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With Vizrt, BBC Sport Prepares a VR Experience for Beijing 2022 Audiences

Viz Engine 4
"Prior to the summer we converted a small studio space at Media City into a green screen area with a virtual design (by Jim Mann and Toby Kalitowski) and enhanced rendering technology to deliver an immersive, enhanced experience for audiences. The studio, with five different presenting positions that can house a variety of sports output, will be a key presentation location for BBC Sport during the 2022 Winter Games and beyond." -- John Murphy, BBC Creative Director and Head of Graphics for Sport (Image credit: BBC Sport)

Vizrt (opens in new tab), the home of software-defined visual storytelling solutions, is working with BBC Spor (opens in new tab)t to deliver a cutting-edge virtual set graphics ecosystem in Salford to cover the Beijing Winter Games. 

BBC Sport's integrated system will bring sports fans unprecedented access to the sports action happening in China this month. By utilizing Vizrt's Viz Engine 4 (opens in new tab)coupled with Unreal Engine 4 (opens in new tab) render pipeline and Vizrt's Fusion Keyer (opens in new tab), all driven by Vizrt's virtual set controller, BBC Sport creates a seamless studio environment with easy operator control.

[Vizrt Enhances Studio Solution with Vizrt XR Set]

One of the challenges the BBC needed to solve with this hybrid Unreal 4- Viz Engine 4 studio was enabling an operator-friendly workflow and streamlining content changes to provide viewers with meaningful information throughout broadcasts. The Viz Engine offers native integration of the Unreal Engine and the Viz Arc (opens in new tab) control application is the only one on the market where you can seamlessly control aspects of both render pipelines, allowing the producer to focus on the story being told, not the specifics of how the graphics are rendered.

Viz Engine

The workflow diagram for Vizrt's Viz Engine. BBC Sport created a seamless studio environment with easy operator control by coupling Vizrt's Viz Engine 4 with an Unreal Engine 4 render pipeline and Vizrt's Fusion Keyer. (Image credit: VIZRT)

In April 2021, BBC Sport launched the all-new Vizrt ecosystem to broadcast some programs from several key sporting tournaments and productions including, Match of The Day, Euros 2020 and the 2021 Summer and 2022 Winter Games.

"Prior to the summer, we converted a small studio space at Media City into a green screen area with a virtual design (by Jim Mann and Toby Kalitowski) and enhanced rendering technology to deliver an immersive, enhanced experience for audiences," said John Murphy, BBC creative director and head of graphics for sport. "The studio, with five different presenting positions that can house a variety of sports output, will be a key presentation location for BBC Sport this year, including the Winter Games for which we have added more design and development."

[Vizrt Production Control Debuts for Flexible Live Production] (opens in new tab)

"2022 is not just the year of sport for the industry, but it's the year of sport for Vizrt," said Vizrt CTO Gerhard Lang. "We're ramping up our offering across sports to support our customers in achieving their production needs; BBC Sport is a great example of that. We were honored to participate in last year's celebration of the UEFA Euro 2020 championships and the long-awaited Summer Games, and for us, the BBC sets the standards in sports both in looks and functionality across the market."

AVNetwork Staff

The AVNetwork staff are storytellers focused on the professional audiovisual and technology industry. Their mission is to keep readers up-to-date on the latest AV/IT industry and product news, emerging trends, and inspiring installations.