Tech spotlight

Griffin Going Green With New Tulsa Digs

The broadcaster is putting the finishing touches on a new 57,000-square-foot facility that will house its KOTV and KQCW. It’s equipped with geothermal heating and cooling, LED studio lighting and features a 5,400-square-foot studio with gear from Grass Valley, Samsung, Solid State Logic, Vizrt and Avid, among others.

When searching for a sign of a rebounding broadcast economy, one need look no further than Tulsa, Okla., where Griffin Communications is completing a 57,000-square-foot HD broadcast center on a three-acre site to house CBS affiliate KOTV, CW affiliate KQCW and their more than 185 employees.

Begun a year ago and set to go live next Jan. 19, the building is a model of "green" technology. It features geothermal heating and cooling and LED studio lighting that runs cool and uses less power.

Story continues after the ad

“The LED lighting instruments on our set will reduce our lighting power requirement alone by over 90% from previously-employed incandescent and fluorescent fixtures,” says David Griffin, CEO of Griffin Communications, which also owns KWTV Oklahoma City.

At the heart of the facility is 5,400-square foot studio, equipped with four Grass Valley LDK 4000 Elite HD cameras. It will be used to produce a wide variety of programming, including 39.5 hours of local news each week.

The studio is highly sound-proofed, using multiple layers of sheet rock and sound insulation in the walls and ceiling, according to Gerald Weaver, the station’s director of engineering. The audio infrastructure is all digital.

The news set was designed by FX Design Group. FX's Glenn Anderson said the set is unique, explaining that it is constructed in a circle within the rectangular studio. “It’s pretty close to 360 degrees or beyond,” he says. “By beyond, I mean it does not follow the studio walls. There is a multipurpose area behind the set that can be used for bands or other kind of shoots.”

Brand Connections

The set includes a window behind the anchor desk that allows shots into the adjoining 7,000-square-foot newsroom.

The choice of LED lighting — which include Litepanels 5600K 1x1 panels and Sola 4 and 6 Fresnel fixtures — positively affected the entire project, including the air conditioning, studio height, foundation and structural steel usage.

And with LED lighting, the set should keep its good looks longer, Anderson says.

“Sets use plastic laminates. Temperature and humidity changes have a drastic effect on those.... They can expand and contract. Some studios can vary by 20 degrees in a given day and it can cause the set to bubble. That won’t happen here."

For the presentation of video and graphics, the set has embedded 55- and 35-inch Samsung LCD panels and 65- and 46-inch NEC LCD panels.

“We would like to use technology to our advantage and have a quicker, flashier newscast,” Weaver says.

The Rygan Corp.’s high-performance Geo Xchange geothermal system should be able to heat and cool the building with the exception of the technical cores, which will still use conventional air conditioning. The entire facility will use 110 tons of air conditioning capacity.

The system includes 32, 500-foot wells in a geothermal field under the employee parking lot.

The system circulates water from the building into the geothermal field, where it’s always 64 degrees. In the field, the water is either heated or cooled to 64 degrees before being pumped back inside the building and into overhead heat exchangers.

Because of the wells, it cost twice as much as a conventional system to install, but only half the cost to operate.

The plant is a mix of old and new gear and software, according to Weaver.

“All of the production equipment is new,” he says. “The switcher is the new Grass Valley Kayenne. Audio is a C10 digital console by Solid State Logic. All the routing and the majority of master control is new, with the exception of the file servers, which are Grass Valley KT servers, and the Miranda NV5100MC master control system. We are already using it to deliver HD syndicated programming and commercials.”

For graphics, the station is using a Vizrt Trio in production control and Vizrt Ticker3D in master control, Weaver says. “We’ve had the Vizrt gear for two and half years, but have been using it in SD mode.”

The WSI weather system needs a simple software upgrade, he says. “We may add new weather facilities before the HD launch, but I can’t talk about that yet.”

In the newsroom, the Avid Isis editing system is new, he says. “Most of the existing gear there is already HD capable. It will just be a matter of switching the gear to the HD mode, rather than the 16 x 9 SD mode being used now.”

The newsroom has also added two Grass Valley K2 Summit 3G server frames and several terabytes of storage capacity to its existing complement of K2 servers that have been in use for several years. The new servers will be used in tandem with a Harris ADC playout automation system to handle incoming and outgoing programming and news feeds as digital files.

