KMOV-St. Louis Automates HD News Production with Grass Valley Ignite

KMOV, the CBS affiliate in St. Louis, MO, is now on air with an Ignite HD scalable automated production system from Grass Valley for its daily local newscasts, produced in the 1080i.

The Ignite HD system at KMOV includes three M/Es, 16 control ports, and is scalable from 24 to 96 video inputs and 24 to 96 audio inputs. The control room system consists of an integrated Grass Valley Kayak HD video production switcher and audio mixer that allows a single operator to run an entire newscast. Optional video and audio panels are available for those broadcasters, like KMOV, that want the option to employ a manually operated system.

“We’re very attracted to the cost savings that we will realize as a result of installing the Ignite system,” says Walt Nichol, Director of Technology at KMOV.  “We’re the first station to go with control room automation among Belo’s television stations, and based on our success so far, I’m sure we won’t be the last.”

KMOV’s Ignite system went live on Sept. 25. Belo Corp., KMOV’s parent company, is using the Ignite system in the St. Louis market as a proof of concept for its 17 other stations, with a combined reach of 14% of U.S. television households.

“The Grass Valley Ignite system continues to fill a need among today’s broadcasters to maximize their resources and limit operational costs,” says Jeff Rosica, SVP of Grass Valley. “The real benefit we’re seeing is that the Ignite system allows stations to produce more programming, more efficiently and with less on-air technical errors than before, so their competitive position within their market improves significantly.

The installation of the Ignite system at KMOV went smoothly, as the station already had a Kayak HD video production switcher. This was paired with an existing HD robotic camera system, HD servers, HD news editing, and HD graphics platform. They also purchased a Klotz Digital audio mixing system for the Ignite to handle stereo audio feeds.

“Basically, we’re doing everything we did manually before we got the Ignite and the newscasts are running smoothly on-air,” says Nichol. “We do very complex newscasts, so we’re pushing the system to its limits and it is responding very well.”

Later this month, the Ignite system will also be used manually to produce a one-hour local morning show called “Great Day St. Louis,” which airs every weekday.

Among the new Ignite 6.0 software features are: FuseIGNITE 1.1, which supports Grass Valley MediaFUSE 1.1 Content Re-purposing and Multi-distribution System; CG List Preview Support, which allows users of the Ignite CG List to send a load in preview command to graphic devices that support a preview channel (This allows a Chyron HyperX user at KMOV, for example, to load an animated graphic in preview and then take the effect to air in separate commands). There’s also new GPI/GPO Pulse Support, adding the capability to perform high, low, and momentary pulse GPI/GPO functions; and Ignite Serial Driver Re-architecture, facilitating a more stable communication path between Ignite and serial controlled devices.

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