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Calrec Audio Press

Calrec Audio Press
Calrec is a leading designer and supplier of audio broadcast mixing equipment, relied on by the world’s most successful broadcasters. Formed as a microphone manufacturer in 1964, Calrec’s reputation for build quality, reliability and audio performance has made it an industry benchmark across the world.

World’s fastest growing spectator sport levels up with Calrec

With professional gamers gaining celebrity recognition and passionate audiences totaling more than 200 million worldwide, eSports is the next big wave of sports production. As eSports rises in popularity, larger, more complex tournaments and broadcasts are being produced, resulting in companies looking at more traditional broadcast solutions, such as those provided by Calrec Audio. Calrec’s high-quality audio consoles help customers – such as EA Sports, Full Sail University, OGN and more – produce and support engaging, immersive content for an industry that will continue to grow into the future.

“Mixing for eSports is dramatically different than live sports,” explains Jeri Palumbo, an A1 who has worked for many different broadcasters, covering a wide array of professional sports, including gaming. “There is a significant difference in the air-time between the two…but, live sports is also somewhat predictable, whereas eSports is like the wild west. As the A1, you are tasked with figuring out a way to collect all the audio into one source. For one recent eSports project, I had 12 layers of 32 channels on a Calrec Artemis, and I layered every single element that was in the studio. In eSports, I often do a direct out 5.1 from the Calrec, which allows me to send a 5.1 out down one path instead of having to break it out into an individual-pack stems…for me, that’s a brilliant option.”

Calrec’s range of consoles are designed to fit the requirements of any eSports event or tournament. From the smaller Brio12 to the top-of-the-range Apollo console, there is a desk for any size and complexity, with the added capability of easily expanding and networking if/when the need arises.

Calrec’s reputation for reliability, ease-of-use, customer support and build quality in the broadcast and outside broadcast world is proving very appealing to eSports companies. When Full Sail University unveiled its $6 million, 11,000-plus-square-foot eSports arena named “The Fortress,” the school ensured it was equipped with the latest technologies and products. Included among these was Calrec’s Brio36 console outfitted with Dante I/O, MADI and Waves cards. According to Vincent Lepore, Full Sail’s director of event technical operations, “Full Sail has numerous Calrec consoles around the campus, so we were really comfortable with Calrec and what they do for a broadcast mix.”

Additionally, Riot Games has implemented Calrec’s RP1 remote broadcast mixing system and Artemis mixing consoles to create a ground-breaking workflow that overcomes the three major challenges of “at-home” production – latency, transport and control. For Riot, solutions manufacturers such as Calrec are making the necessary technologies more accessible.

“Our workflow is unique to each game,” says Matthew Donovan, broadcast engineering manager at Riot’s West L.A. production facility. “You have to know the game, the capabilities and the limitations, and be embedded with the developers to be able to visually represent that game in an engaging way for its fans. [With Calrec,] things that were more challenging are now a lot easier to accomplish.”

Calrec’s Brio has also proven to be especially beneficial to eSports production for Freelance Audio Engineer Lance Gordon, co-owner of Soundcheck Technologies. “The beauty of Calrec consoles is that they are easy to figure out, especially if you have an audio background and even more so if you have previous experience with any Calrec,” he says. “Calrec is my go-to console; I know the flow, so when something is requested, I am able to deliver it fast. Those of us in the eSports world like Calrec because we know how to use it, and how the compressors and EQ respond, so we can get more creative. I’m a big Calrec fan.”

While some broadcast consoles focus on functionality at the expense of sonic quality, Calrec has always prioritised both. “Calrec’s consoles all have a suite of broadcast-specific features to make mixing smooth and seamless,” says Dave Letson, vice president of sales, Calrec. “Automixers attenuate any number of mono inputs, allowing mic bleed and room noise to be easily controlled. Autofaders allow for GPIO triggers from vision switchers to quickly change audio sources in fast-paced, high-action eSports productions, which constantly swap between the four to 16 competitors in any given event.”

Calrec continues push for true IP interoperability passing the recent JT-NM Interop test

Calrec announced that it has passed the recent JT-NM Interop – Joint Task Force on Networked Media – IP test and is now included as part of the JT-NM Tested Catalogue, which was published at IBC 2019.

Pete Walker, Senior Product Manager with Calrec, says, “What the JT-NM is doing – backed by VSF, SMPTE, AMWA and the EBU – is tremendously important in terms of continuing the push to true IP interoperability. It includes NMOS, which we believe is vital as a standardised mechanism for not only discovery/advertisement of IP technologies connected to a network alongside IP streams, but also connection management from a centralised point. This means operators do not have to log in to each device on a network to configure its connections, but instead have a user-friendly UI capable of dynamically routing streams between devices from different manufacturers.”

The JT-NM Tested program is designed to provide those who want to deploy IP technologies with insight into how respective technologies interoperate and how they adhere to the relevant SMPTE standards. The latest test took place in August, with Calrec passing the testing required for ST2110 and ST2022-7 categories with flying colours.

Walker adds, “To unlock the full potential of IP and give broadcasters the workflows, costs and efficiency savings they need to compete in the modern era, we must all work together, fully and properly implementing the agreed standards to provide proven multi-vendor systems that are easy for operational staff to use. At Calrec we are working with our partners and following the JT-NM roadmap – our Type R, IP-native radio system being a prime example – working towards the ultimate goals of making life better for our customers.”

Calrec reveals the new revolution in radio – Type R

Type R is a new modular, expandable, IP-based radio system from Calrec Audio (NAB Booth C7408), which utilises standard networking technology and combines it with configurable soft panels that can be tailored to operator needs.

Type R’s physical control system consists of three slimline panels: a fader panel, a large soft panel and a small soft panel. Each is compatible with COTS hardware and powered over Ethernet to keep cabling to a minimum.

Type R has a simple 2U core at its heart with integrated I/O resources to get customers up and running immediately. A single core can power up to three independent mixing environments, with no sharing of DSP resources. Whether used as independent studio consoles, microphone processors or utility mixing, the ability to use multiple mixing engines combined with the flexibility of an AES67 compatible network provides enough flexibility to keep pace with radio’s changing requirements.

The touch-screen soft panels are designed around simple and colourful control elements and can easily be customised as multi-function panels. Soft panels can be utilised in either landscape or portrait formats and used to provide adaptable and specific functionality for talent, while ensuring overall control is maintained by the station technical team. This functionality can be quickly changed from show-to-show using simple memory loads and can be tailored to fit the needs of the talent.

Fader panels are small, sleek and simple, with six faders and immediate access to essential controls. Fader panels can be added or removed as simply as plugging or unplugging an Ethernet cable, creating a radio infrastructure that is easily expandable, and making upgrades a breeze.

“Type R is a thoroughly modern and customer-focused radio broadcast system that adapts to a station’s needs as its requirements evolve,” says Henry Goodman, director of Product Management, Calrec Audio. “It provides simple customisation across established networks, open control protocols and surface personalisation. With a native IP backbone, Type R provides an infrastructure for future expansion. It guarantees stations are not only able to keep pace with changing demands, they are also able to use its capabilities to ignite their audiences with new and innovative programming.”

Broadcast-specific control is clear and concise across the system. Bussing, including the creation of mix-minus feeds, is quick to assign, while EQ and dynamics control is clear and fast. It is a pure radio platform designed for a fast-paced modern environment.

In keeping with Calrec’s reputation, Type R is a resilient console system designed for reliable professional use, with all the requisite power, function and scalability to keep radio stations on-air for many years to come. Stop by Booth C7408 at NAB 2018 to be the first to see this new radio console.


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