The Newsroom

BBC News Virtual Studio

Behind the scenes

This site closed in March 2021 and is now a read-only archive
AM
Alfie Mulcahy
Jon posted:
Jonwo posted:
I wonder if we might see this replace green screen studios in the next few years:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ufp8weYYDE8


I don't reakon we will. Because green screen will remain as a much cheaper option than HD wraparound screens.

With high profile films it kind of makes sense. So they can point to specific things (eg. Mountains, an incoming ship etc). Wheras with a news broadcast most of it is cosmetic and doesn't need to be interacted with.

Installing expensive screens that wouldn't noticeably improve the quality of the programme would undoubtedly be seen as a waste of money. Especially when a piece of green cloth or boarding could to almost the same thing

It’s not the green cloth that does the work in the ITV studio though! It’s the infrastructure broadcasters aren’t adverse to spending money on LED screens and adapting this technology will likely get cheaper and better over time.


Yeah. IIRC that side of things was produced by lightwell.

But surely the screens would need similar technology to calculate parallax and where the objects would be. So green boarding would still be cheaper
JO
johnnyboy Founding member
DTV posted:
Well here's a shot of the full set in N6:
*


I have seen that shot before and am I alone in it causing strange stirrings in me?

That's how news should look, imo.
JO
Jonwo
Jon posted:

I don't reakon we will. Because green screen will remain as a much cheaper option than HD wraparound screens.

With high profile films it kind of makes sense. So they can point to specific things (eg. Mountains, an incoming ship etc). Wheras with a news broadcast most of it is cosmetic and doesn't need to be interacted with.

Installing expensive screens that wouldn't noticeably improve the quality of the programme would undoubtedly be seen as a waste of money. Especially when a piece of green cloth or boarding could to almost the same thing

It’s not the green cloth that does the work in the ITV studio though! It’s the infrastructure broadcasters aren’t adverse to spending money on LED screens and adapting this technology will likely get cheaper and better over time.


Yeah. IIRC that side of things was produced by lightwell.

But surely the screens would need similar technology to calculate parallax and where the objects would be. So green boarding would still be cheaper


I don’t expect the technology to come to news for quite some time given how expensive is it at the moment but as it gets cheaper and we get to a point where HD is considered poor then i could see newsrooms around the world investing in it to replace green screen
Alfie Mulcahy and Roger Darthwell gave kudos
BC
Blake Connolly Founding member
Jonwo posted:
Jon posted:
It’s not the green cloth that does the work in the ITV studio though! It’s the infrastructure broadcasters aren’t adverse to spending money on LED screens and adapting this technology will likely get cheaper and better over time.


Yeah. IIRC that side of things was produced by lightwell.

But surely the screens would need similar technology to calculate parallax and where the objects would be. So green boarding would still be cheaper


I don’t expect the technology to come to news for quite some time given how expensive is it at the moment but as it gets cheaper and we get to a point where HD is considered poor then i could see newsrooms around the world investing in it to replace green screen


Isn't this pretty much what Eurosport has been doing with its 'Cube' studio? Not on the same scale as Disney's 'Volume' but more or less the same principle.

I suppose at present the main problem with using it for something like news would be it working with multiple cameras, the screens and shot changes would need to be in sync with no delay.
Last edited by Blake Connolly on 27 January 2021 1:45pm
dosxuk and Roger Darthwell gave kudos
IT
itsrobert Founding member
DTV posted:
Well here's a shot of the full set in N6:
*


I have seen that shot before and am I alone in it causing strange stirrings in me?

That's how news should look, imo.

I quite agree. The BBC News branding between 1993 and 1999 was faultless in terms of my own personal taste. I loved everything from the blue "virtual" branding through to the BBC World/News 24 flags and Breakfast News in the late 90s. I'd take the 90s branding over the present look of BBC News any day. The red/cream branding introduced in 1999 was very refreshing at the time and remains impressive but I feel the BBC has well and truly flogged it to death now. The "virtual" and "flags" eras benefit with hindsight from their fairly brief existence. I similarly enjoyed the ITN branding at the same time. The 1995-2000 atrium set (in Studio 3 at Grays Inn Road) and associated branding was equally impressive.
RD
Roger Darthwell
DTV posted:
Well here's a shot of the full set in N6:
*


I have seen that shot before and am I alone in it causing strange stirrings in me?

