The response below from TVO addresses where the organization stands in its conversion to digital:
Backed by one-time funding from the Ontario Government, TVO began its digital transition in 2007. The work has been carried out in the following order: 1) studio and post-production rebuild, 2) content management and archive and 3) distribution.
Rebuilding the Studios
TVO’s new digital studios, control rooms and post-production facilities were completed in early 2008, and were designed to accommodate both live and pre-recorded production. In-house productions like The Agenda with Steve Paikin and Gisèle’s Big Backyard are now shot in 16x9 HD format using new digital Sony cameras and switchers, edited in TVO’s upgraded AVID editing suites, and then digitally archived.
The control rooms were designed for both TV and interactive Web broadcasts, which are either sent directly to Master Control for distribution over cable, satellite, and over-the-air transmission, or streamed live to the Web over content distribution networks such as Internap and Limelight Networks. In the fall of 2008 TVO also deployed its new Air Pack, a fully portable control room that enables live shoots on location in HD.
Digital Content Management
Next up was content management. With the aim of easily repurposing content into different formats – “create once, reuse many times” – TVO is in the process of implementing a Digital Asset Management and Archive system, scheduled for completion in 2009. This will enable a seamless and tapeless digital workflow and storage environment.
This is important to an organization with almost 40 years of in-house produced content in its media library. Opening up access to our archives will deliver a unique record of the province’s culture, politics, education and more. At the same time, it creates new opportunities to monetize TVO’s assets and generate new revenues to sustain future growth and innovation.
The final pieces of the puzzle address distribution. This includes an upgrade to TVO’s Master Control to enable HDTV broadcast. The digital conversion of TVO’s Master Control is currently underway and will be ready by the fall of 2009. TVO will be available in HD on cable in Ontario and satellite in Canada where capacity can be secured.
The last piece will address TVO’s over-the-air (OTA) transmission network. TVO’s OTA network will be converted to digital in line with the Canadian broadcasting industry as a whole. The deadline for the digital conversion of medium and high power OTA transmission is August 31, 2011.
Like many other over-the-air broadcasters, to date TVO has not announced its plans in terms of the changeover. We are evaluating as many scenarios as possible that are technically feasible, and looking at issues of accessibility, cost, and delivery options. We are also participating in a Canadian DTV working group that includes other OTA broadcasters as well as cable and satellite providers, in order to develop practical solutions that will work for the industry and the consumer alike.
More information for Canada's transition to digital television can be found on Industry Canada's website at: http://www.consumerinformation.ca
, or here: www.ic.gc.ca/
For TVO inquiries contact [email protected]