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NJTV News Segments Get Stunning Skyline View, Thanks to Daylight Control

PBS station NJTV brings arts, education, and public affairs programming to all of New Jersey, as well as neighboring states, from facilities including the Strategic Development Group Studio at the New Jersey City University (NJCU) School of Business.

NJTV has partnered up with NJCU to report on business and financial news from a presentation area with a windowed backdrop on the Jersey City waterfront that overlooks Wall Street. Located at Harborside Plaza 2 in the Jersey City financial district, right on the Hudson River, the site has an amazing view of the Manhattan skyline, and most notably the stunning Freedom Tower.

Because the windows look east across the water at Manhattan’s financial center, afternoon shoots face the challenge of handling the reflections on both buildings and the river caused by the western sun. The problem varies in intensity, depending on the season, so in the past, it has been necessary to apply gels to the windows on a seasonal basis.

While this solution worked, every installation of gels every season required one day of labor, creating a significant annual cost. With fixed gels on the windows, shoots suffered less from a blown-out background but lacked the flexibility to adapt on a daily basis to natural lighting conditions.

The Lighting Design Group (LDG at ldg.com) is responsible for lighting the NJTV show, and the company brought us in to deliver a more flexible and efficient solution. The resulting automated, battery-powered Broadcast Blinds system includes Lee Neutral Density (ND) gels to help NJTV to take full advantage of the unique vista behind the presenters’ desk. Users can quickly and easily adjust daylight control to accommodate changing light conditions. The system installed at the NJCU site is simple, but it has made a world of difference in production of news and finance segments shot at the harborside location.