Sky News Arabia is a new venture, which will bring world class news coverage to the Middle East, in the Arabic language, 24/7. It will be transmitted in both SD and HD, and its news coverage will also be available online, on tablets and on smartphones. As a start-up, its production facilities represent the state of the art in television and online news, and building its new centre was one of the largest undertaken in the region.

TSL Solution

For a very large scale project the timescale was tightly defined, with the broadcaster planning to award the systems integration contract in the early part of 2011. System design, construction, installation, and training and rehearsals – for a largely new staff drawn from the Middle East & North Africa region – had to be completed for an on-air date in the spring of 2012. Following detailed negotiations, Sky News Arabia awarded the contract to TSL.

As a major international systems integrator, TSL could demonstrate success in large-scale projects, and the ability to drive leading manufacturers to achieve new levels of integration and interoperability. It had an existing base in the United Arab Emirates which would provide local support and staffing. TSL also had facilities in the UK large enough for the complete system to be built and tested while the site was being prepared.

Equipment Profile

Key vendors and kit:

  • Apple – editing
  • Avid – newsroom computer system
  • Broadcast Bionics – communications management
  • Calrec – audio mixer and distributed audio processing
  • Cisco – broadcast and corporate IP network infrastructure
  • EVS – media production server and asset management
  • Techex (Exterity and Haivision) – IPTV
  • EVS/Front Porch Digital – archive storage management
  • Grass Valley – production switcher and clip servers
  • Harris – automation, transmission scheduling, asset management, IP encoders and decoders
  • Miranda – multiviewers, control and monitoring, routing, glue
  • Omneon – transmission servers
  • Riedel – communications
  • ScheduAll – booking and scheduling
  • Sony – cameras
  • Spectralogic – tape archive
  • Vinten Radamec – camera robotics
  • Vizrt – graphics