NBC Breaks Records, Develops New Methods for Beijing Olympics Coverage

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Shalbatana

 They could have used Sony's XDcam format, which records a hi-def image and simultaneously a low-res version (in camers) good for sending even through a phone connection.  Perhaps that's what they are using.

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PhynaeusClaw

17TB isn't a lot of space these days. I just saw a 1TB drive online for under $190. Couldn't they just shoot it all in HD for the 5 extra TB it would take??

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Marcus_Soperus

Why not shoot it all in HD? Here are a couple of suggestions: there might be a shortage of HD cameras, and don't forget that most of us don't have access to a reliable HD signal yet (my OTH NBC HD signal from a broadcast tower less than two miles away from my home sometimes looks like they're playing the old "freeze in place" game).

And, the reason NBC's using proxy edits is because the storage capacity is way, waaay ahead of the ability to transport it on a timely basis. Upgrading the network between Beijing and New York for a short-term event just doesn't make sense. What NBC is doing with proxy editing methods is enabling them to spend the money on storage and storage management (which can be easily moved elsewhere when the Olympic torch is extinguished in Beijing), not on immovable network infrastructure. 

In a way, this is similar to what was done back in 1953 when Queen Elizabeth II was crowned. The networks invested in equipment and commentators to cover the coronation, and then used jet bombers (the long-lived English Electric Canberra) to transport the film to the US and Canada.

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