Innovision Featured in TV Technology
8/18/04, Atlanta, Georgia
Shuttle Camera Tracking System Spans 3 Studios at CNN
It’s been over 4 years since CNN opened their new studio facility complete with
104’ of curved overhead track that spans 2 newsrooms with clear views into
Studio A and the bustling control room. Gliding along the track is the remote
controlled Innovision Shuttle Camera Tracking System carrying a
Panasonic AWE 600 camera and Canon H15x6 zoom complete with gyro stabilizer. For
a year and a half the world’s audience saw a unique view of CNN’s bustling team
every half hour, 24/7, as the Shuttle scooted with ease overhead for the opening
sequence of each half hour news report.
It was CNN’s Jake Carreau, who was responsible for getting the system installed.
After doing extensive research and meeting with Innovision’s Mark Centkowski at
NAB, Jake chose the Shuttle mainly because Innovision was ready to accept the
challenge of installing curved track. And indeed today, the track meanders
overhead, forming left and right curves.
According to Steve Holzapfel, CNN Robotics supervisor, “For the opening
sequence, our shot moved from side to side and ended in a quick zoom in on the
CNN logo on the wall. The system allowed us to preprogram 3 or 4 different moves
including movement along the track as well as panning (up to 350-degrees) and
zooming. We never had to reset the shot because it was stored in the memory.
After programming it once, we just hit the button.”
The dynamic Shuttle system is controlled remotely by an operator in the control
Today it is likely you’ll find Ola Khristoffersen, CNN Audio/Robotics Operator
at the controls. According to Khristoffersen, “Now we use the Shuttle mainly for
bump pad shots--going into and out of breaks--and for newsroom overheads. It
allows us to pad the cut to break if we come out somewhat early. Essentially it
takes the place of a jib camera and it can be run by a Robo operator. With a jib
camera you have limited options. The Shuttle allows greater variety and gives me
more creativity. And because of the curved track we have greater options and
capabilities.” Ola also commented on how easy it is to use they system. Although
most of his shots are freehand, he notes that if they want specific opening
sequences preprogrammed, he can make it happen in 5 or 10 minutes.
When asked about Innovision’s service support, Steve Holzapfel was unable to
comment, because nearly 5 years after installation, the system has never needed
For more information about the HD Probe lens visit the
product page or contact Innovision-Optics at 1-310-453-4866.