After Last Year’s Focus on B Units, IMS Productions’ HD3 and HD4 Stand Alone

Last year, IMS Productions served up a B unit to handle the Deportes feed for the new Time Warner Cable regional sports network and a Super B for its IndyCar coverage; this year, the company is rolling out the main course. It recently introduced HD3, a standalone 53-ft. HD expando, which covers the network’s Los Angeles Lakers package without a B unit. In addition, the company also purchased HD4 through its affiliation with Alliance Productions.

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A Grass Valley 5M/E Kayenne K-Frame switcher anchors HD3.

At the heart of HD3, which hit the road in October, is a Grass Valley 5M/E Kayenne K-Frame switcher with 104 inputs and 56 dual outputs. HD3 also features two EVS six-channel ET3 LSM servers, three six-channel XT3 RO servers, and IPDirector; an Evertz 314×314 3G/HD/SD EQX router and 96×96 EMR audio router; and a Calrec Artemis Beam audio console with MADI.

For graphics, Productions Director of Engineering Paul Nijak opted for a Chyron Mosaic Efx XL and Lyric Pro.

“We were one of the first truck companies in the U.S. to do that, and that’s been working out well for us,” he says of the decision to install the Mosaic. “We had a choice to either go with technology that’s proven or to go forward and try something new, and I chose to try something new — to be on the edge of the technology as opposed to behind it.”

Built in conjunction with Gerling & Associates and integrated by Beck Associates, HD3 also boasts 10 Sony HDC-2400L and two Sony HDC-2500L cameras with Canon lenses, two Panasonic HD POV cameras, and an assortment of support equipment.

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Exterior of HD3

By installing the Evertz EQX router and selecting the Sony cameras, IMS Productions built a truck that is 1080p-capable. Although Time Warner Cable does not currently use the truck’s 1080p capabilities, Nijak expects the format to be in demand soon.

“I’m putting it in to future-proof,” he explains. “We’ve had zero requests for it so far; however, I feel that one of these networks is going to go to 1080p quickly, and I don’t know which one. … It’s in there more to future-proof ourselves.”

Earlier this year, IMS Productions purchased a 53-ft. HD expando previously owned by Mansion Mobile. According to Nijak, the decision was mutually beneficial to both sides.

“The Alliance needed this truck to stay a part of its business model,” says Nijak. “Being part of the Alliance, we had the funds and the extra work for it to make sense to purchase it.”

IMS Productions bought the standalone truck in April, changed the exterior, and renamed it HD4; it now supports the company’s workload, covering college football and various one-off productions.

HD4 features a Grass Valley HD Kalypso 4M/E switcher; two EVS six-channel XT2 LSM servers, one four-channel XT2 RO server, and IPDirector (the truck is wired for two additional six-channel EVS replay servers); and Evertz 288×288 HD-SDI router; a Chyron HyperX3; and SSL C100-HD Digital 56-fader audio console. The mobile unit is wired for 11 Grass Valley LDK8000 Elite Worldcams with Canon lenses, capable of shooting in 720p, 1080i, or 24p.