Last fall, a power surge at the St. Charles (Mo.) Family Arena shorted out most of the video equipment. But the county-owned 10,000-seat arena—and the associated public access channel—got the video back in service in a few weeks, centered on an Overture2 MD (multi-definition) switcher from Echolab.
Echolab Overture2 MD
The Overture2 MD video production feeds cable broadcasts of arena events, live video and video replay on the scoreboard, streaming video for the Web, and pay-per-view. It was quickly used for events including a three-night rodeo, motorcycle ice racing, indoor football, and men's and women's basketball.
"I am not only very impressed with the switcher but also with the quality of Echolab as a company," said Jack Gamble, video production manager for the St. Charles Family Arena. "Because of the circumstances, we were installing the equipment over the holidays, and even when I had a question on a Sunday night in late December, I got the help I needed within hours. The company's quality is equally represented by the Overture's design. I admit I'm a techno-nerd, and it immediately impressed me that the video cards within the chassis are mounted vertically, which helps in heat dispersal, promoting durability. Not every company does it that way, and to me it's a sign of thoughtful engineering."
St. Charles County chose the Overture2 MD switcher because of features, price and because it was able to accommodate the arena's mixture of legacy HD and SD cameras and replay equipment without requiring external conversion equipment, according to Echolab. Because the switcher features 16 routable outputs, its deployment eliminated the need for a third-party router that had been a part of the old system.
The Overture2 MD switcher is linked to a computer using Photoshop and other Adobe products, enabling an in-house graphics designer to create static and animated lower-thirds using full HD (1920x1080) motion graphics.