That's how news should look, imo.

I quite agree. The BBC News branding between 1993 and 1999 was faultless in terms of my own personal taste. I loved everything from the blue "virtual" branding through to the BBC World/News 24 flags and Breakfast News in the late 90s. I'd take the 90s branding over the present look of BBC News any day. The red/cream branding introduced in 1999 was very refreshing at the time and remains impressive but I feel the BBC has well and truly flogged it to death now. The "virtual" and "flags" eras benefit with hindsight from their fairly brief existence. I similarly enjoyed the ITN branding at the same time. The 1995-2000 atrium set (in Studio 3 at Grays Inn Road) and associated branding was equally impressive.

Spot on Sir! I would take the orchestral arrangement over the beeps any day now, I feel that these intros give the BBC a lot more authority to these intros speak absolute power, integrity and authoritive content. IMHO it emotes so much more pride as a national broadcaster than the current beeps.

Also same for ITN
Last edited by Roger Darthwell on 23 February 2021 12:10pm
IT
itsrobert Founding member

I have seen that shot before and am I alone in it causing strange stirrings in me?

That's how news should look, imo.

I quite agree. The BBC News branding between 1993 and 1999 was faultless in terms of my own personal taste. I loved everything from the blue "virtual" branding through to the BBC World/News 24 flags and Breakfast News in the late 90s. I'd take the 90s branding over the present look of BBC News any day. The red/cream branding introduced in 1999 was very refreshing at the time and remains impressive but I feel the BBC has well and truly flogged it to death now. The "virtual" and "flags" eras benefit with hindsight from their fairly brief existence. I similarly enjoyed the ITN branding at the same time. The 1995-2000 atrium set (in Studio 3 at Grays Inn Road) and associated branding was equally impressive.

Spot on Sir! I would take the orchestral arrangement over the beeps any day now, I feel that these intros give the BBC a lot more authority to these intros speak absolute power, integrity and authoritive content. IMHO it emotes so much more pride as a national broadcaster than the current beeps. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EDXpyvEB6go
Also same for ITN https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HMMXwvfkdWU

Totally agree. In terms of the David Lowe music, I thought it was incredible when it first launched but it's been diluted too much over the years. Granted, that had to happen as the BBC wanted more and more versions, but I still hold that the originals were the best. But even they are eclipsed by George Fenton's April 1993 orchestral arrangements and David Dundas' October 1993 WSTV music. Absolutely superb and remain so to this day. I also thought the October 1997 BBC World flags theme music by Joe Glasman was incredible. I was less enamoured with the News 24 flags music (by Dave Hewson, Alan Coates and Kim Goody I believe) but I was sad that BBC World's only lasted a few years on air. It remains timeless music in my opinion.

MW
Mike W
I also thought the October 1997 BBC World flags theme music by Joe Glasman was incredible. I was less enamoured with the News 24 flags music (by Dave Hewson, Alan Coates and Kim Goody I believe) but I was sad that BBC World's only lasted a few years on air. It remains timeless music in my opinion.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QHYHsSKEQ5w

Seconded; the World 1997 music is just timeless and has a sense of urgency around it, as well as having different versions for different needs. It's sad to think the WBR cuts were eventually replaced after lasting so long, and IMHO for the worse.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sjnoiiha_H4

Also agreed regarding the pips. I think the creative brief has been to keep them in place because it's recognisable as being the BBC, but why can't they incorporate the last 6 into an orchestral piece? There's only so much drum, bass and chords you can mix around them.

