MLB Network gives Studio 3 a big update for opening day

MLB Network lined up some high-tech studio upgrades for viewers for the delayed opening day of Major League Baseball’s 2022 season.

The network worked with Clickspring Design to update multiple venues in Studio 3 at its Secaucus, New Jersey, broadcast facility.

“While Studio 3 has always been the standard bearer for MLB Network, we wanted to carve out a dynamic area to allow for hands-on breakdowns and more interactivity,” said Susan Stone, SVP, operations and engineering at MLB network.

“Without any question, it was a huge uplift in case of technology in Studio 3,” said Clickspring’s Murat Ustuner. The team worked with integrator Grant AV to bring the millions of LED pixels to life with Avid Maestro providing video wall control.

Rendering of the Studio 3 design. Courtesy of Clickspring Design.

Rendering of the Studio 3 design.

The new tech included specialty curved DesignLED Amflex tiles in the new wild anchor desk that allows the network to showcase show titles and sponsor representation. 

The curved motif was continued throughout the overhauled space thanks to sweeping walls and dramatic arched header elements, some of them existing and others fabricated by Dimensional Worldwide.

Advertisement

The space above the set also features a ring of team logo elements, a feature that remain’s from the original Studio 3 design

Behind the anchor desk’s primary location, Clickspring also created a freestanding 30×11 foot curved LED video wall using SemiLumen 1.9mm tiles backed with a lightbox. This layering allows the network to leverage both hard scenery and video panels to create a look that has the advantages of a dynamic video wall but with depth and structure to it.

Camera left of this area is a new seamless video wall featuring 1.8mm SemiLumen tiles framed out by two diagonal strips with integrated lighting accents.

The wall continues to gently curve farther toward the north wall of the studio before meeting a point where it intersects with an additional new wall whose flat design is a strategic extension of an existing scenic tower.

Just before the two walls meet is a prominent dimensional MLB logo.

This space also boasts a 52-tile, walkable 2.6mm SemiLumen LED floor installed in a sleek riser ringed with backlit and metallic elements. 

“Adding a curved LED wall and a round floor LED space allows us to be nimbler, more creative, and ultimately better serve our fans,” said Stone.

The finished Studio 3 upgrade. Photo courtesy of MLB Network.

This allows the area to be used for a variety of purposes, including a demo area, where the floor LED can showcase an image of home plate while dynamic imagery is shown on the video wall. The floor can also showcase show or team branding and be used as a more informal anchor area.

Ultimately, Studio 3 is a multipurpose space, so Clickspring had to take that into consideration when designing the changes.

“What’s tricky in that space is there are three other sets with some common elements to our new area such as the scenic columns, a ring of team logos, and a header of sky lightboxes,” said Clickspring’s Emmett Aiello.

“We had to design a set that would visually fit in that context even though wide shots don’t tend to pick up the sum total of the four parts,” Aiello continued.

Clickspring also strategically struck out the notion of faux wood or brick surfaces suggestive of ballpark architecture in favor of sleek auto paint finishes and LED pinstripe details.

Advertisement

“We tried to keep things simple and bold and not too busy. The only real nod to a baseball field is carried by the demo area where floor LED can feature home plate or the pitcher’s mound,” explained Aiello.

Clickspring’s ground plan of the space showcases how the set connects with the existing venues.

Overall lighting design of the new area was handled by Eastern Lighting Design.

The MLB Network broadcasts from the same facility that MSNBC and NBC News used until 2007 and has called it home since launching in 2009.

Sign up for NewscastStudio's weekly newsletter.Our weekly newsletter delivers the latest broadcast industry news to your inbox including new debuts, case studies, thought leadership and broadcast gear updates.