RTÉ invests in a major tech overhaul of its TV news studio

12 Feb 2019

The new RTÉ news studio. Image: Iconic Solutions

Redesign involves LED walls to boost RTÉ’s broadcasting capabilities.

Broadcaster RTÉ has invested in a major technology upgrade to Studio 3, the home of RTÉ News.

The broadcaster has worked with specialist visual solutions provider Ion Solutions to redesign the studio with new LED video walls and HD camera systems.

‘This project is the only refurbishment of the busy RTÉ News studio in the last 10 years’

Studio 3 is one of the busiest broadcast studios in Ireland and is responsible for pumping out more than 1,700 news bulletins and programmes a year.

The main news studio is home to the Six One News, Nine O’Clock News, One O’Clock News, News with Signing, News2day for young people, The Week in Politics, Leaders’ Questions as well as breaking news specials, Budget coverage and referendum results coverage, to name a few.

New set design

A view of the new RTE studio showing big display panels and lights with a pink neon table.

Image: Iconic Solutions

“This project is the only refurbishment of the busy RTÉ News studio in the last 10 years, and we’re proud to have designed and delivered sophisticated solutions which enhance RTÉ’s storytelling capabilities as it reports on Ireland and the wider world,” said Kevin Moore, director of Ion Solutions.

Formed through the merger last year of Eurotek Ireland and Avtek, Ion Solutions works on AV display projects with broadcasters and venues including Virgin Media Group, TG4, the Convention Centre in Dublin, Croke Park and SSE Arena in Belfast.

The new upgrade includes a 24m by 3m video wall, which spans three sides of the studio and utilises Absen LED technology, as well as Sony HDC-P1 HD camera systems and a Viz MultiPlay video wall controller. Other features include a new set design and additional presentation areas. All of this is designed to make the delivery of news more visually engaging for the viewer.

Ion Solutions’ in-house technical team also designed a bracket system that allows the video wall to be installed very close to the studio walls. Compared to a standard bracket system, this bespoke design increased space on the studio floor by 30 sq m.

“The main challenge was to find an LED solution that would be able to meet the stringent requirements of a live broadcast environment, with enough brightness and contrast to help content stand out in a bright studio environment, while providing a high refresh rate to allow viewers to experience RTE’s ultra-HD and 4K content,” explained Absen Europe’s head of brand and marketing, Alex Couzins.

“Absen’s DV Series did just that, and was delivered within a very tight timeframe.”

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years