Formula 1 Remote Revolution

In Riedel we trust – partnering with _wige MEDIA and CBC (Cologne Broadcasting Center), RTL Television has realized its very first full remote production with MediorNet

Formula 1 The Past

Previously, RTL Television, had a full production team on site at the race track. The world feed, produced by F1 host broadcaster Formula One Management (FOM) and completed by RTL Television’s own production team on site, resulted in a fully-produced program that was sent via Riedel’s RiLink Global Fiber Service over bidirectional links between the race circuits and the broadcast station in Cologne.

» Now we do have way more opportunities to produce and edit simultaneously than ever before, while having increased production reliability. Due to the ability to produce and edit in our Cologne headquarters, we do have instant access to our content library to enrich our reports. «

Stefan Flügge, head of sports production at RTL Television

Formula 1 A New Start

A good part of RTL Television’s production team on-site now remains in Cologne - including vision and sound control, along with editing suites and replay servers. On location are presenters, reporters and editors, cameramen, and technicians. The on-site production now includes two wireless cameras and live commentary, transmitting three feeds (plus three return video feeds) besides the host program feed to Cologne. All signals for the rights holder broadcasters are handed over by FOM.

Formula 1 Groundbreaking Remote Production

This groundbreaking remote production concept is supported by a MediorNet on-site backbone, providing complete and de-centralized router functionality and consisting of six MediorNet MicroN high-density signal distribution network devices and two MediorNet Compact frames. MediorNet nodes are located at the TV compound, paddock, and commentary position. The MediorNet infrastructure also provides a perfect connection for the wireless camera receiving infrastructure.

Formula 1 MediorWorks Workflow

MediorWorks software allows for integration and management of any third party codecs (H.264 in this case) within the MediorNet infrastructure. Thanks to trunking, the MediorNet backbone could be managed remotely from RTL’s Cologne facilities, where also communications is supported via an Artist intercom system. The production team in Cologne is able to configure and operate Artist comms and to collaborate seamlessly with the on-site in crew in Melbourne (or anywhere) using remote resources. Thanks to this Artist deployment, the production team working in Cologne enjoyed access to all radio communications on-site.

Formula 1 The Result

Despite the worst-case distance of Melbourne-Cologne-Melbourne, none of the production team members noticed that a big part of the production was realized in Cologne. Also, increased bandwidth from 30MBit/s to 170 MBit/s, made this production model very similar to the on-the-ground production model RTL Television had previously used. Finally, the system is already poised for 4K and IP workflows.