Faced with the challenge of capturing more than 700 sporting events across 11 colleges and universities for live streaming and web archiving, the Big South Conference purchased Sony HXR-NX5U NXCAM AVCHD camcorders this fall for each school's athletic department.
The conference requires that its 11 member institutions -- spread across North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia -- use the camcorders to shoot the majority of their home sporting events, from football, men's and women's basketball to men's and women's soccer, volleyball, baseball and softball. The events are then streamed centrally though the conference site, www.bigsouthsports.com.
The Big South started live streaming in 2005, and the volume gradually increased to the point where the conference was handling more than 700 live streams which prompted the purchase of the Sony camcorders.
"At first it was pretty rudimentary, with inexpensive cameras and a series of pieces chained together to make everything work on a shoestring budget," said Mark Bryant, Director of Multimedia Development for the Big South Conference, in a statement. "As our needs grew, we knew we had to take the next leap forward, so we outfitted our schools with camera technology that was going to improve our picture quality, allow us to transition from standard- to high-definition projects, and to get more out of our camera equipment."
The conference plans to purchase additional Sony camcorders for each school to use at the start of the next school year, but one institution, High Point University, has already bought an additional camera.
"You can do a hundred things with whatever video you collect, but it's only ever going to be as good as what you start with," Bryant added in a statement. "We now have a better quality source from the beginning. It opens up so many more possibilities."