The broadcaster has purchased 27 Sony SRG-X120 pan/tilt/zoom (PTZ) cameras to capture crisp images of presenters and guests in its Brussels-based radio studios.
Streamed live to audiences – via dedicated TV channels Bel Vision and Contact Vision, in the morning prime time on main TV channel RTL-TVI and through RTL’s website and social media platforms – broadcast-quality video from the robotic cameras adds an extra dimension of audience engagement to listeners and viewers worldwide.
RTL Belgium reaches a weekly audience of over 1.5 million listeners through its network of French-language radio stations that includes Bel RTL, Radio Contact and Mint. The discreet, compact Sony cameras installed in RTL’s studios are controlled by an automated studio system by Netherlands-based Mobile Viewpoint. The AI-powered system acts as a ‘virtual director’, tracking presenters and studio guests to control the cameras’ movements in real time.
The high-quality 12x optical zoom lens of the SRG-X120 offers a wide field of view to capture presenters and guests in the confines of a modestly sized studio space. RTL Belgium can produce high quality video without requiring human camera operators in any studio, which is more comfortable for presenters and studio guests in a Covid situation.
“Today, radio is about much more than audio. Video is an increasingly important part of the enriched entertainment experience, giving audiences the opportunity to see as well as hear” says John Huybrechs, Senior Projects & Systems Engineer, RTL Belgium. “We’d been looking at other PTZ camera solutions, and the SRG-X120 scored very strongly on 4K picture quality, ease of use and NDI support. We were also pleased to discover that it offered excellent value for money compared with other PTZ camera solutions.”
“The exceptional image quality and convenient interfacing of the SRG-X120 camera makes it an ideal partner for vPilot, our AI-powered live production platform” says Mark Andrews, Global Sales Manager at Mobile Viewpoint. “vPilot automatically switches between different PTZ camera feeds by intelligently analysing images as well as audio signals from presenters and guests. It’s a compelling addition for radio broadcasters, bringing a cost effective new visual dimension to their live output with minimal need for additional personnel.”
“’Visual radio’ is becoming a major trend as broadcasters deepen engagement with global audiences across a wide range of online platforms” says Norbert Paquet, Head of Media Solutions, Sony Professional Solutions. “Excellent picture quality is an essential element of this ‘mix and match’ approach to creating complementary media channels. More broadcasters are discovering that our smart PTZ cameras can play a powerful role in automating programme production – and without the expense and additional crewing requirements of conventional TV broadcasting.”