Al Jazeera signs global Sony XDCAM HD 422 deal to deliver ‘world class newsgathering operations’

May 28, 2014 3:30 pm

Al Jazeera Media Network is standardising all on Sony’s XDCAM HD 422 camcorder range to continue to raise the technical quality of its award-winning news broadcasting, which broadcasts to more than 250 million households across 130 countries.

Al Jazeera selected the PMW-500 and PMW-200 camcorders with supporting accessories to standardise their global news production on leading-edge HD technology. The camcorders are being distributed to Al Jazeera’s news bureaus in 50 countries across six continents, where they will raise the technical quality of broadcasts on its six news channels while reducing the time taken to get news stories to air.

This purchase means that, in future, field operations across Al Jazeera will be standardised on the XDCAM 422 50mbs format. Al Jazeera has previously used Sony camcorders and equipment, and the upgrade to the XDCam HD 422 format allows for seamless integration with their current editing workflow, using existing equipment, as well as rapid adoption by staff familiar with Sony’s world-leading range.

As Sony’s XDCAM format natively supports a wide range of 3rd party applications across all aspects of news production, from shooting to re-using archived material, this will also provide Al Jazeera with a seamless workflow, minimising the overall processing time from acquisition to transmission.

Paul Quinn, Head of Field Operations, Al Jazeera English Channel, said, “Al Jazeera needed to identify the best-in-class newsgathering technology infrastructure so we could meet our need for a world class news operation. Sony provided the answer; a flexible, technical solution that delivers a high quality of content, at speed.” “Having successfully used Sony XDCAM products for a number of years, we felt that it was a natural progression to move to the SxS format and workflow. The Sony PMW-500 and PMW-200 cameras provide us with a reliable HD file-based workflow that gets news on screen more quickly, with a higher technical quality, while being cost effective,” added Quinn.

“Global newsgathering operations are under huge pressure to compete on a global stage, needing to be first on air with high quality, timely content. This demands high performing camera crews in the field using robust, easy to use technology that – through proven workflows – get stories to air quickly and efficiently,” said Rob Sherman, Managing Director, Sony Professional Solutions, Middle East and Africa.