Cobham takes on American Ninja Warrior

NAB 2015, Booth: C7412: Cobham Tactical Communications and Surveillance, the RF specialist company, has announced the use of ten simultaneous RF video links comprising of SOLO H.264 ENG Transmitters, SOLO BTX SD Broadcast Transmitters, and PRORXB receive stations, for the upcoming seventh series of American Ninja Warrior, an action-packed series that follows competitors as they tackle a series of challenging obstacle courses, in an attempt to reach qualifying and finals rounds that take place across the United States.

Cobham’s SOLO H.264 ENG Transmitter, provided by Clair Broadcast, which caters to video and audio productions across the globe, with technology and services for broadcast television, is rugged, and for American Ninja Warriors, it needs to be. The SD/HD COFDM digital video transmitter is specifically designed for ENG applications and is equally at home at live events such as concerts, sports and entertainment productions.

This SOLO transmitter docks neatly onto all types of ENG cameras, including the Sony XD’s being used for American Ninja Warrior. Roaming camera operators with hand-held, Solo-equipped cameras closely follow each contestant as they manoeuvre through challenging obstacle courses. The transmitters are also used for on-the-fly interviews produced remotely from the MCR.

Clair Broadcast Vice President of Sales and Service, Erica Bell said, “The SOLO H.264 provides not only good reference monitoring, but a rock-solid, high quality signal to record off of due to its superior encoder processing.”

The increased compression and efficiency of the SOLO HD transmitter’s MPEG4 H.264 encoder offers additional range with the added benefits of small size, low latency and low power consumption. HD transmission is achieved at only 60 percent of the bit-rate that conventional MPEG2 systems require. The unit is also able to transmit images in a non-line of sight environment up to 1km and can achieve even further range with an optional clip-on booster.

These SOLO’s transmit images to a Cobham PRORXB receive station in the master control room, for director to treat as a live show. Video transmissions received by the PRORXB are sent to the engineering core for ISO record and line cut. The production team is also using Cobham technology to transmit four channels of wireless paint systems for video control.

Cobham’s 2RU PRORXB wireless receiver platform is a feature-rich COFDM receiver/decoder, designed to work with the next generation of H.264 wireless camera systems. Designed specifically for the demanding broadcast market, the PRORXB ensures that video is recovered free from the distortions typically associated with fading and multipath interference.

Cobham Head of Broadcast Sales, JP Delport said, “Smaller, lighter and extremely robust wireless transmission systems are having a major impact on live or as-live events. The freedom that SOLO provides to American Ninja Warrior producers is highly valuable because it gives camera operators the ability to follow the action as closely as possible and maintain an HD signal without dropping a frame, which in turn provides compelling new options for directors.”

The new season of American Ninja Warrior premiers May 25.

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