What Is NBC Doing With 730,000 Feet of Cable at the Olympics?

By Charlie White
|  Friday, Feb 12, 2010  |  Updated 5:00 PM PDT
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What Is NBC Doing With 730,000 Feet of Cable at the Olympics?

When the 2010 Olympic Winter Games begin in Vancouver tonight, the athletes won't be the only ones nervous and excited about the outcome. Our sister company NBC has exclusive rights to the Vancouver Olympics, standing ready to bring the world's first all-HD Winter Olympics into your homes with a gigantic assortment of some of the most advanced broadcast technology the world has ever known. We have the inside scoop on what you'll see, and the mind-boggling numbers involved.

So what's new? Among NBC's newest innovations will be "Super Ski," a graphic showing the exact line the leader took down the hill, giving you an easy comparison to the current skier. During aerial skiing and snowboarding events, you'll see "StroMotion," a strobe effect illustrating the path of a flying trick much better than you can see in real time. And the ski jumping event will show a virtual "Line to Beat," showing the trajectory of the leader.

It takes a lot of people power and equipment to produce 835 hours of glitzy television coverage you'll see in the coming 16 days. While setting up for the big event, our NBC brethren compiled an impressive list of the sheer numbers involved in creating such a monumental 16-day broadcast. Continue reading, and you'll see that there's a whole lot more to putting together an Olympics broadcast than meets the eye:

900,000 gigabytes of HD video storage

400,000 feet of video cable

230,000 feet of audio cable (43 miles)

155,980 meals served in 16 days

79,707 square feet compound space at 19 venues

68,286 cups of coffee and tea

50,000 feet of triax cable

46,912 room nights in 15 hotels and 97 apartments

22,000 donuts

18,730 pounds of pasta ordered for the NBC commissary

15,000 blank videotapes

10,500 feet of fiber cable

10,000 archived video tapes

6,890 sets of Olympics schwag for the crew

2,500 color video monitors

2,168 NBC Olympic staff in Vancouver

835 hours of planned television coverage

800 hours of HD broadcast coverage at the Beijing Summer Olympics in 2008

416 total hours of NBC coverage of the Torino Olympics, the previous record

385 laptop computers

200 video recorders and 100 video servers

127 printers

110 NBC cameras

51 HD video servers

28 NBC edit rooms

26 Semi trucks hauling equipment

5 Mobile units

1 Fixed-wing aircraft

1 helicopter

1st all-HD Olympic Winter Games

Via NBC Universal Media Village, and internal NBC sources

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