Between its Minneapolis and St. Paul locations, Star Studio has recorded about 3,000 shows since 2008. Recently, they upgraded their equipment for a better quality broadcast on a limited budget.
Star Studio in Minneapolis and St. Paul, Minnesota, broadcasts 10 shows and shoots about 12 hours of original programming every week. This studio is highly specialized for a particular purpose. The target audience is hospitalized children, and each program is geared to making their stay at Children’s Minnesota a bit easier.
In one form or another, Star Studio has been a part of Children’s Minnesota since 1978. The current studio set-up opened in 2010 with HD equipment. Between the Minneapolis and St. Paul locations, they’ve recorded about 3,000 shows since 2008. Recently, they upgraded their camera equipment for a better quality broadcast on a limited budget.
To broadcast the shows as well as stream them on the internet for patients who want to keep watching the shows from home, Star Studio is equipped with Vaddio® equipment: three RoboShot® 30 cameras, Quick-Connect™ CCUs, and a ProductionVIEW™ Precision Camera Controller.
One camera captures the audience from the front of the studio. Another is directly above the set for overhead shots. The third provides secondary coverage of the set. The Quick-Connect CCUs enable adjustment of AWB, red and blue gain, brightness, OPWB, gamma, chroma, detail, iris and gain. This aids in more accurate representation of the image and provides the ability to color match and shade multiple cameras.
The CCUs also deliver high-quality HD video, power and control over Cat-5 cables. The outputs allow for flexibility in system design so they can broadcast and stream simultaneously.
The ProductionVIEW Precision Camera Controller allows Ben Diger, Star Studio Broadcast Engineer, to pan, tilt and zoom each of the cameras during the show. Diger says this is his favorite piece of Vaddio equipment. The sturdy metal case and smooth camera movement are among his reasons.
“Image was a second factor for me,” he said. “It’s more about the camera control than image. It feels like you are using a camera – they are so smooth and fluid.”
Perhaps the best result is what happens with the children who are in the studio audience or watching from their rooms. Diger says the programming and interactivity of the call-in shows is often welcomed by parents.
“It’s something that is always surprising to parents. They say when the show is on and their child calls in, it may be the first time the child has smiled in weeks,” Diger said.