About -- Thames Valley
REPORT FROM RTS TVC NAB REVIEW - Wednesday 15th May 2013
NAB review: looking at the big picture
Report from RTS Thames Valley Centre’s NAB Review by PR Agency Red Lorry Yellow Lorry
The latest Royal Television Society event brought together a stellar broadcast batting line-up to reflect on the key themes of NAB 2013. More importantly the panelists, skillfully umpired by Dick Hobbs, also looked forward – at the physical and metaphorical big picture.
And NAB was all about the big picture – 4K, 8K, Super Hi-Vision; the technical and business realities of producing in 4K, delivering it, and crucially, persuading the real drivers of our industry – consumers – that they wanted it. But was it another false dawn likely to disappear down the 3D plughole, or a very real commercial opportunity for broadcasters and content owners? With 3D noticeable by its absence – indeed the redoubtable David Austerberry of Broadcast Engineering mentioned he saw only one person wearing 3D glasses in the whole of NAB – now was the chance for 4K to step up.
All agreed that 4K stood a fighting chance to succeed where 3D failed. No need for separate crews and productions, a mandate from the FIFA World Cup to shoot and display in 4K, and far more genuine business opportunities for broadcasters – especially in sports.
The challenge then becomes how to manage and deliver all this extra high-resolution big data. The big-hitting Jan Eveleens felt Axon had the answer, and used NAB to sound the death knell for SDI and usher in the benefits to broadcasters of a ‘media over IT networks’ Audio Video Bridging (AVB) future. All agreed that IP is changing everything.
Put simply, broadcasters and manufacturers alike need to be more agile. The business of broadcasting has radically changed – unlike the good old days broadcasters simply can’t make five to ten-year business and equipment ROI plans. Flexibility is the new watchword.
Enter our nebulous white fluffy friend, the cloud, neatly described by John Nemeth of Elemental Technologies as a ‘reservoir of resources.’ There was a real sense that cloud-based solutions had lost their fluffiness. John Ive from the IABM counted 73 such solutions at the show!
As Paul Glasgow of ChyronHego pointed out, NAB 2013 was the year when cloud became a business issue rather than a technical one. The early concerns about security and reliability were fast disappearing into the ether. The discussions are now more about what you can use the cloud for. David Austerberry highlighted cloud sweet spots as ‘resources on tap’ for short-term Olympics style projects and a cheaper and easier entry to market for broadcasters looking to launch new services. Basically the cash-flow benefits of Opex v Capex. The shift to the cloud was amply illustrated by a cheeky anecdote doing the rounds at the show – Avid Everywhere, Adobe Anywhere and Apple Nowhere!
The good news…all the panelists agreed there seemed to be a renewed buzz around the show, with increased visitor numbers this year (if you believe NAB’s creative counting), and importantly with money to spend. But as Russell Grute of Broadcast Innovation pointed out, traditional broadcasting is changing rapidly and service providers are entering the fray and disrupting the cosy broadcast market.
The business of broadcasting has changed beyond recognition. Broadcasters and vendors have to adapt their business models to find new ways to make money, as Michael Grotticelli of Broadcast Engineering succinctly describes. Now that’s the real bottom line.
The Society has Regional Centres, each running its own programme of lectures, workshops, masterclasses and awards throughout the year.
The Thames Valley Centre was formed in 1991 in response to a considerable demand for a local centre from RTS members living in and around the Reading and Newbury areas.
The Centre enjoys a current membership of over 300 drawn mostly from the manufacturing companies in the area.
As the Thames Valley Centre lies in the centre of the largest concentration of television technology manufacturing companies in the country, its membership has a strong technological bias. This is reflected in the subjects chosen by the Centre for its regular meetings and for its annual Technical Colloquium. Topics that impact the commercial aspects of television as well as reviews of major industry exhibitions are also covered.
Centre meetings are usually held at the Pincents Manor Hotel, Pincents Lane, Calcot, Reading, Berkshire RG31 4UQ. On occasions, Centre meetings are hosted by local companies in and around Newbury and Reading. These meetings are free.
As well as an annual series of lectures on subjects of technical, creative and general interest the Centre presents an all-day Technical Colloquium and has a strong events calendar which includes an Annual Dinner Dance and local visits. Members and non-members are welcome at all events.
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Thames Valley Centre Committee
Chairman: Jennie Evans, Manor Marketing
Acting Honorary Secretary: Neil Dormand
Honorary Treasurer: Derek Owen
Events Committee Chairman: Tony Orme
Committee Member: Gregory Bensberg, Ofcom
Committee Member: Robin Lince, itTV Ltd
Committee Member: Penny Westlake, SMACH Ltd.
Committee Member: Andy Cooper, Cooper Media Ltd
Committee Member: Gerard Phillips, Snell
Committee Member: John Ive, IABM
Committee Member: Matthew Robbins, TV-Bay
Committee Member: Pete Ramsay, AV3
Committee Member: Dave Bancroft, Bancroft Technical Consulting
Committee Member: Patrick Woolcocks