Viewers around the world watched Wimbledon 2019 with NEP UK deploying 15 Calrec consoles at the South West London tennis venue, alongside extensive Calrec networking and routing technology and I/O boxes. An additional three Calrec consoles were used in NEP OB trucks that covered Centre Court, Court One and Court Two.
“We have worked extensively with Calrec over the years; the networking flexibility and easy scalability of their technology were central to the success of this Wimbledon 2019 project,” says Jimmy Parkin, sound engineer, NEP Broadcast Services. “We needed audio operators to be able to easily access any source from any court without having to move anything or plug anything in; any console can ‘talk’ with any other console on the network. We also needed to integrate IP networks with Calrec’s Hydra 2 networking technology and using their interfaces made this very easy. Pre-event offsite planning, using Calrec’s H2O GUI for the Hydra 2 network, meant that we could accurately name and label ports before any hardware was connected.”
For the second year, the host broadcaster was Wimbledon Broadcast Services (WBS). The video network was all IP (SMPTE ST2110) with Calrec consoles connected to this host broadcast network. Eleven Calrec consoles – 10 Summa and one Brio – were deployed across this, including consoles for the Wimbledon Channel and the media center.
In addition, NEP worked with a major U.S. broadcaster for its coverage, including streaming, using an additional three Calrec consoles – two Artemis and one Brio – in the network’s three control rooms.
“It worked seamlessly; the way that Calrec’s technology allows resources to appear on a network, and then how effortless it was to move those resources across the network, made our life so much simpler,” continues Parkin. “Adding additional I/O boxes was really easy, too. This was a very complex project, but we were working with good people and great technology.”
“We have a longstanding relationship with NEP, having worked with them on many large-scale projects. Wimbledon is such a massive sporting event and we’re very proud of what our technology helped NEP to achieve,” says Andy Birkinshaw, international sales manager, Calrec. “We will continue to see mixed IP/proprietary environments, with this being a clear example of how our technology works in such a complex scenario.”