The audio team at CBS Television City in Los Angeles used three Fairlight Constellation-XT consoles in mixing up to 120 CBS promos per day during the week leading up to Super Bowl XLI, held on February 4. The commercials this year included preview footage from upcoming episodes, so the CBS engineers had to wait until that material was completed to begin mixing the spots.
“Timing is everything in our line of work,” says audio mixer Jeff Ross. “Any down time affects our whole department, and if one room shuts down all the content gets bumped to another finishing audio suite and bottlenecks production. That’s obviously something we can’t afford to endure when preparing for the Super Bowl, which is our biggest event of the year.
“For short-form audio mixing it’s so important that the technology be as ergonomic as possible, because we mix so many spots in a given day,” Ross adds.
Additionally, the customizable design of the Constellation-XT allowed CBS Television City to set up macros specific to their needs. “Previously all macros had to be programmed through a computer interface, but the Constellation-XT enables us to customize our own presets simply with the touch of a few buttons,” Ross says. “This capability has impacted our day-to-day workflow, allowing us to maximize our project velocity and consequently our project volume.”
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