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Thousands of sporting events occur worldwide every week, but very few of them compare to the scale and spectacle that is the Superbowl. Every year, brands spend millions of dollars on their half time ads, fans wait with bated breath to secure their tickets and hundreds-of-millions of viewers tune in to catch the action from the comfort of their own home. Superbowl LVII was no different - with over 113million viewers, in the US alone, tuning in to watch the nail-biting action.
So, the game was electric, and Rihanna slayed her half-time performance, but were you left wondering how on earth it all comes together? State Farm Stadium, the home of the Arizona Cardinals, rapidly transformed into a global stage to accommodate all the action – there must be some magic behind that.
Well, in a way, it is indeed magic – plus, a team of highly-skilled engineers and some seriously kick-ass kit. State Farm Stadium had an existing control-room that was used to run National Football League games. However, in just two weeks, a team of engineering experts completed a control room renovation, and the building of an entirely new control room - migrating from an antiquated system to a full-IP facility.
The shift to IP, and in particular the deployment of IP KVM, played a huge part in the seamless nature of this project. The Cardinal’s had already adopted an ADDERLink® INFINTY Manager (AIM) and a matrix of ADDERLink INFINITY 2122’s (ALIF2122) in their existing control room, so the team from Insignia Event Services were able to bring in new technologies and additional KVM receivers and drop them straight into the network. Across two control rooms, one located in the sub-basement and one on the third floor of the stadium, the IP-based ALIF solutions, provided by NEP’s Bexel, allowed operators to access any machine on the network in real-time. Operators in control room A could access Ross Video’s Mosaic technology to create graphics on the fly. While the team located in control room B, responsible for delivering the mind-blowing half-time show, were controlling the main engineering computers that were running Riedel’s Director System to take manage communications.
Rick Freeman, senior broadcast engineer at University of Georgia, supported the Insignia team on the ground, and he recently caught up with the Adder team to share his experience. Rick said, “The ADDERLink INFINITY system made the whole process seamless. AIM, or the backbone of the system as I fondly refer to it, was already there so we were able to scale up operations and bring in different technologies without having to worry about interoperability and reliability. Our computers were stored in multiple locations around the stadium, so the flexibility of the Adder system was critical. We knew the KVM would just plug in and work, so we could focus on bringing in complex systems, routing video and scaling up without having to worry about where computers were located.”
The multi award-winning ADDERLink INFINITY range is used by organizations around the world, either as a point-to-point extender or an IP KVM matrix, to improve operational effectiveness, achieve better inter-team collaboration and streamline IT workflows. Rick added, “The University of Georgia relies on the ADDERLink INFINITY range to connect colleagues with their IT resources and broadcast solutions. The IP nature of the technology gives us the flexibility to scale our network as and when required, and allows us to route critical data and video to any of our colleagues, whether they are based on campus or further afield.”
So, there you have it, a little insight into the running of the biggest show on earth! We may not have been there in person, but it rocks to know that Adder’s KVM played a huge part in this amazing event. Congratulations to the team on the ground for pulling off such an epic show, and to the Chiefs on their Superbowl win! We can’t wait for next year!
If you would like to find out more about the ADDERLink INFINTY range, or how Adder’s solutions are used in other live events, visit www.adder.com/infinity or get in touch with one of our IP KVM experts.