It's not that David Lowe can't compose brilliant music anymore, he's most likely constrained to a particular brand/creative brief.
IT
itsrobert Founding member
I also thought the October 1997 BBC World flags theme music by Joe Glasman was incredible. I was less enamoured with the News 24 flags music (by Dave Hewson, Alan Coates and Kim Goody I believe) but I was sad that BBC World's only lasted a few years on air. It remains timeless music in my opinion.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QHYHsSKEQ5w

Seconded; the World 1997 music is just timeless and has a sense of urgency around it, as well as having different versions for different needs. It's sad to think the WBR cuts were eventually replaced after lasting so long, and IMHO for the worse.

Yes, that was a terrible decision. David Lowe's music for WBR is totally bland and forgettable. Nothing like Glasman's version that was used for so many years.
MW
Mike W
I also thought the October 1997 BBC World flags theme music by Joe Glasman was incredible. I was less enamoured with the News 24 flags music (by Dave Hewson, Alan Coates and Kim Goody I believe) but I was sad that BBC World's only lasted a few years on air. It remains timeless music in my opinion.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QHYHsSKEQ5w

Seconded; the World 1997 music is just timeless and has a sense of urgency around it, as well as having different versions for different needs. It's sad to think the WBR cuts were eventually replaced after lasting so long, and IMHO for the worse.

Yes, that was a terrible decision. David Lowe's music for WBR is totally bland and forgettable. Nothing like Glasman's version that was used for so many years.

Even the flags visuals seem fresh to me, might just be nostalgia kicking in but the physical properties are just nice (filmed on a HSC in a tank underwater, all made out of silk - also filmed at the same time as the corporate 'ribbons' which were died ribbon. Directed by Sandy MacMillan).

Time for a refresh but I think the issue is two fold; the corporation don't want to lose their identity nor do they want the outlay of change or the backlash that comes with it. See the laziness of the 'Reith' changeover - not even updating the cats' cradle to the correct font. Makes you wonder if they even have the templates supplied by L-N!
IT
itsrobert Founding member
Seconded; the World 1997 music is just timeless and has a sense of urgency around it, as well as having different versions for different needs. It's sad to think the WBR cuts were eventually replaced after lasting so long, and IMHO for the worse.

Yes, that was a terrible decision. David Lowe's music for WBR is totally bland and forgettable. Nothing like Glasman's version that was used for so many years.

Even the flags visuals seem fresh to me, might just be nostalgia kicking in but the physical properties are just nice (filmed on a HSC in a tank underwater, all made out of silk - also filmed at the same time as the corporate 'ribbons' which were died ribbon. Directed by Sandy MacMillan).

What I like about them is that they are bright and colourful yet wonderfully neutral at the same time. Absolutely perfect for an international news channel. In fact, I think I would be overjoyed if the flags were brought back (in an updated form obviously) and rolled out across BBC News. Probably wouldn't work for regional news, but it would look great on national and international output even in 2021.
msim, Roger Darthwell and Alfie Mulcahy gave kudos
JO
Jon
Jon posted:

I don't reakon we will. Because green screen will remain as a much cheaper option than HD wraparound screens.

With high profile films it kind of makes sense. So they can point to specific things (eg. Mountains, an incoming ship etc). Wheras with a news broadcast most of it is cosmetic and doesn't need to be interacted with.

Installing expensive screens that wouldn't noticeably improve the quality of the programme would undoubtedly be seen as a waste of money. Especially when a piece of green cloth or boarding could to almost the same thing

It’s not the green cloth that does the work in the ITV studio though! It’s the infrastructure broadcasters aren’t adverse to spending money on LED screens and adapting this technology will likely get cheaper and better over time.


Yeah. IIRC that side of things was produced by lightwell.

But surely the screens would need similar technology to calculate parallax and where the objects would be. So green boarding would still be cheaper

Surely most of the technology isn’t in the screens themselves but the graphics engine. I may be over simplifying this but surely it’s just a case of the same adding movement on the LED screens that you would key on after it’s hit the camera. So basically it’s a similar process but in a slightly different order.

Newer posts