Since the arrival of our first Vislink HCAM UHD/HEVC ultra low delay wireless camera systems at the beginning of the year, the demand for ultra-high definition RF systems has been soaring, and exists now in the industry more than ever.
The first of our 28 HCAM HEVC wireless camera systems delivered was through its paces back in January at a Women’s Super League fixture between Chelsea v Arsenal at the Kingsmeadow Stadium. Quite impressively, the UHD output was immediately offered to the match director to be included in the live cut even though it was only meant to be used for testing, and completely exceeded our initial expectations.
Another test was conducted the following week January at Wembley Stadium for a Premier League fixture between Tottenham Hotspur and Everton, where the new equipment proved itself once again, this time on the big stage in front of over 75,000 fans in attendance.
After being tried, tested and proven on the football pitch it was time for another challenge, so we turned to boxing, and where better to start than the most anticipated fight of the year – Anthony Joshua and Joseph Parker at the Principality Stadium in Cardiff? The fight sold almost 1.5 million pay-per-view buys in the United Kingdom alone, and was watched by a nearly 850,000 viewers on Showtime Championship Boxing. Up next it was Bellew v Haye 2 in front of a near-capacity crowd at London’s O2 Arena, the rematch which was dubbed ‘Repeat or Revenge’ after Bellew’s controversial win over Haye back in 2017, a non-title fight which fight which still managed to surpass 750,000 pay-per-view buys.
More recently, Saturday 19th May was our busiest transmission day ever in terms of HCAM HEVC wireless camera system deployment. In the morning we had the Royal Wedding, the most high profile job of the year which is said to have enticed a peak audience of around 2 billion viewers worldwide, where seven UHD RFsystems were used – three by the BBC and four by Sky News. It was the year’s biggest UK TV event to date, with an estimated BBC audience of over 13 million, ITV almost 4 million, and Sky News, Sky One and BBC News programmes bringing in a further ½ million.
In the afternoon it was the FA Cup Final, where we had a helicopter flying overhead with a UHD aerial downlink installed to offer a birds eye view of Wembley Stadium as Chelsea defeated Manchester United 1-0 to claim their eighth FA Cup title. In the evening, Lee Selby took on John Warrington in an IBF World Featherweight title fight at Elland Road in Leeds. Again, the HCAM HEVC wireless camera systems surpassed every expectation and proved themselves on the world stage.
It’s almost as though the only thing we’re yet to do with our UHD wireless camera systems is head overseas, but it’s not long until that changes. Pallets are being wrapped already and will be on their way to Russia very soon for what will no doubt be the biggest sporting event of 2018.