MBC chooses Studer for widespread upgrade
UAE: As part of a long-running upgrade project, the Middle East Broadcasting Center (MBC) has been upgrading its audio systems with a number of Studer Vista digital mixing consoles. Supplied through regional distributor GSL Professional, the project included 62-fader, 52-fader and 32-fader Vista series models.
‘With the increasing complexity of our technical infrastructure and our dedication to providing the highest-quality television programming, we knew it was crucial to stay ahead of the technology curve,’ said Raed Bacho, broadcast manager of MBC. ‘Product continuity was a top priority, so we decided early on that settling on a single manufacturer would be the ideal solution.’
Mr Bacho enlisted the expertise of GSL Professional, who in turn recommended the Studer consoles. ‘We have had a very long, solid relationship with Studer, having used their products since 2002 when our Dubai Media Center studios opened. The products have shown great stability along with the flexibility needed for workflow, and console architecture was also something that set Studer apart from the competition,’ Mr Bacho noted.
The first purchase of the project was a 62-fader Vista 9 for its Al Arabiya new channel based in Dubai Media City. This was followed a year later with 62- and 52-fader Vista 9s as part of an upgrade to the control rooms at MBC 1.
With the three Studer consoles performing well in the MBC main control rooms, the broadcaster felt confident enough to continue expanding with the Vista platform and subsequently outfitted the control room of MBC 3 studios with a compact 32-fader Vista 1.
‘Our familiarity with the Vista 9, not to mention our enjoyment in using the consoles, made the Vista 1 a great fit for our upgrade at MBC 3,’ explained Basheer Saad, sound engineer supervisor at MBC.
For the most recent part of the project, MBC added a further 32-fader Vista 1 console to its Dubai Media City studios for Al Hadath, a free-to-air news and current affairs satellite channel that operates as an extension of Al Arabiya. In addition, MBC’s news bureau in Cairo is also equipped with a 32-fader Vista 1. Utilising Studer’s D21m I/O systems, the broadcaster has connected each of the consoles in its Dubai Media City studios via Madi.
In addition, with an upgrade to Vista software version 4.9, MBC has been able to benefit from the manufacturer’s VistaMix and FaderGlow technologies. ‘VistaMix is a great tool to reduce the noise coming from the newsroom in talk show programmes with multiple presenters and guests on the air,’ Mr Saad explained. ‘Also FaderGlow is so handy when we work live in our 24-hour news station. These types of features contribute to the ease of use of the Studer consoles and enabled our sound engineers to adapt quickly to the technology.’
Following the extensive project, Mr Bacho noted that the ‘Studer consoles have definitely met our needs so far, as evidenced by the fact that we have continued to upgrade our studios with Vista consoles. We have had great experience with Studer in terms of audio quality, workflow and support.’