On-Site Technical Expertise Ensures Solid RF Coverage for 9th Consecutive Championship Series
MIAMI, JUNE 21, 2013—When game one of the 2013 NBA Finals between the Miami Heat and San Antonio Spurs tipped off at the American Airlines Arena in Miami, Professional Wireless Systems (PWS), a Masque Sound Company, and experts in supplying and supporting wireless systems for live and broadcast events, was courtside, coordinating RF for the more than 250 frequencies in use at the championship series. This marks the ninth straight time PWS has managed the frequencies for the Finals.
This year, PWS’ team on the ground included Jim Van Winkle John Garrido and Larry Myhre, who worked closely with the team venues—the American Airlines Arena in Miami (Miami Heat) and the AT&T Center in San Antonio (San Antonio Spurs)—to ensure zero frequency interference throughout the course of each game.
“Familiarity is a key factor in making frequency coordination work,” says Van Winkle, general manager, PWS. “Since this is the third consecutive year the Miami Heat have made it to the Finals, we had the advantage of already being familiar with their arena. And although it’s been eight years since the Spurs were in the championship, we have been in their building as well, so that also made it easier for us.”
For the seven game series, PWS also collaborated with the networks broadcasting the games, along with the local Society of Broadcast Engineers (SBE) coordinators, to get the local contacts and information they needed at each venue. This way, they could ensure they had all the necessary RF information for Miami and San Antonio.
“People working the same event every year begin to recognize faces so they understand that we are there to help protect them from rogue frequencies,” says John Garrido. “Now they come to us if they feel they need a new, cleaner channel. While it doesn’t necessarily take the burden off of anyone, it is nice to be considered a familiar face after working the same event for a while. A lot of them will also come find us when they see someone who is not compliant so we can go find them and issue them frequencies.”
One of the biggest challenges the PWS team faces in providing frequency coordination is the sheer volume of ENG crews and news reporters that cover the Finals. “With more than 250 frequencies spread out all over the arena, it is essential that we stay on top of things, and find and correct any issues as quickly as possible,” says Van Winkle. “In the past, you could have a break in between segments. These days, there are a lot of non-stop entertainment performances that are part of the game experience, which makes it more physically demanding. There are more people with wireless mics than ever before and because it is live, so we run around a lot more to resolve any issues.”
In order to keep the high volume of RF signal usage in check and to ensure frequencies maintain solid signals, PWS brings along its high-end portable equipment, including its spectrum and portable analyzers. “Having these tools is essential, as their portability allows us to chase down and resolve a problem as quickly as possible,” concludes Van Winkle.
For more information about Professional Wireless Systems, visit http://www.professionalwireless.com.