Japan Racing Association upgrades network with Omneon Spectrum HD Servers

USA/Japan – Omneon, Inc., announced that the Japan Racing Association (JRA) has selected the company’s Spectrum HD media server system to provide ingest and playout for its broadcasts of thoroughbred horse-racing programs and information to racetracks and off-track betting facilities. The Spectrum system installation, integrated by Ikegami Tsushinki Co., Ltd., of Tokyo, is part of a transition now underway at JRA to an all-HD environment. “In making the jump to HD, JRA wanted to use only best-of-breed systems that would provide seamless interoperation now and in the future,” said Yahiro Nakagawa, broadcast system subsection chief at Ikegami Tsushinki Co., Ltd. “They were impressed with the Spectrum system’s reputation for reliability, as well as the flexibility afforded by its open architecture design. They also liked the modular character of the Spectrum system, which will enable JRA to make its transition to HD without any significant disruption of the services that racing fans depend on.” JRA has installed Spectrum systems at each of its two broadcast centres, located in the Kanto and Kansai areas. Each provides about 270 hours (6.7TB) of storage, with six channels of MPEG-2 HD ingest and 18 channels of playout at 50 Mb/s. At JRA, the racetracks’ live content is delivered to the centres, ingested to Spectrum Servers, and transmitted by asynchronous transfer mode. Besides the races, JRA broadcasts continually updated and ongoing coverage of every aspect of the “sport of kings” including odds and background information on the horses and jockeys, to 52 locations in Japan since 1984. The Spectrum system has been on air since 21 June, 2008.

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