Sochi 2014 promises revolutionary viewing

Spectators will be able to see the Sochi Winter Olympics in a way they have never seen them before. The latest hi-tech equipment that will be used to film the Games in 2014 has been unveiled.

The Winter Games will attract millions of viewers. Expectations and anticipation ahead of the start are high. And to satisfy viewers a special TV channel, Panorama, was launched in 2009.

Its goal is to establish a modern broadcasting complex providing TV, radio, internet and photographic coverage of Olympic events.

Sports fans will now be able to enjoy improved picture quality, and better all-round coverage.

The newly-purchased equipment was presented to members of the Supervisory Board of Sports Broadcasting this month – an organization headed by top government official Dmitry Kozak.

“Three major Russian TV channels have received government support and a unique opportunity to implement a true technological breakthrough in sports TV coverage, bringing the output quality up to the highest international standard. This will give our country sports coverage of outstanding quality. All fans can now enjoy a dramatically improved picture quality,” says Kazak.

A full range of shooting equipment including some unique developments by Russian engineers was presented such as the so-called Spidercam to film events from a bird’s-eye view. There are just four such cameras in the world. The Russian version will fly at a speed of eight meters per second, and can cover a territory of six football pitches or 20 ice-hockey rinks.

In order to get employees up to date with the new age of technology, Panorama implemented a special training program.

And they are wasting no time. The new equipment is already being used in covering events. The first big test though will be at the Alpine Skiing World Cup stage in Sochi in February. And later it will be used at the World Summer University Games in Kazan in 2013.

The organizers say their aim is to show Russian athletes at the Winter Olympics as much as possible, but at the same time to show them in comparison with other competitors. They will try to find a balance, so that it does not look one-sided.

The biggest sporting event in Russian history has already boosted development in many sectors.But it is only now that the technological breakthrough for domestic TV coverage is guaranteed.

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