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CBS to debut 'Doink' and 'Red Cat' cameras at Super Bowl

“Technology will be the star” of Super Bowl LVIII, Harold Bryant, executive vice president of production at CBS Sports, said during a media session last week.

The Paramount Global PARA, 0.54% broadcast network is sending 1,000 staff members to Las Vegas, where the San Francisco 49ers and Kansas City Chiefs will face off at Allegiant Stadium amid a caravan of production trucks and mountains of video and audio equipment. Some 200 people will also work on the telecast remotely.

CBS Sports plans to use a record 165 cameras, many of them with high-definition 4K resolution, during the game, according to Patty Power, executive vice president of operations and engineering at CBS Sports. Robotic cameras perched atop the Strat, Planet Hollywood and Mandalay Bay hotels and the glitzy new Sphere concert venue will offer panoramic views of the Las Vegas Strip during the game. An array of high-definition cameras will cover shots from Allegiant Stadium’s ceiling, goal lines and end-zone pylons.

The “doink cameras” may create the most buzz. These cameras, set into the goalpost uprights in both end zones, will be able to capture never-before-seen angles of field goals and extra points — including the missed field goals that famously make a “doink” sound when they hit the uprights or crossbar.

The uprights will each have three of these cameras facing the field at different angles. CBS was granted permission by the NFL to embed the cameras after it submitted engineering plans to prove to the league that the integrity of the goalposts wouldn’t be affected, said Jason Cohn, vice president of remote technical operations at CBS Sports.

The network tested the doink cameras during a preseason game at MetLife Stadium, home of the New York Giants and the New York Jets, and during an October regular-season game at Allegiant Stadium.

Another new camera, the “Red Cat cam,” manufactured by RED Digital Cinema, will be set up in the stadium’s catwalks to offer a bird’s-eye view of the goal line.


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