October 02, 2023

VRT's multifunctional studio: a view to the future

VRT introduces a brand new, innovative studio to broadcast its current affairs programmes. In time, entertainment programmes will also use the creative possibilities of the new studio. To stay relevant in a rapidly changing media landscape, VRT fully explores the potential of virtual technologies for broadcasting.

Multifunctional: from camera angles to decor

As a media organisation, it is essential to keep innovating and respond to new opportunities and expectations. The multifunctional studio symbolises the future in which productions will become increasingly creative, efficient and accessible. The heart of the studio exists of an immense u-shaped LED wall, measuring 33 metres wide and 4 metres high. With the touch of a button, the space is given a new use with the highest image quality. Flexible and changeable set elements are able to create a new setting in no time.

To create a different environment, the game engine 'Unreal is used. This combination of game technology and classic broadcast technology is unique. The software offers endless creative possibilities to work with virtual environments and visual effects. In addition, it helps streamline production processes and also reduces production costs, such as the use of props. The studio space is optimally used at all levels.

News and entertainment

In the future, entertainment programmes will also be able to leverage the potential of the multifunctional studio and completely immerse viewers in another world. In the new multifunctional studio, we can quickly and efficiently switch to a completely different setting, so other programmes or projects (e.g. entertainment programmes or radio broadcasts) can also be recorded.

This is already a first step towards the future, where VRT's new building and limited studio spaces will ensure that programmes are set up in the most efficient and creative way possible.

"Current affairs and debate are more important than ever in these fast-changing and confusing times. With the integration of new technologies in the multifunctional studio, we can make the analysis and interpretation of news even more comprehensible and accessible to viewers. Ahead of the election year of 2024, we are fully committed to innovation, creativity and efficiency." - Liesbet Vrieleman, general editor-in-chief VRT NWS

"This multifunctional studio is a logical continuation of the innovation work VRT has already been doing in recent years. For quite some time we have been researching and testing how, among other things, game technology makes virtual media productions possible. With this new studio, we are turning the results of this innovation process into a sustainable investment in VRT's production infrastructure. With that, it is also an important step towards a new, efficient way of making media that we will fully apply in the new building." - Stijn Lehaen, general director Technology & Infrastructure

"Thanks to the large LED wall, we can support our stories even better with strong images and graphics, at any place in the studio. We will be able to introduce new narrative forms even faster in the future thanks to flexible set elements and the matching filling of the LED wall." - Christophe Janssens, Creative Director VRT NWS