(MIAMI GARDENS, FL, August 29, 2006) As part of an extensive upgrade designed to modernize Dolphin Stadium, the in-house video operation was converted from standard definition (SD) to high definition (HD). Among the HD video equipment installed was a package of Fujinon HDTV lenses, including one XA101x8.9BESM HD zoom; two XA76x9.3BESM HD zooms; and three HA18x7.6BERM HD ENG-style lenses.
"Dolphin Stadium was remodeled because ownership wanted to promote a better fan experience for everyone attending our games," said Chad Messina, Director of Scoreboard Operations for Dolphin Stadium. "As a result, Dolphin Stadium now has the distinction of being the first stadium in the country to offer spectators in-stadium video entertainment produced and displayed entirely in HD." Dolphin Stadium hosts Miami Dolphin football games, Florida Marlins baseball games, and other high-profile events.
Prior to the stadium makeover, the in-house video infrastructure was strictly SD, employing three Ikegami HL-43 cameras with a variety of Fujinon SD lenses. With the HD upgrade, Dolphin Stadium upgraded to six Ikegami HK-725P 720p HDTV triax cameras, each outfitted with a Fujinon HDTV lens. Other HD purchases included a Ross Synergy MDX-3 HD switcher installed in the video control room and two Daktronics HD video score boards.
"We've always had great success with Fujinon lenses and Ikegami cameras. We loved the clarity and quality of the video pictures they produced. So when we decided to upgrade to HD cameras, we stuck with the same combination--only at HD resolution," said Messina.
The Fujinon XA101x8.9BESM lens is used for long-range zooms across the playing field and for capturing close-ups of people sitting in the stands, including the farthest seats of the upper deck of the stadium. "Even when we're zooming in on action clear across the stadium, we never have a problem where the picture is shaking or jittery. The image stabilization integrated within these high-powered zoom lenses is amazing," added Messina.
The two Fujinon XA76x9.3BESM HD telephoto field lenses are situated in the end zones for zooming in on game action. The three Fujinon HA18x7.6BERM HD ENG/EFP-style lenses are used on portable handheld cameras by roving cameramen to capture low-angle game shots from the sidelines and crowd shots from high up in the stands, as well as for promotional videos.
Messina said that the true test of the Fujinon lenses is the quality of the HD images displayed on the stadium's two huge Daktronics HD LED score boards that hang over opposite ends of the playing field, spanning the width of the end zones. These HD video displays are used to present the in-stadium HD show--including HD camera imagery, pre-produced graphics, animations, featurettes, lower third supers, replays, and advertising--produced in the studio control room on the stadium's club level. The HD show is also down-converted for display on SD video monitors throughout the stadium, including the sky boxes, clubs, lounges, and concourse areas.
"Since the HD cameras and lenses went into service April 1, we've been using them during all of the Florida Marlins games," said Messina. "Regardless of the weather conditions or light levels, the HD video images have been exceeding our expectations."
About Dolphin Stadium
Now 19 years old, Dolphin Stadium is home to the Miami Dolphins National Football League team and the Florida Marlins Major League Baseball team. It also serves as the venue for South Florida high school football championships as well as Florida Atlantic University football games. Dolphin Stadium has been booked to host the FedEx Orange Bowl game January 2, 2007; the 2007 Super Bowl on February 4, 2007; and the 2010 Super Bowl. More information about the stadium and its events schedule can be obtained at http://www.dolphinstadium.com
Fujinon is a major manufacturer and distributor of optics and lens assemblies for the broadcast, digital cinema and industrial markets. The company's line of television zoom lenses are used in virtually every segment of the broadcast industry, including electronic newsgathering, studio and field production, and high definition television. For more information about Fujinon broadcast and communications products, call (973) 633-5600 or visit our web site at http://www.fujinonbroadcast.com