Ziggo Sport benefits from NEP The Netherlands’ virtualized IP live production and playout services

2 February 2017 - Snell Advanced Media

Ziggo sport

Ziggo Sport, part of the Liberty Media Group and the pre-eminent sports rights holder in the Netherlands, including Premier League football and Formula One, chose NEP The Netherlands to provide their live production and playout facilities after a successful tender process.

NEP The Netherlands has deployed a fully IP, distributed, cloud production facility that gives ultimate flexibility when assigning resource on a project by project basis. Sitting at the heart of its eight control rooms, and connected by an IP network, is the data center. SAM was chosen by NEP The Netherlands to supply the key elements of its live production workflow – the production switchers, live replay system and playout technology.

NEP The Netherlands has deployed a Kahuna 4K switcher to act as the backbone of the switching resource in the facility. Kahuna can have M/Es allocated on the fly to any of the control rooms, over the IP network, to support the particular needs of the production at any time. However, the Kahuna is only there to support the deployment of the Kahuna’s sibling Kula. The Kula chassis’ sit in the data center and their control panels, connected over the IP network, are in the production control rooms. The Kula’s are powerful enough to meet most requirements but if additional switching power is needed the Kahuna can then step in.

To provide the replay element of the facility, SAM has delivered its new LiveTouch replay and highlights system. The architecture echoes the Kahuna and Kula’s – each control room has a LiveTouch control panel, connected to the servers in the data center over IP. LiveTouch is the fastest replay system in the market with the ability to handle multiple resolutions, multiple inputs and publish to social media immediately. LiveTouch offers the speed and flexibility NEP The Netherlands requires to support such a prestigious client as Ziggo Sport.

NEP The Netherlands also selected SAM’s ICE Channel-in-a-Box and Morpheus automation to handle the playout for Ziggo Sport six channels at the new state-of-the-art facility in Hilversum’s Media Park.

“When Ziggo Sport sourced us for this project after a lengthy and competitive RFP process, we felt it was crucial for us to work with a technology partner like SAM who has a thorough understanding of IP and also the requisite technology to support a virtualized data center and an IP-based future. With the help of SAM, we’ve made extraordinary efforts to ensure that everything going in and out of this new data center is IP. Ziggo never has to worry about even the smallest glitch,” commented Gerbrand de Ridder, Head of R&D at NEP The Netherlands.

Neil Maycock, EVP and General Manager, Media Software Solutions at SAM commented, “This is one of the largest deployments of our LiveTouch system to date, and we’re delighted that so much of our core technology is working together to give NEP and ultimately Ziggo Sport the assurance they need to meet the industry’s growing and global appetite for live sports. In the larger sense, this deal underscores SAM’s commitment to a hassle-free move toward IP, supporting broader industry adoption and integrating open standards as outlined by AIMS.”