2018 NAB Show Event Channel

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Sacramento’s Golden 1 Center Upgrades Production Capabilities to 4K with Grass Valley Technology

The NBA’s Sacramento Kings recently finished their second season at their new home, The Golden 1 Center, which reportedly cost half a billion dollars and features the latest in technology for the enjoyment of fans in attendance. The new technology—much of it supplied by Grass Valley—includes hundreds of 4K displays throughout the venue and a giant scoreboard with equally impressive (and immersive) images.

The project required a close collaboration between the Sacramento Kings, Grass Valley and Diversified, a veteran systems integrator, to engineer and install a series of technology solutions that are used to create and deliver a captivating fan experience.

To help produce content for the multiple screens, Grass Valley was instrumental in providing the necessary camera, replay, production switching, routing, multiviewer and signal processing technology to achieve the owners’ goal of creating an in-venue experience that many say is second to none in the league.

One of the centerpieces of the new facility is a giant Panasonic 4K/UHD video board— the largest of its type in the NBA—that measures more than 84 feet long and runs nearly the entire distance from baseline to baseline. For attendees, high-quality slow-motion replays are an essential part of the experience. To capture and produce the 4K content that drives the video board, the Kings chose Grass Valley because of its integrated solutions.

“The most important thing for us was that we were not willing to make any compromises,” said Brian Plumb, senior director of A/V and production for the Sacramento Kings. “We had a pretty specific idea of what we wanted and we met with a few different suppliers to see how we could make it work. Grass Valley understood our vision and had the right components to make it happen. We’ve been thrilled with the way it all turned out.”

Multiple K2 Dyno controllers and a K2 Summit 3G four-channel HD/SD server handle 4K replays, which are displayed on the giant scoreboard screens.

Multiple K2 Dyno controllers and a K2 Summit 3G four-channel HD/SD server handle 4K replays, which are displayed on the giant scoreboard screens.

The action on the court is captured with six Grass Valley LDX 86 cameras—four of which are equipped with a perpetual GV eLicense for 4K—with one of the cameras providing a reverse-angle feed. Multiple K2 Dyno with a DynoZoom 4K/UHD option and a K2 Summit 3G four-channel HD/SD server handle replays. All content is punched through a Grass Valley Karrera K-Frame video production switcher, driving the 4K production, while several NVision routers paired with Kaleido multiviewers help to manage and move the content throughout the control room and facility.

Plumb and his team continue to refine the process and are looking at a transition to 2SI 4K, which the Karrera switcher will support, to free up more of the M/E channels that are now handling 4K conversion. He is also looking at IP routing in the future to get the benefit of going from 4 wire to 1 wire, and has already begun investigating options for introducing VR into the process.

“Our operators love the easy workflow and file management of the K2 Dyno units for replay,” Plumb said, “we just drop the clips into a common folder and everyone has access. Fans won’t miss any of the action with this replay setup. Everything about this arena is state-of-the-art, so the pressure was on for the broadcast capabilities.”

Grass Valley parent company Belden worked in partnership with the Grass Valley team to supply mission-critical production cabling for the Golden 1 Center’s massive infrastructure. A complete broadcast solution, including armored fiber, racks, wire management and custom assemblies, was designed to ensure signal integrity and maximum reliability while providing resistance to cutting and crushing to prevent downtime or unplanned outages.

Of course, the Golden 1 Center is home to much more than just Sacramento Kings games. The owners are positioning it as a premier event center with the capability to offer video presentation for any occasion, from sports and entertainment to business and education.

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