Mobile Television Unit, Portable

Mobile Television Unit, Portable


a type of mobile television unit that is highly efficient, mobile, and self-contained. It is used to cover such happenings as sports events and television interviews. The unit is often operated together with a standard mobile television unit to supplement remote broadcasts with on-location events. Some portable units operate while in motion and can accompany a group of runners or cyclists. The units are usually ready for operation a few minutes after being brought to the scene of the event.

Portable mobile television units were first used early in the 1970’s, when lighter television equipment with semiconductor devices was manufactured. Mobile units are installed in the body of a microbus, whereas camera backpacks placed in a harness are worn by the cameraman or his assistant.

The portable mobile television unit usually has one or two miniature television cameras; those transmitting black-and-white images weigh from 2 to 3 kg, and those transmitting images in color weigh from 6 to 10 kg. Other types of cameras include hand-held minicameras and cameras that rest in a shoulder harness or on a small, light mobile base. The cameras are connected with the television equipment in the microbus by coaxial cable 100 to 200 m long or by a radio communications line. To transmit on-location events from the units to the studio, the radio communications channels of a standard mobile television unit may be used in conjunction with the portable mobile unit. A retransmitter installed in a special bus may also be used: it receives signals from the portable mobile unit’s low-capacity transmitter and transmits them to the studio along the radio relay line. Finally, transmission may be effected by means of a videotape recording on a portable videotape recorder located in the microbus or in the shoulder harness.


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