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denton1,018 posts since 4 Jan 2003
Three seconds!?


Yep. You get used to hitting Take 3 seconds before the end of certain theme tunes, if you want to come out of the programme without hanging on the endboard too long.

Crikey. Someone was recently telling me that the market for playout systems ain't what it used to be, and Grass Valley ICE is about as good as it gets - but I'm sure that other broadcasters who use it don't have a three second delay when pressing a 'take next' button. Did the BBC procure a particularly low-budget version?


I seem to remember someone telling me that UTV, when using Morpheus (GV ICE) in their new Belfast play-out facility before it moved to England, actually had a 5 second delay! They had cleanish feeds to work off, so it wasn't too bad for them.

I can't honestly remember the exact reason for the delays in the Morpheus system... but it's not to do with cut price versions... I think it might be more a side effect of having additional functionality. There's also an additional complication for the network announcers, who have to start speaking a few seconds early in order to stop speaking a few seconds early... their voice is delayed. If they didn't do that, and only stopped speaking just before the programme started... the delay would result in their voice crashing in over the top of the programme. Luckily the Nations announcers don't have that setup.
Last edited by denton on 20 April 2019 2:52am
noggin14,216 posts since 26 Jun 2001
Do programmes on the BBC clean feed have VT clocks or just sit on a freeze frame of early vision? I guess hitting take early is much easier with a clock


Live BBC shows, or shows that are pre-recorded but played in remotely. are not allowed to run from VT clocks, they have to run from pictures (though most will start with a second or so of 'early vision'). ISTR that the 'no running from clocks' rule was introduced 15+ years ago when too many clocks were being cut to air... (Well it was one way of solving the problem)

(VT Inserts into shows can run from clocks, last frame slate, first frame pictures etc., as that is up to the production team making the show)
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Blake Connolly1,715 posts since 21 Apr 2001
London London
Sky and ITV still use VT Clocks, BBC are the only ones that don’t.


For the sake of accuracy, it's probably worth clarifying that pretty much all recorded BBC shows have VT clocks, they are just not used at the top of live shows.

Similar sort of idea at BT Sport - live programmes should start with pictures, e.g. first frame of the opening titles or a live shot.
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bluecortina792 posts since 26 Jul 2012
Do programmes on the BBC clean feed have VT clocks or just sit on a freeze frame of early vision? I guess hitting take early is much easier with a clock


Live BBC shows, or shows that are pre-recorded but played in remotely. are not allowed to run from VT clocks, they have to run from pictures (though most will start with a second or so of 'early vision'). ISTR that the 'no running from clocks' rule was introduced 15+ years ago when too many clocks were being cut to air... (Well it was one way of solving the problem)

(VT Inserts into shows can run from clocks, last frame slate, first frame pictures etc., as that is up to the production team making the show)


That made me chuckle.
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Inspector Sands13,403 posts since 25 Aug 2004
Do programmes on the BBC clean feed have VT clocks or just sit on a freeze frame of early vision? I guess hitting take early is much easier with a clock

On the clean it goes from the BBC logo animation to the first frame of the programme, but it appears a few seconds before it starts.
commseng168 posts since 8 Dec 2016
London London
The Six Nations opening freeze frame was one of black a few years ago, before a flame leapt across the screen.
I hated it sitting there just black and silence on the outgoing links for a few minutes before we went on air.
At least in the completely analogue days you'd have been alerted to the link failing by analogue noise on vision and sound......
Rkolsen2,603 posts since 20 Jan 2014
BBC World

Yep. You get used to hitting Take 3 seconds before the end of certain theme tunes, if you want to come out of the programme without hanging on the endboard too long.

Crikey. Someone was recently telling me that the market for playout systems ain't what it used to be, and Grass Valley ICE is about as good as it gets - but I'm sure that other broadcasters who use it don't have a three second delay when pressing a 'take next' button. Did the BBC procure a particularly low-budget version?


I seem to remember someone telling me that UTV, when using Morpheus (GV ICE) in their new Belfast play-out facility before it moved to England, actually had a 5 second delay! They had cleanish feeds to work off, so it wasn't too bad for them.

I can't honestly remember the exact reason for the delays in the Morpheus system... but it's not to do with cut price versions... I think it might be more a side effect of having additional functionality. There's also an additional complication for the network announcers, who have to start speaking a few seconds early in order to stop speaking a few seconds early... their voice is delayed. If they didn't do that, and only stopped speaking just before the programme started... the delay would result in their voice crashing in over the top of the programme. Luckily the Nations announcers don't have that setup.

I have to ask who at Grass Valley thought that was acceptable? I realize master control switching is designed to be more redundant and smaller than regular switchers used for news and sport which may have a few frame delay when cutting sources.
Don’t let anyone treat you like you’re a VO/SOT when you’re a PKG.