Behind Sony’s 4K World Cup Broadcast
Sony shared their plans for capturing this year’s World Cup with us for this story, and the numbers are honestly staggering. Sony expects to capture more than 2,500 hours of content using twelve CineAlta 4K live PMW-F55 cameras and more than 288 HD cameras. 4K LCD monitors will be needed to review and edit the footage in real-time, while 4K multi-port AV storage units and 4K multi-format switchers will be needed to handle the feed.
Each match will involve 53 of the Sony team embedded within the host broadcast facility, from the director through to CCU operators to audio operators. This includes 22-people in the slow-motion unit and five operators for Infotainment. There are also an additional 30 people who are the actual camera operators, including one aboard a helicopter and two using remote control from within the OB facility.
And this is just for HD. When a match is also shot in 4K, an additional fifty people join the production working within their own 4k production facilities. By way of comparison, NASA’s mission control had just 50 people per shift for a Shuttle launch!
Sony says that shooting in 4K and using their PWA-4KS 4K stitching software allows them to get a 8K x 2K wide view of the entire field of coverage, so they can extract up to two HD views of any area on the composed view for use without having to shift cameras, which might cause them to miss some of the action. While they were unable to comment on the exact set-up at the point of writing, Sony expects it to be similar to what they used to cover last year’s FIFA Confederations Cup.