Responsible for selecting and playing audio content, such as music and effects, for the network’s live and recorded events are Manuel Amengual, Supervisor of the Music and Post-production department, and Omar Noguera, Chief Engineer for the Audio department.
With ageing equipment causing reliability issues and other impracticalities, the team was tasked with sourcing a reliable and efficient solution to replace the TV studio’s outdated audio workflow. As a past Sonic Solution DAW user and owner, Amengual was keen to explore Swiss pro audio specialist, Merging Technologies’ offering and contacted its local dealer, Mario Cuellar at Binaural in Caracas.
Venevision workflow with Anubis and Ovation
The solution they arrived at not only enabled a seamless transition with a cutting-edge system which not only replicated Venevision’s previous workflow, reducing operational stress - but also offered significantly improved audio quality.
By using a Solid-State Logic studio controller (SSL UF-8) in conjunction with a dedicated Ovation keyboard, Venevision recreated the pieces of equipment previously used to mix multiple sources live during the show: CD players, Mini Disk players, Instant Replays and a computer.
The new system used 4 Hotkeys in an array of 6 rows by 8 columns, with each column (or source) mapped to one fader in the SSL UF-8. This was “to give the operator the same mixing feeling”, says Amengual. Audio sources included Bumpers, Loops, 4 columns of background/incidental music and effects, with the last column reserved for playback from guest musicians. “Since the audio content playback is of a stereo nature, we chose stereo channel strips for the mixer to mimic the Ovation Hotkey array”, he explains.
The Ovation mixer also had two buses, one for PGM and another for PFL. Merging’s ‘Aneman’ network manager allowed Amengual and his team of operatives to successfully configure the PGM bus on the Ovation directly to the Anubis outputs 1 and 2 (to the main studio console) so the PGM bus was routed in multicast to the main studio console. The Anubis was used to facilitate routing, with sources configured for PGM, MON/PFL buses and, just in case, WDM sources.
With expert advice and support from Binaural, Venevision's new system, combining Ovation and Anubis, marked the TV network’s successful transition to a modern, efficient and reliable audio workflow. The solution from Merging Technologies allowed multiple pieces of aging equipment to be seamlessly replaced, transforming audio quality for its viewers, to the delight of Amengual:
“I'm constantly pushing for excellence in all our audio projects by being persistent in the correct selection of our tools. Ovation/Pyramix + Anubis have fulfilled all our expectations.”
So successful was the integration, the studio sourced a master Ovation system with an extra Pyramix workstation with Cedar Audio Tools for post-production and show building purposes. The network now plans to expand this setup to other studios in the coming year, a testament to Merging’s effectiveness.