PBS Special Uses Telemetrics Robotic Camera Systems

Twin Cities PBS recently used robotic camera control equipment from Telemetrics for a taping of Suze Orman at the New World Center in Miami.

The show, Suze Orman’s Ultimate Retirement Guide, was recorded for a special fundraising drive at numerous PBS stations across the country over the next year. A “pledge set portion” of the PBS show will be shot in Minneapolis in the next few weeks.

Twin Cities PBS used six PT-LP-S5 pan/tilt heads mounted throughout the New World Center as well as two Telemetrics Televator elevating pedestals with S5 pan/tilt heads on stage to capture Orman from every angle.

There were three live cameras in the audience, one Steadicam operator in front of the stage and two robotic operators in the control room overseeing a total of 14 cameras. Nine of these cameras were under the control of the two robotic operators (one camera was fixed) using two RCCP control panels. The camera shader had an additional RCCP panel to assist as needed.

According to Telemetrics, as a complete camera robotics system, the PT-LP-S5 servo-controlled pan/tilt heads, Televator pedestals and the RCCP camera controller system “ensures precise and accurate camera moves that remain consistent and repeatable every time. It also saves space, setup time and production costs.”

“The Televators worked perfectly for nice eye-level crowd shots taken from [Orman]’s POV,” said Dan Slentz, chief video engineer at the New World Center. “We have many of the Telemetrics Pan/Tilt head built-in and ready to go at any given moment.”


A unique counter-balancing system on the PT-LP-S5 enables quick, easy and accurate setup, even when a teleprompter, confidence monitor and other components are mounted on the head, according to Telemetrics. Multiple cameras can be quickly configured as pan, tilt and pedestal parameters are accessed via a push of a button on the camera base (eliminating the need for a dedicated control panel). In addition, LED indicators provide real-time warning if the load is out of balance.

The Televator series of elevating pedestals (available in multiple sizes) allows users to maximize space in small studios by mounting and remotely controlling cameras in a multitude of ways.

The RCCP Robotic Camera Control Panel includes a user-configurable control surface, and high-end processors to support complex automated key-frame based motion paths, as well as snapshot thumbnails for shot presets and live video preview. A single operator can now maneuver multiple cameras with powerful, yet natural control over complex camera moves.

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