Media Stream Wave Uses Blackmagic Design Live Production Workflow for Coachella and Stagecoach Music Festivals

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Blackmagic Design today announced that Chicago based production company Media Stream Wave used a Blackmagic Design workflow comprised of 40 Blackmagic URSA Broadcast G2 cameras, 14 ATEM Constellation 8K live production switchers and more as part of its work for the 2024 Coachella and Stagecoach music festivals, produced by Springboard Productions. Media Stream Wave’s Principal Azuolas Sinkevicius supplied two production trucks equipped with Blackmagic Design gear, which serviced all eight stages at Coachella and four stages at Stagecoach with IMAG and broadcasting to streaming and social media platforms.

While the workflow for each stage varied depending on size and location, Media Stream Wave utilized multiple fiber workflows for its work on both festivals, consisting of the URSA Broadcast G2s equipped with Blackmagic Camera Fiber Converters and Blackmagic Studio Fiber Converters using SMPTE cabling for video, audio, power, talkback, and tally over long distances. The cameras fed into the ATEM Constellation 8Ks, with ATEM Camera Control Panels used for shading. Two ATEM 4 M/E Advanced Panels, six ATEM 2 M/E Advanced Panels, and an ATEM 1 M/E Advanced Panel were used to control all the ATEM Constellation 8Ks.

“Our client base wants to see a more cinematic result for these live shows, so that’s what we’ve been moving toward with the help of Blackmagic Design gear,” said Sinkevicius. “We’ve been able to spearhead that initiative with Coachella, and we’re very happy with the Blackmagic Design workflow we’ve built because it’s such a solid system, from beautiful images to low latency to extreme reliability during these high stakes productions.”

Noting the products’ ability to handle extreme situations, Sinkevicius said, “It’s amazing that I can put the Blackmagic Design gear in high intensity, mission critical situations like these festivals, where there’s 100 degree weather, they’re in the sun for 10 hours, and I still have zero dropouts. Coachella is like the Super Bowl of music with so much going on, and it’s an incredible feat to offer equipment that works as well as it does to support the amount of production that goes into these festivals.”

Sean Bartholomae, Media Stream Wave’s tech manager for Coachella’s Sahara Stage, echoed the sentiment: “The resiliency of these camera packages never ceases to amaze me. You can put them in some of the harshest conditions and they will not only endure but deliver an outstanding product.”

When it came to delivering recordings to the festivals, Sinkevicius implemented 96 HyperDeck broadcast decks across the stages to record all line cuts, ISOs and airchecks. Ten H.264 Pro Recorders were used for line cut versions that were uploaded specifically for the artists and management. For the streaming master control room in one of Media Stream Wave’s trucks, Sinkevicius used DeckLink 8K Pro capture and playback cards to run ad insertions and graphics that were triggered from the HyperDecks, with key and fill fed to the ATEM Constellation 8Ks.

Media Stream Wave also utilized 32 SmartView 4K monitors for various applications in the trucks, including shading and monitoring, and eight Blackmagic Video Assist 7″ 12G HDR monitor/recorders were used as utility monitors in the field. Nine Smart Videohub 40×40 routers across the two trucks routed video feeds to various infrastructure destinations, controlled by 64 Videohub Smart Control Pros. Thirty two Blackmagic Audio Monitor 12Gs were used for audio monitoring, and 56 Teranex AV standards converters provided various frame sync applications. Rounding out the workflow were 40 Teranex Mini SDI Distribution 12G converters used as signal distribution amplifiers and 450 Mini Converters Optical Fiber 12G-SDI to transport signals between stages and the video world in the trucks over fiber.

“The Blackmagic Design gear not only survived the intense desert with dust everywhere for days at a time during these festivals, but on top of that, the cameras also gave us the most gorgeous images that people couldn’t believe,” concluded Sinkevicius. “I love the Blackmagic Design equipment for these reasons and more. It has helped me build my business and reputation at Media Stream Wave. If I had to start all over again, I would do it the same way, because what Blackmagic Design has done is incredible.”