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>> FOX Replaces Playout Infrastructure at LA Broadcast Center With Integrated Solution From Harmonic

Date: Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Efficient File-Based Playout Solution Powers 14 FOX Channels Including the New FOX Sports 1 Network

Harmonic (NASDAQ: HLIT), the worldwide leader in video delivery infrastructure, today announced that FOX Broadcasting Corporation is updating the entire playout infrastructure at its Los Angeles broadcast center with a Harmonic solution built on Spectrum™ ChannelPort™ branded channel playout. FOX made the shift to efficient file-based playout with integrated master control capabilities in preparation for its new FOX Sports 1 Network, which launched on Aug. 17.

“As a company we’ve never been afraid to innovate, and our investment in Harmonic’s file-based playout solution is part of a major shift in how we produce and deliver content here at FOX,” said Joe Coffaro, vice president of engineering at FOX Networks Engineering & Operations. “The ChannelPort playout and surrounding video infrastructure from Harmonic provides the reliability, functionality, and efficiency we require.”

ChannelPort provides support for up to four channels per rack unit with exceptionally low power consumption, which aligns with FOX’s growth strategy. The FOX network broadcast center in Los Angeles supports 14 FOX channels. This deployment will rely on Harmonic infrastructure that includes Spectrum MediaDeck™ 7000 playout servers equipped with dozens of ChannelPort modules, redundant Harmonic MediaGrid shared storage systems, and MediaCenter™ server controllers with integrated storage that together provide dozens of ingest channels. A redundant Media Application Server will be tightly integrated with the existing automation system at FOX to provide media asset management capabilities for the ChannelPort deployment.

ChannelPort speeds the cost-effective deployment of new SD and HD television channels by integrating branding and master control switching with clip playback on Spectrum, the industry’s most trusted media server platform. Possessing powerful channel-in-a-box capabilities, the high-density ChannelPort enables the keying of multilayer graphics and dynamic text over playback or live video to produce rich on-air looks.

The dual DVE and eight-layer integrated branding capabilities offered by ChannelPort will make it easy for FOX to achieve an on-screen look for sports programming that is challenging and costly to achieve with traditional master control equipment. By placing both the main program and the commercial content on the same screen, a double-box effect allows FOX to go to a commercial break without leaving the action. The commercial runs in a large box while the game or other live program runs in a smaller box in the upper corner of the screen, with a themed background plate that matches the content of the commercial.

“The solution we’re providing to FOX Broadcasting offers an advanced and very robust file-based workflow architecture that will support simpler yet more flexible playout of compelling broadcast content,” said Eric Armstrong, vice president of North America at Harmonic. “As FOX continues to refresh its broadcast and distribution model, this architecture and complementary Harmonic technologies lay the foundation for even greater flexibility and efficiency in delivering highly competitive content.”

Further information about Harmonic and the company’s products is available at

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