With 42 sports teams, Harvard University’s athletics department offers one of the country’s largest and most historic programs. From football, basketball, hockey and rubgy to skiing, swimming and rowing, among others, the school’s sporting events attract the attention of spectators, alumni and professional scouts. The university broadcasts around 300 live and recorded events in a typical year, the majority of which are now broadcast live on ESPN +, ESPN’s platform for consumers. The school also features images of its sports teams on its various social media channels, such as Facebook and YouTube.
In order to seamlessly capture and transmit all the action, Ivy League School relies on a variety of equipment, including the GY-HC500SPC CONNECTED CAM and GY-HM890 camcorders from JVC Professional Video, a division of JVCKENWOOD USA Corporation. Equipped with an IP-based production workflow solution in a compact form, the GY-HC500SPC Sports Production and Coaching cameras provide the university with the streaming and advanced graphics needed to fully share the performances and stories of its student-athletes.
While these models are used to capture and live stream mobile sporting events, such as skiing and rowing, Harvard’s video production team also relies on KY-PZ100 robotic PTZ cameras and PTZ controllers. RM-LP100, which are mounted in the various fields and arenas. The team also has a wide range of other JVC camera models, such as the GY-HM250, GY-HM790 and GY-HM600, which they use for various broadcasts.
When Imry Halevi, deputy director of sports at Harvard University, joined the team eight years ago, he decided to call on JVC. Responsible for leading the department’s multimedia, streaming and video services, Halevi knew he needed to find reliable equipment that would fit the school’s budget and also deliver the top quality images he wanted.
“Our mission is to tell the stories of our incredible student-athletes, coaches and alumni, and to preserve the history of sport at Harvard,” said Halevi. “That’s why we ended up making streaming one of our priorities. We want to make sure that if you are an alumnus or a fan of a Harvard student, athlete, coach or team, you can keep up with whatever they are doing. Even if you can’t see the games in person, we will help you watch those games from a distance, ”he says.
With the decision to purchase the technology and develop the university’s infrastructure to stream the games live, Halevi set to work expanding his JVC arsenal. “I’ve always been a fan of JVC image quality, I love the way it looks,” he adds. “I have used cameras from other manufacturers and JVC just looks the best. “
In addition to the quality of the images, Halevi explains that he also chose camcorders because they are easy to teach students to use professional equipment. “With all menus and controls in the same position on all models, we can provide our students with basic knowledge to easily switch between current school cameras, as well as feel comfortable with new camcorders. that we could acquire. “
As long-time users of JVC, Halevi and his team sometimes have the unique opportunity to provide important feedback on current cameras and suggestions for improvements for next-gen versions. In order to ensure broadcast-quality sports productions, Halevi requested a capture-quality camera similar to that of his beloved GY-HM890, which could also provide advanced graphics, connectivity and streaming. “We wanted something that was easy to use and had a large sensor, because we often shoot in low light conditions. I gave them all of my specs and said, “You know the 890s are great, but I need something smaller that I can just take with me.” “They in turn introduced me to the GY-HC500SPC,” recalls Halevi.
The new CONNECTED CAMS GY-HC500SPC have recently come in handy during ski season at Harvard, a difficult production setup in the mountains, in cold weather, says Halevi. “When we sent the students to the mountain it turned out to be like the coldest day of the year – minus 20 degrees with a wind chill. It was crazy. My biggest concern was that the cameras would stop working because I couldn’t reasonably expect them to work in all temperatures, ”he recalls. However, Halevi said the JVCs come equipped with Porta Brace Polar Bear packs and Hot Hands hand warmers, which keep cameras, batteries, cables, and even lenses hot enough to keep plugging in.
“We shot from 8 am to 6 pm. Never has a camera turned off, not even a hiccup; It was unbelievable. While that’s not the reason we chose the JVCs, it certainly reinforced the reason we use them. I expect them to work under normal conditions, but when I throw unexpected conditions on them and they keep working, we know we have a camera brand for life, ”concludes Halevi.