Springfield, MA United States
WGBY-TV, which bills itself as “Public Television for Western New England,” has a legacy of high technology. For instance, the station, located in Springfield, Massachusetts, and part of PBS Boston flagship station WGBH, became the first television station in New England to produce all of its local programming content in high definition, back in October 2006. Now, WGBY continues that tradition with the installation of a complete Focusrite RedNet system, which vastly increases the capabilities and streamlines the workflow of its two production studios. The system, which consists of six RedNet 4 Mic Preamps with MIDI control, one RedNet 2 16-channel remote-controlled I/O, and one RedNet HD32R 32-Channel Bridge between Dante™ network infrastructure and Pro Tools HD, was designed and integrated by Little Bay Broadcast Services, Inc., of Dover, New Hampshire.
“We were called in to re-do the station’s control room, and we won the bid, in part because RedNet was part of the design,” says David Raynes, President of Little Bay Broadcast Services. Raynes says Dale Pro Audio of New York City served as the project consultant, specifying the systems and platforms for the upgrade, including the RedNet products, which were central to achieving improved workflow and sonic fidelity. The system, including the RedNet products, were sourced through Tim Finnegan at Dale Pro Audio. Little Bay Broadcast Services then did the installation and integration of the entire project, with the system design by Brian Raynes, a Partner in Little Bay Broadcast Services and its design engineer.
“The RedNet system was perfect for getting the Pro Tools system onto the Dante network, and it also means that they are able to put a mic pre stage box literally anywhere in the facility on just a single Cat-6 cable,” David Raynes explains. “RedNet is the reason the overall design is so clean and simple and neat, and at the same time highly functional.” Brian Raynes notes that the inclusion of the RedNet 2 and RedNet 4 units gives the station’s studio engineers significantly greater flexibility in terms of setup and signal routing. “Those are really going to expand their ability to do live bands in the studio,” he says. “But the bigger picture is that RedNet is what it means for their workflow: a couple of cables and that’s it — set it and forget it. Between RedNet and other units on the Dante network, the system is elegant and incredibly dependable. This greatly expands their ability to do music and much more.”
Keith Clark, WGBY’s Director of Local Production & Services, agrees and adds that RedNet has a truly strategic aspect for the station’s long-term plans. “We purchased all the gear with the idea to ‘future proof’ ourselves,” he says, “and we are looking to switch over the way we do most of our productions this summer. RedNet helps us connect to a Dante network for audio, which greatly streamlines how we move audio around the facility.” The RedNet 4 units are loaded onto carts that can be deployed across the station’s two studios as needed, bringing an entirely new level of flexibility to live music broadcasts. Clark has also discussed the RedNet system with many of the area freelance engineers that he works with, who periodically work in the studio for some live-music shows and other productions. “They all said you can’t go wrong with the RedNet gear,” he says. “They’re excited to help us get started in the Focusrite RedNet world.”
Focusrite Novation Inc. President Phil Wagner opines, “We are incredibly pleased to see broadcast customers embrace the capability and flexibility our RedNet audio-over-IP Dante based system provides. WGBY’s use of RedNet is typical for customers taking advantage of common networking technology to get great sound. We are seeing production facilities, composers, broadcast networks, remote trucks and other call letter stations employ RedNet systems with increasing frequency. The adoption rate is rather gratifying, speaking wholly to the robustness of the system and the overall value RedNet provides.”