Live From Super Bowl LVI: AVS Tackles RF Camera, Aerial Needs

Randy Hermes founded AVS (now a part of NEP) 40 years ago and since then the company has played a big role in all sorts of big-time sports worldwide. This past weekend it was Super Bowl LVI and with AVS’s home facility less than 45 minutes away (on a good day) the 18-member AVS Team led by Michael Ribas had more time to set up the truck in the shop and make sure all the gear was in tip-top shape.

Randy Hermes at Super Bowl LVI where AVS had 28 RF cameras deployed.

“Normally it’s a six day trip but here we just left in the morning and started setting up later that day,” he says.

Hermes says AVS had 28 RF cameras at the Super Bowl and also provided seven return video paths, three prompter paths, and the RF data for the augmented reality wireless Steadicam during the pre-game and game.

“We did both the RF for that as well as getting the position information back to the compound so that the graphics could be placed properly,” he says. “Overall, the RF environment was great and Loren Sherman, [NFL Frequency Coordinator], did an awesome job coordinating.”

AVS provided RF transmission support for Beverly Hills Aerials.

The use of RF at the Super Bowl also expanded beyond traditional handheld cameras as AVS also handled RF transmission for the Beverly Hills Aerials drone and the Boatcam that was featured on the SoFi Stadium Lake.

“We also had a helicopter that could go anywhere within a 30-mile radius, and it was used for a road trip from the Santa Monica pier to Venice then the LA Coliseum, Grauman’s Chinese Theater, and then to Universal Studios,” says Hermes. “And we did some testing, and it worked all the way out by West Lake Village.”

AVS also handled the live transmission for the Air Force flyover at the start of the game, capturing live shots of the jets in formation.

“It took several trips out to Chino airport to design the custom mount and install the camera, transmitter and antenna into the P-51 warbird,” says Hermes.

Hermes has worked on enough Super Bowls that he has lost track, but one thing remains the same: the quantity of efforts continues to grow.

“AR is a big thing this year and we think that next year it will be a regular thing,” he says of the continual evolution of new norms in production.

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