While the second game of the NBA Finals was being played in San Antonio, 14,000 Cavaliers fans at the Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland were able to experience the thrill of watching the game live and sitting courtside thanks to the “Cavaliers 3-D HD Experience,” a new HD display system developed by Vince Pace, president and CEO of digital 3-D imaging company PACE.
The unique production, which was also used earlier this season during the NBA All-Star game in Las Vegas, used dual Sony cameras; Pace hardware; and timing and JPEG-2000 transmission equipment supplied by Evertz Microsystems.
The technology used, at a cost of about $300,000 for the single event, is the same as that used for the NBA’s All-Star game in Las Vegas earlier this year. It uses a system developed in cooperation with Vincent Pace (via his PaceHD division and Fusion 3D camera system), Bexel, Sony and Real D.
Six customized HD camera systems (each made up of two modified Sony HDC-1500 cameras with Canon HD lenses, mounted side by side) were set up in the arena, strategically located at different positions. These unique camera rigs were manned by two operators, one focusing on the typical game action, while the other provided depth of field coverage. The camera feeds were then distributed via fiber to a portable HD flypack system (put together by Bexel) in a mobile production truck that included a Sony MVS 8000A switcher and an EVS XT server.
The output of the switcher (two uncompressed HD signals at about 3Gb/s) were then sent to the to the arena via fiber cabling, where fans watched the game on a large screen. The 3-D images were displayed using two stacked Sony SXRD 4K projectors. The projectors were fitted with a special polarizing filter supplied by 3-D specialists Real D. Audience members had special polarizing glasses to get the full 3-D effect.
PACE selected Evertz to provide the sync generators, distribution amplifiers and new JPEG-2000 compression equipment necessary for pixel perfect timing used in 3-D HD technology. Working in conjunction with Bexel, the Evertz equipment successfully managed two streams of information and delivered a perfectly synched 3-D viewing experience to the Cavaliers fans.