The facility, which includes a heliport, is located at 303 North Boston Avenue in the Brady Arts District and is part of a renaissance of downtown Tulsa.


Comments (0) -

Marketshare Blog Playout Blog




Overnights, adults 18-49 for October 27, 2016
  • 1.
  • 2.
  • 3.
  • 4.
  • 5.
  • 6.
Source: Nielsen


  • Neil Genzlinger

    The intriguing CW series Frequency starts out looking as if it were going to be a bittersweet, nostalgia-tinged time-travel drama in the Stephen King-Twilight Zone lineage, and that probably would have made for a comfortably satisfying show, the kind you can half-watch while doing something else. In the last third of the premiere, though, things take a joltingly different, more complicated path. Sorry, couch potatoes, but it looks as if you might have to keep both eyes on the screen for this one.

  • Rob Owen

    Easily fall’s best broadcast network comedy pilot, NBC’s The Good Place offers a clever high-concept premise that’s complemented with intelligent, sometimes absurdist humor. Created by Michael Schur, co-creator of NBC’s Parks and Recreation, The Good Place is a highly serialized series that’s essentially set in heaven and stars Kristen Bell and Ted Danson. NBC made five episodes of The Good Place available for review, and the show not only holds up, but also it improves, deepening characters that initially feel one-note and frequently leaving viewers guessing with cliffhanger endings to many of the episodes. The combination of snappy dialogue and winning but flawed characters makes The Good Place a great bet for fans of smart TV comedy.

  • Maureen Ryan

    Pitch has swagger, for good reason. It gets the big things right; the Fox drama about the first female baseball player in the Major Leagues is one of the year’s most assured and exciting debuts. But part of what impresses about the pilot is also the way it confidently strings together so many small but telling details. Ginny (Kylie Bunbury) is the first woman to be called up from the minors to the big leagues, and no show since Friday Night Lights has done a better job of portraying the internal and external pressures that weigh heavily on young athletes asked to do much more than merely succeed on the field. Pitch will likely do a good job of getting viewers to root for it. The hope is that the show won’t be an impressive, short-lived curiosity, but rather a long-term phenomenon.

  • Kevin Fallon

    In a fall TV season that’s already making a splash for championing diverse, distinctive voices in an array of projects that they created, wrote, and starred in, Better Things on FX stands out. The show is created by, written by, and starsPamela Adlon. She plays Sam Fox, the single mother of three daughters modeled after her own reality-show-ready experience raising three girls in Los Angeles following a divorce. Sam is also, like Adlon, a working actress — on shows both raunchy, a la Californication, and animated for children, like her role on Recess. It’s a refreshingly blunt take on single motherhood without sacrificing the warmth of parental love, portraying the dance between selfishness and selflessness that’s at the heart of being a parent — especially one weathering the hormonal fireworks of a household of four women at different ages.

  • David Wiegand

    The fall TV season doesn’t count as much as it used to — we already know that. But no matter how many retreads the broadcast networks throw at viewers in the next few months, this fall will be memorable because of the premiere of Atlanta on Tuesday, Sept. 6, on FX. The half-hour comedy created by and starring Donald Glover (Community), simply and brilliantly recalibrates our expectations of what a TV comedy is and how black lives are portrayed on the medium.

  • Louisa Ada Seltzer

    The second reboot of the 1980s John Candy movie Uncle Buck, bumped by ABC from midseason, has the same tired jokes you'll find on any second-rate sitcom. Too bad, because Mike Epps is appealing and ABC would be wise to keep him around for future shows, but there’s just not enough to this show to suggest it will last past summer. It also airs against NBC’s America’s Got Talent, summer’s No. 1 program on broadcast, which may make it even harder to find an audience.

  • Neil Genzlinger

    Bryan Cranston brings his Tony Award-winning interpretation of President Lyndon B. Johnson to television in an adaptation of the Robert Schenkkan play All the Way, and it’s still quite a sight to behold, just as it was on Broadway in 2014. Nothing beats witnessing this kind of larger-than-life portrayal onstage, of course. But the television version, presented by HBO, offers plenty of rewards, allowing Cranston to work the close-ups and liberating him from the confines of a theater set. Cranston’s performance is a gem — in his hands, this accidental president comes across as an amazing bundle of contradictions, someone who seems at once too vulgar for the job and just right for it.

This advertisement will close automatically in  second(s). You will see this ad no more than once a day. Skip ad