The Great Climb

The challenge the BBC set for Timeline was one of the most extreme we have ever encountered.

Timeline were asked to supply a complete flyaway kit to produce a 7 hour live rock climb on a imposing crag, in a highly remote Highland location with no road access.

As the mountain was an hour’s walk from the nearest road, the flyaway had to be redesigned to be transported in a basket that would hang below a helicopter.

Timeline kitted out 2 flat pack cabins – one for the production gallery, sound and technical areas and the other for 2 HD EVSs to play in all inserts, provide replays and cut recaps. It also housed HD Final Cut Pro laptops, used to cut stories.

From these cabins we ran cables 1 km to the base of the mountain where we set up 2 tents – one used for a commentary area complete with 2 commentary cameras and the other for technical equipment.

The BBC used 5 EX3 radio cameras which were hung on ropes for the climbing cameramen to operate. A land based camera with a 86:1 lens and a presenter camera were installed at the foot of the mountain.

A Yamaha LS9 32 Audio Desk was used to mix the show with live radio camera feeds from the climbers and climbing experts sent back to base camp. A Riedel talkback matrix provided full communication facilities including talkback to the climbers’ ears.

Over the course of the seven hours BBC Scotland and BBC HD channel viewers watched live as Dave MacLeod and Tim Emmett successfully conquered the crag. Despite torrential rain and high winds the show went without a hitch and proved our company motto – Timeline, Broadcast Anywhere!

The equipment we used included:

  • 2*Panasonic AV-HS450 Mixers
  • 8*AJA FS1s
  • 1*72×144 HD Matrix
  • 1*Yamaha LS9-32 Audio Mixer
  • 1*32×32 Riedal Talkback Matrix
  • 2*Sony 1500 Fibre Cameras
  • 2*AG-HMR10 Comm Cameras
  • 5*Sony EX3 Cameras with LINK Radio Transmitters
  • 1*FCP Laptop
  • 2*HD EVS XT2s

More Case Studies

Racing UK

Facilities Build


IP Director Network