April 7, 2013

Harris Broadcast works with First Gulf Company on new 1080p installation in Mecca for Saudi Broadcasting Corporation

Harris Broadcast is completing the buildout of what expects to be the world’s largest master control room (MCR) for Saudi Broadcasting Corporation (SBC) in association with First Gulf Company (FGC), the Riyadh-based dealer and systems integrator. The new broadcast facility, which also includes a large studio, is part of a massive expansion program underway in the holy city of Mecca by Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Culture and Information to enhance the area of Al Haram Mosque, where millions of pilgrims attend the Hajj each year.

The new facilities will be used for the production and daily live broadcasting of prayers from the Islamic holy shrines in Mecca. The prayers, captured daily by a large number of cameras, will be broadcast live on the Al-Quran Al-Kareem channel and fed to other broadcast and online outlets. When completed the expansive broadcast MCR will manage the signal routing and quality control for multiple camera streams.

At the heart of the HD studios and MCR will be an integrated Harris Broadcast solution including multiple NEXIO® video servers for ingest and playback of both SD and HD content on the same chassis, providing cost-efficiencies and future-proofing capabilities. Signals are managed through the Harris Broadcast 6800+™ modular processing units, alongside Platinum™ routers with integrated HView™ SXPro multiviewers to ensure reliable signal monitoring across the station.

“When it came to replacing the broadcast facilities in Mecca we chose Harris Broadcast to deliver an interoperable broadcast workflow solution that is cost-effective, robust and highly reliable,” said Orlando Castro, director of engineering at First Gulf Company. “FGC is responsible for the design and integration of this entire project and we were keen to work with a reputable vendor, like Harris Broadcast, that we trusted to deliver best in class technology as well as the strong local technical support needed for such a major installation.”

“This is not just a huge new broadcast infrastructure, it is a critically important one due to the cultural and religious significance of its location,” commented Richard Scott, senior vice president, global sales and services at Harris Broadcast. “We are proud that our long-standing relationship with First Gulf Company has allowed us to be involved in this exciting, ground-breaking project. When complete it will be an excellent demonstration of the true scalability of Harris Broadcast solutions.”

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About First Gulf Company 
First Gulf Company is one of the leading contractors in Saudi Arabia in the broadcast field. Its activity covers all of the broadcast spectrum, from TV and radio studios, to TV and radio transmission, satellite uplink, TVRO, SNG, OB vans, etc. FGC enjoys the full in-house capabilities of design, integration, installation and commissioning of systems. FGC is extending its activities into the MEA region.

About Harris Broadcast 
Harris Broadcast is an industry leader in delivering the most advanced, content-rich media experiences available for a wide spectrum of radio, television and private media networks around the globe. With more than 25 leading brands including Versio™, Selenio™ and Maxiva™, the company enables media organizations to tap into one of the broadest, integrated product and solution portfolios in the industry. Headquartered in Denver, Colorado, the company is widely recognized for its product quality and reliability, engineering excellence and customer service, and has earned nearly 100 technological firsts and more than 50 awards for technical innovation. For more information, please visit harrisbroadcast.com.

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