LRT virtual studio

In recent years, there has been a major shift in the way television studios operate, with new workflows, new control systems, new cameras and on-air graphics becoming prevalent. For Lithuanian National Radio and Television (LRT), this has necessitated a complete refit of one of its studios, with the implementation of a full HD Smart Virtual Studio in its Vilnius-based operation.

LRT is a non-profit public broadcaster that has been providing regular radio services since 1926 and television broadcasts since 1957. It operates three national television channels, three radio channels and an internet portal. It also provides satellite and live internet broadcasts, radio and television podcasts.

The studio needs to cope with the seven to eight-hour daily workload of flagship national daily news programmes, weather forecasts and talk shows. The solution, delivered by  TV & Communication Systems (TVC), the one of biggest integrator companies in Baltics region, includes virtual solutions control and graphics rendering from Vizrt, as well as robotic dolly-based camera systems from Shotoku Broadcast Systems.

“LRT wanted to upgrade the look of its live broadcasts, to give a more modern view and reduce on-air errors,” explains says Arūnas Uksas, Regional sales manager for TV & Communication Systems (TVC), who performed the installation. “This involved supplying them with robotic dolly-based camera systems with remotely controlled pan and tilt heads to allow for fluent movements, which aren’t possible to achieve by hand.

The studio décor and layout has been delivered and installed by art studio TV Komanda. It is designed to be smart, with no sharp edges. It is bright, all its edges are curved, wooden elements give a feeling of cosiness and a honeycomb pattern, the colour of which can be adjusted, has been etched into the glass that makes up the walls of the studio and the base of the presenters’ desk. The décor is designed to have its own intelligence, and can even reflect the music being played or the movements of dance being performed there.

The installation of the Shotoku robotic cams was a key component of LRT upgrade, including a large SmartTrack rail system to achieve the desired visual impact and a TG-18 pan and tilt head, to allow complete freedom for on-air adjustments, supporting rapid camera moves as well as ultra-slow, smooth on-air crawls.

LED screens display background images for the presenters and can also be used as a virtual window, which acts as an extension to the real studio space by creating a true perspective representation of the background based on camera positions, adding depth to the physical studio for displaying virtual graphics.

“The range of on-air tracking shots provides unique camera motion adding interest and variation, without distracting from the serious nature of the news content and the overall production values,” says Arūnas. “And the Vizrt solution renders all graphics on the-fly for the large LED screens and on-air lower thirds that have been installed, as well as an augmented reality system for two cameras.”

The entire system is driven from a Viz Trio interface, providing easy and intuitive GUI for all system components, allowing one operator control the video wall, lower thirds and virtual set from one convenient workplace. Vizrt also provided the Weather and Maps systems for convenient, fast and informative display of various forecasts, and illustration of news events. All hardware is based on HP servers and workstations, equipped with NVIDIA graphics cards and Matrox video I/O cards.

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TVC Solutions, UAB

Dvaro str. 140, Siauliai, LT-76199, Lithuania

+370 41 520 295

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