Seacrest Studios Comes to Cincinnati Children's Hospital

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The Ryan Seacrest Foundation inspires youth through entertainment- and education-focused initiatives. This includes building broadcast media centers, named Seacrest Studios, in pediatric hospitals for patients to explore the creative realms of radio, television and new media.

Seacrest Studios, Cincinnati

The Foundation opened its sixth Seacrest Studios pediatric location on November 18 at The Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center following openings in Atlanta, Philadelphia, Dallas, Charlotte, and Orange County, CA. As with previous locations, the Cincinnati project utilized labor and equipment donations from broadcasters and industry vendors to design and build the studio. Clear Channel Communications played an integral role in training hospital staff, interns and in-house tech support, including equipment operation and on-air programming. A Clear Channel integration team led by Dan Mettler also came to the site to help wire, connect and test all radio equipment.

Seacrest Studios creates a fully professional broadcast and production space with a comfortable learning curve and wiring environment. This is ideal for encouraging patients to contribute, and accommodating local broadcasters who wish to do remote broadcasts from the studio. The Cincinnati location retains this concept as in previous deployments, and adds some unique design and operational characteristics.

The facility produces more than just radio programming. Video cameras and a backdrop screen make this a multimedia space.

The facility produces more than just radio programming. Video cameras and a backdrop screen make this a multimedia space.

Most studios to date are built using existing empty space. This is also the case in Cincinnati, where the hospital engineering staff carved out a 970 square-foot space in the atrium, testing and measuring all electrical loads in advance of integration. The team was able to use existing electrical runs, with minimal new wiring required to support the on-air and production workflow. Most of the components in that workflow - including some cameras, a green screen and other video equipment - are located within the cozy space.

Perhaps most interesting is the absence of a central rack room - at least in the traditional sense. Instead, all live radio and TV signals produced in-house are multiplexed and routed across several destinations before being modulated within the hospital TV headend. The radio broadcast and accompanying video signals are broadcast to 700 TVs on Channel 33, and the overall architecture is a seamless marriage of cutting-edge broadcast technologies and legacy hospital RF systems.

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