BSI Executes Mobile Coverage of Olympic Marathon Trials

Broadcast Sports, Inc. (BSI) deployed its mobile platform at the U.S. Olympic Trials in Houston, TX last weekend. As part of the coverage for the men’s and women’s marathons, BSI supplied HD wireless services including transmission and control of all live elements. The coverage included two motorcycles with handheld camera operators, two CineFlex cameras on the lead vehicles and one CineFlex camera on a helicopter.

“Our ability to manage RF signals in the digital domain through the use of customized systems allowed us to tackle all the technical hurdles of this event,” said Broadcast Sports’ technical director Clay Underwood. “The production company, Carr-Hughes, was then free to focus on delivering a compelling story with the amazing shots our mobile units were able to provide.”

Within a single system box, BSI provided amplified HD transmission, two channels of bi-directional wireless communication, full remote CCU control of cameras and a long-life battery. By centralizing all these functions, BSI has created a consolidated system providing the full functionality of a wired system in a package that easily goes mobile. These mobile units were installed on BMW R1200 race motorcycles and in the back of the lead race vehicles, two 2012 BMW X5’s, during the marathon.

For this particular event, BSI had to address the challenges of maintaining reliable and robust signals within the confines of the narrow streets and tall buildings throughout downtown Houston. Informed antenna selection paired with educated use of COFDM transmission settings allowed for just the right level of robustness in signals while maintaining a high level of video quality at the end of the chain. To maintain high quality and eliminate the inevitable artifacts from decoding and re-compression, BSI left the transport streams intact throughout the transmission chain.

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