Riedel Communications Supports French National Assembly With MediorNet Network, BBC Radio With Bolero Wireless System

The French National Assembly has installed a comprehensive, all-fiber signal distribution and communications backbone based on Riedel Communications solutions. Also, the company’s Bolero wireless intercom and Artist digital matrix intercom system are playing a unique role in BBC Radio’s coverage of a global, open-wheel auto racing series.

French National Assembly Deploys Comprehensive Signal/Communications Backbone Based on Riedel MediorNet
Riedel’s MediorNet real-time media network provides redundant and decentralized signal routing and transport throughout the French National Assembly’s Paris facilities. Tightly integrated with MediorNet, Riedel’s Artist digital matrix intercom system and Bolero wireless intercom provide crystal-clear and reliable communications for the French National Assembly staff.

“Riedel’s MediorNet is a radical departure from the traditional approach to signal transport, which is built around a central router and third-party transport and processing devices. Instead, the decentralized approach of MediorNet provides massive benefits including redundancy, flexibility, and the ability to scale the system as our needs dictate,” says Christian Castelli, Audiovisual System Engineer at the French National Assembly. “For those reasons, MediorNet was the perfect choice to meet our complex media distribution and communications requirements.”

The deployment of this agile infrastructure was a core component in the complete upgrade of the audio/visual master control room at the French National Assembly, including connectivity with audio/visual terminals located everywhere in and outside the buildings. This backbone keeps evolving with the expansion of a new multi-position video control room and the connection of further satellite commission rooms. The Riedel MediorNet backbone consists of four MetroN core routers, three MediorNet Modular mainframes, more than 30 MicroN high-density media distribution network devices, and 25 Compact stageboxes. Deployed in a decentralized configuration, the MediorNet components ensure fully redundant distribution of all audio/video and communications signals throughout the buildings.

The robust intercom system consists of an Artist 128 mainframe with control provided by Riedel RSP-2318 SmartPanel multifunctional user interfaces. The Artist mainframe also provides access points to all Bolero wireless belt packs.

“It’s an honor to welcome a customer as prestigious as the French National Assembly to our roster of high-profile deployments,” says Franck Berger, General Manager for France and Africa at Riedel Communications. “This installation is a tremendous use case for Riedel that highlights perfectly the benefits of our MediorNet decentralized approach. We’re proud of the key role Riedel and MediorNet are playing to handle all of the French National Assembly’s transport, routing, processing, and communications requirements, all on a single infrastructure.”

Bolero Wireless Intercom Brings Auto Racing Home for BBC Radio Listeners
The auto racing series covers a significant part of the calendar year and moves back and forth across the globe between the series start in Australia and its finish in Abu Dhabi. USP Content, a multiplatform production company based in London, latched onto the use of Bolero as a cost-effective means of delivering each race to BBC Radio listeners without having to deploy extensive technical and production staff at each location and without having to sacrifice audio quality.

For races in Europe, USP Content sends its presenters for BBC Radio to the track, where a Riedel Artist 64 digital matrix intercom frame connects via managed Multiprotocol Label Switching (MPLS) circuits to Frankfurt and then via VPN on to another Artist frame in London. The presenters use Bolero for remote interviews on pit row and elsewhere around the circuit. For race events beyond Europe, the presenters stay at home in London and only the Bolero equipment and a few staff make the longer journeys.

“Dispatching a technical crew to cover all of the events of the racing series would present a daunting cost to even large radio broadcasters such as the BBC,” says Chessie Bent, Field Producer, USP Content. “We were looking for a more efficient and cost-effective way to cover the entire race circuit, but remote broadcasting was too challenging using equipment from several vendors and sources. Now, Riedel’s Bolero has completely changed the way we work — no more worries about complex cabling, buying licenses, carrying antennas, or painful frequency coordination. Plus, the amazing sound quality of the Bolero system ensures clear, broadcast-quality audio at all times.”

Use of the Bolero intercom has made a marked improvement for the USP Content crew. Bent and her presenter, Jennie Gow, previously relied on a multi-vendor, high-powered RF wireless system with a cumbersome antenna that had to be physically carried around along with the other gear. Since one Bolero antenna can cover the entire pit and backstage area of a race, Bent and Gow are free to roam around and grab interviews with drivers and celebrities at will. Equipped with a Bolero beltpack and noise-isolating MAX headset, Gow simply presses the ON button to begin an interview. The beltpack is fitted with a Y-cord that enables the use of a high-quality interview mic; at the same time, Gow is able to use the MAX headset to take direction from Bent.

“This clever and innovative use of Bolero is a great demonstration of its built-in flexibility to support any workflow,” says Jakob Stellbrinck, Motorsports Solutions Specialist at Riedel. “Bolero’s ease of use, simplicity of setup, and light weight have made it a game-changer for USP Content’s remote reporting for BBC Radio. Bolero has more than met USP Content’s expectations by delivering outstanding sound quality and ensuring smooth and agile productions in the highly demanding racing environment.”

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