Your browser is out-of-date!

Update your browser to view this website correctly. Update my browser now


WestwoodOne in Sochi — Teamwork Wins

Bringing the Olympics to American radio is the work of a small number of people with a handful of equipment

Third in a series.

WestwoodOne is the exclusive U.S. radio source for coverage of the 2014 Winter Olympic Games in Sochi, Russia.

As the Olympic Games in Sochi near the end, we complete our series by taking a quick look into the surprisingly small studio suite that is responsible for bringing live radio coverage to the United States audience.

The Olympics are often about teamwork … broadcasting is always about teamwork.

Two editing stations in the bull pen. They are mirrors of each other.

Tim Parker (L), operations manager, NBC Sports Radio, and Aaron Cummins (R), producer, WestwoodOne Sports and managing editor, hard at work in the bull pen.

According to WestwoodOne the duties of the bull pen stations include, “Multiple simultaneous dead rolls, engineering/producing short form pieces and editing audio are typical functions of these workstations. Venue check-ins and pre/post-production are common as well. Each position can pot-up venues, assign mix-minuses, as well communicate with other positions and venues via a Sierra Automated Systems ICM intercoms. Like all positions these can be routed down any transmission path to the New York broadcast center.”

This is the short form studio. Equipped similarly to the bull pen stations, this room is acoustically isolated allowing for more complex production from reports all the way up to play-by-play via a monitor if necessary.

These little rack boxes are the workhorses.

Each station in the bull pen along with the short form studio has the same equipment configuration in the box: Sierra Automated Systems ICM 32 intercom, Telos HX1 POTS hybrid and a Dixon NM-250 MKII newsroom mixer. Also handy are Sennheiser HMD 26 headsets, Henry Engineering MatchBox, Fostex 6301B powered monitors, Dell laptops connected to 24-inch LCD monitors and SAS Multipanel software control for routing.

This is the long form control room/technical operations center. The SAS Rubicon SL console is visible. Also in the room, mostly in a rolling rack just out of view to the left are: Telos HX1 POTS hybrid, five Symetrix 528E voice processors, two Henry Engineering Matchboxes and Henry Engineering Multiport interface, SAS USB interface, a pair of Fostex 6301B powered monitors, several Dell laptops with connections to LCD monitors.

In the control room, Mike Eaby, VP and coordinating producer for WestwoodOne Sports, and a mysterious hand holding a laptop plot strategy for the next show.

In the adjacent on-air/long form studio equipment includes SAS Rubi-T talent turrets, Sennheiser HMD 26 headsets, Shure SM58 microphones and Sony 7506 headphones. The SAS talent turrets provide a SMPTE clock readout, cough button and a headphone amp. There are two host stations (Sennheiser headsets) and two guest stations (Shure SM58s and Sony 7506 headphones).

Everything running perfectly — “Today in Sochi” hosts Kevin Kugler (L) and John Tautges (C) interview Snow Board Slope Style Gold Medal winner Sage Kotsenburg (R). A few seconds later, they are heard half-way across the world in the U.S.

Fringe benefits — WestwoodOne announcer Jason Horowitz gets to hang out with Halfpipe Gold Medal winner Kaitlyn Farrington (L) and Bronze Medalist Kelly Clark in the studio between shows.

WestwoodOne Sets Up in Sochi

Meet the U.S. Radio Olympics Team

Dial Global Amps Up Olympic Coverage