TORONTO, CANADA – CTV, the most popular television network in Canada, delivers a wide-ranging mix of programming to its demanding viewers. While some of its content, prime-time and otherwise, originates south of the border, such as the hits Law & Order and CSI, a greater share is homegrown. Dramas such as Degrassi: The Next Generation and Flashpoint join Canadian-made television movies, in a smorgasbord of entertainment programming. The morning’s Canada AM and the evening’s CTV National News deliver information-based content, supplemented by news magazine programs W-Five and the politically-focused Question Period. To maintain its high production standards the network will be relying on over four hundred Klein + Hummel studio reference monitors.
The large purchase of K+H monitors initially came in anticipation of the Winter Games in Vancouver, as CTV, together with Rogers Media, outfitted the international broadcast center. “We had a huge
number of television production control rooms
to fill,” explained Paul Sellers, manager of audio operations and technologies for CTV Television Inc. “And while the speakers were used initially in Vancouver, we intend to use them for the 2012 Summer Games in London and other major events throughout Canada.” Interestingly, another one-hundred-fifty Klein + Hummel monitors had joined CTV in 2006 when the broadcaster purchased CHUM, a network that had already switched over to those monitors.
CTV operated seven production control rooms in Vancouver that used stereo pairs of either Klein + Hummel O 300s or O 110 monitors. Both units feature active design, the O 300 with three transducers and the O 110 with two. Audio production control rooms used a 5.1 array, with three O 110s in front, an O 810 subwoofer, and either two O 110s or two M 52s in the rear. The M 52 is a single-driver control monitor with a remarkably flat frequency response and a compact housing.
Avid editing suites used for the Winter Games duplicated the setup mentioned above. “For those editors who were new to mixing in surround, the M 52s made it easy,” said Robert Miles, audio and communications engineering manager, CTV/Rogers Consortium for the 2010 Vancouver event. “They provided great rear field coverage without intimidation.” In addition, CTV had several dozen additional M 52s and M 52Ds (which feature a digital input) for miscellaneous use throughout the production environment.
“My background is in TV production, not music production,” noted Miles. “I think there is less predictability with regard to the final playback medium in television. Some people will watch on a finely tuned, multi-thousand dollar home entertainment system while others will watch the exact same program on a small TV tucked between the blender and the coffee maker on the kitchen counter. The audio that we produce at CTV has to translate in both of these environments – and everything in between. These monitors have what I would describe as a ‘simple’ sound. I don’t really hear the speaker, just the program material.”
He continued, “I’m also impressed by how robust the K+H monitors are to room conditions. I first heard them in their showroom in Germany, which is remarkably realistic. There are desks around, as there would be in a “real” studio environment and the room treatments are modest, again, as they would be in a “real” world situation. The speakers sounded great in the showroom, and are very consistently transparent across the range, from the O 300 to the O 110 and even to the M 52. During our setup for the Winter Games, we used a number of simple drywall rooms for our editing and audio production suites. Even before we put up some simple acoustical panels to cut down on flutters, they sounded way better than I could have possibly hoped.”
ABOUT SENNHEISER Sennheiser is a world-leading manufacturer of microphones, headphones and wireless transmission systems. Established in 1945 in Wedemark, Germany, Sennheiser is now a global brand represented in sixty countries around the world through long-term distribution partners and subsidiaries in France, UK, Belgium, the Netherlands, Denmark, Russia, Hong Kong, India, Singapore, Japan, China, Canada, Mexico and the USA. Sennheiser’s technology is produced in manufacturing plants in Germany, Ireland and the United States. Their pioneering excellence in technology has rewarded the company with numerous awards and accolades including an Emmy, a Grammy and the Scientific and Engineering Award (of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences). The Sennheiser Group is proud to be affiliated with Georg Neumann (world leading studio microphones), and the joint venture Sennheiser Communications that brings their award winning technology to headsets for PCs, offices and contact centers.
PHOTO CAPTION Howard Baggley, CTV-RDS Senior Audio Operator at the Winter Games in Vancouver.