries on all seven continents, and has set the industry standard for excellence.