SMPA broadcast studio upgrades to high-definition equipment

Media Credit: Sam Hardgrove | Assistant Photo Editor

Davone Morales, GWTV’s general manager, and Annabel Gutterman, the station manager for GWTV, said the upgrades to the studio were much needed.

The broadcast studio on the fifth floor of the Media and Public Affairs building just received a facelift.

The renovations, which upgraded live shooting equipment used in the studio, were completed this month. Students who use the studio said the updates will help bring the facility up to speed with professional broadcast studios across the nation.

Davone Morales, GW-TV’s general manager, said upgrades to the studio include a switch to high-definition equipment and processing, new graphics computers, a new switcher table to switch between cameras during live shoots and a new teleprompter system. GW-TV will be trained to use the new equipment for the first time Saturday and their first shoot is scheduled for the following week, Morales said.

GW-TV is a student-run, closed-circuit television station that produces several broadcast news and talk shows, utilizing the studio once a month on Fridays. The studio is also used for production in broadcast news classes in the School of Media and Public Affairs.

“We will be the first people using all the new equipment, so it’s going to be very interesting to see how it all works,” he said.

Morales said officials in SMPA told him that the renovations were initially supposed to happen over the summer, but the project was delayed as officials negotiated budgets, types of equipment and different contractors. He said the renovations cost SMPA more than $100,000.

Morales said SMPA was transparent with him throughout the entire renovation process. He said GW-TV has been producing more packages outside of the studio during the renovation and has focused on training freshmen.

Their studio productions were delayed about two months, he said.

“They told us when they were starting, what dates were blocked out, they told us when trainings were happening for the new equipment,” Morales said. “They even apologized sincerely that it didn’t get done during the summer.”

University spokeswoman Maralee Csellar said the renovations began Oct. 2 after a summer of planning, during which SMPA supervisors reviewed and chose specific equipment to put in the studio and approved designs. The changes didn’t affect any classes, she said.

“The renovation to upgrade the equipment brings the studio up to current industry standards and will enable our students to train and prepare for a career on the latest and best equipment, giving them advanced technical skills as they enter the marketplace for internships and jobs,” she said in an email.

She declined to say how much the renovations cost or who was involved in completing them.

Annabel Gutterman, the station manager for GW-TV, said the upgrades to the studio were much needed because the old equipment made it difficult to produce shows.

She said that because the renovations were delayed, the organization had more time to train new members and introduce them to broadcast news before using studio equipment.

“The stuff we had to go through to get our scripts on the old teleprompter was a hassle,” Gutterman said. “That was always the first 15 minutes of the shoot, trying to get somebody’s word doc into the right format to get it onto the teleprompter.”

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