Broadcast News

Bookmark and Share

To Build Or Not To Build?

News Image
Trickbox TV’s Director Liam Laminman on how building your own in-house studio can save money in the long run...

Ever dreamt about having your own in-house studio? Well, it might not be such a far-fetched idea…
No longer are television studios reserved for broadcasters and news organisations. For production companies, having the ability to produce your own programmes in-house is an attractive option. Not only are there cost savings but it also aids workflow and the ‘convenience factor’ is undeniable. So how do you go about getting hold of your own in-house studio? Well, let's look at space first. Are you lucky enough to have a vacant area in your premises?
At Trickbox, we’ve converted meeting rooms, offices and basements into studios; even large corridors! You might not want to lose that meeting room but, remember, if you turn it into a studio you can monetise that space. Of course, then there are the costs attached with building a studio. It's all very well assuming you can save money by doing everything in-house, but is it more cost effective? I mean, who wouldn't want their own studio?! But let's be realistic – there will be a fairly large upfront cost.
Even if you finance all the equipment – which we'll come back to later – there's still going to be the cost of the build and the infrastructure. Plus, all the M&E (mechanical and electrical) services, such as aircon and power need to be considered. However, those costs can be recouped if your need for a studio is great enough.
An indicative example of an average cost of hiring a multi-camera, crewed, studio in London can be anything from £3,000 to £10,000 (+ VAT). Let's say you're hiring a studio once a week, every week for £5,000, that's £240,000 over a year. And that’s just one year…
So what about all that expensive equipment you’re going to need to kit out your new studio? The last ten years has seen the cost of broadcasting and webcasting equipment reduce dramatically, despite the paradox of technology advancing. As well as lower cost, video equipment is now more compact and can offer more features than before. Vision mixers – often the heart of any studio – are a lot more affordable these days.
One of the big areas where you might have to spend is on your cameras. The size of the studio and what you're planning on using it for will dictate how many you need, and also what type. Will you want remote control cameras or traditional studio cameras? Do you need your studio cameras to double up as location ENG cameras when they're not being used?
Over recent years the cost of broadcast cameras has reduced or, to be more accurate, a wider range of lower-spec broadcast cameras have hit the market, all of which come with attractive price tags. Cameras such as the Sony HDC-1500 and its newer replacement, the HDC-2500, are a mainstay of the broadcast studio industry. In the studio and OB world, these fibre-based cameras come as full camera channels including CCUs and RCPs. But at £75,000 for a complete channel, that's not going to fit in everyone's budget.
Recent years has also seen a rash of lower-spec, more compact studio cameras come onto the market. Manufacturers like Panasonic and JVC make some cost effective studio camera channel solutions. Even Sony make a range of studio camera systems –aimed at smaller production companies, corporate firms and the events and AV market. These camera systems are perfect if you're thinking about an in-house studio. They're still broadcast quality, but they don't have as many features as their more expensive counterparts. If you're building a small in-house studio then you probably don't need a camera system that runs on fibre cable (which can run for miles). You probably also don't need to shoot slo-mo or at 50 frames progressive! 
So how are you going to pay for it? If you’re lucky enough to have some spare cash under your pillow, then great. But if not, leasing and financing could the way forward. That may sound a bit scary, but it's really no different to taking out a mortgage - no one usually buys their house outright! The only difference is that a mortgage is usually spread over a long repayment period. When you finance equipment, specifically broadcast equipment, it's usually over a relatively short period of time, often three years.
It's also worth noting that any broadcast equipment you finance is eligible as part of your annual investment allowance (AIA)
So it looks like that in-house studio dream could be a reality.
Call Liam Laminman at Trickbox TV on 0207 193 9722 to see how we can help.

Read the article in the online edition of Regional Film & Video here.
Solidmate Ltd Memory Card Hire London

Top Related Stories
Click here for the latest broadcast news stories.

Agile Remote Cameras Launches New PTZ Cameras & Controller
Agile Remote Cameras has announced the launch of two new PTZ cameras, each with a unique modular design, plus a desktop camera controller. The ARC360
Absen LED Revamps Hungary's TV2 Studio
Hungary's TV2's Tenyek has invested in Absen as part of its studio redesign, to keep it as fresh and current as the news it airs. The news programme o
New Price Point For Atomos Shogun Studio
Atomos have confirmed a new price point for their Shogun Studio rack-mounted, two-channel 4K/HD recorder and playback desk with dual 7" IPS monitors.
The Future Of UK Studio Build
Amadeus Acoustic Solutions' BOXY modular studio system enjoyed a highly successful debut at BVE 2017 with visitors queuing to sample the room's enviro
Quasar Science Joins Forces With Matthews Studio Equipment
Quasar Science has joined forces with Burbank-based Matthews Studio Equipment to create the future of LED rigging support. Utilizing MSE's new MyWayGr
Sonifex Mixers Selected For University Radio Studio
Sonifex S2 mixers and S2 Solutions furniture have been installed at Rebel, a Students' Union radio station based at Essex University in Colchester. Ho
Changing Studio Requirements
When we opened our studios in 2008 it was in the belief that there would be an inevitable demand for online videos, writes Andy Woodruff, Camberwell S
PreSonus Releases Studio One Free
PreSonus is now shipping Studio One Free, a new entry-level version of its popular DAW for Mac and Windows. Intended for beginners who don’t yet need
NFTS Opens 4K Digital Content Training Studio & Hub
The National Film and Television School (NFTS) officially opens the Sony Gallery, which is located in its ground-breaking 4K Digital Content Training
Custom Consoles Celebrates 21 Years of Studio Desk Innovation
Custom Consoles this year marks 21 successful years as a world-leading innovator in the design and production of broadcast control room desks and stud
Radford Uni Upgrades Educational Television Production Studio
Radford University has recently upgraded its educational television production studio to a fully HD environment. The school purchased four Z-HD5000 ca
Vintage Studio To Handle Unity Audio Distribution
In another first for Unity Audio, the Vintage Studio in Bangkok has become a new distributor for Unity Audio products in Southeast Asia countries. Kno
JTV Acquires Additional Hitachi 12 Z-HD6000 Cameras
Jewelry Television (JTV) leverages an omni-digital strategy designed to elevate their customers' experience through digitally-driven touchpoints inclu
Sony Announces New Home Studio Software Upgrades
Sony Creative Software, a leading provider of professional video and audio editing applications, today announced the availability of the latest upgrad
UK Studios: An International Success Story
It has often been said that Hollywood is the most recognisable film industry in the world, with hundreds of movies and television series generated eve