Backpacking with the EnGo 260
Posted on May 27, 2021 by FEED Staff
The demand for portability within the broadcast industry has grown exponentially over the past few years, and the events of 2020 only accelerated this trend
Over the past year, the companies that have been pushed to the forefront are the ones that managed to stay ahead of the curve. And this also means the most versatile and portable products within the industry have been allowed to shine.
Cue Dejero and its portable EnGo 260 mobile transmitter, which has evolved over the last decade into a solution that resembles a satellite truck that can fit inside your backpack. Dejero’s senior technical product manager, Andy Clipsham, describes how Dejero was well prepared to take on the world of remote working when faced with the coronavirus pandemic.
“Broadcasters started working from home – from their living rooms, garages, dining tables…” he recalls. “They were sent home with the EnGo device, and an aspect of the device that became very useful during this period was a feature called ‘remote control’. The anchor can turn this on and someone from the station is completely able to control the EnGo – it’s like they’re at the screen and touching the buttons.”
As the EnGo 260 could be remotely controlled by the station, the anchors were freed from the complexity that comes with setting up a news broadcast in your living room during the onset of a global pandemic. Moreover, the news didn’t focus solely on Covid-19 during 2020. In fact, there was a bounty of high-profile events that took place and demanded the versatility of the EnGo.
“Let’s just look to America – there was the US election, so we were following the election trail all year,” explains Clipsham. “The election night itself was record-setting for us in terms of the amount of usage of the devices – and, of course, there were also the events at Capitol Hill and inauguration day”
The importance of covering these events shows the key role the transportable EnGo 260 played for the agile camera operator.
A different example of the importance of the EnGo’s portability includes Dejero’s work with Bottle Tree Pictures to livestream a celebrity chef fundraising event. “This is where the team would go into an actual restaurant and have a celebrity chef do something in this professional kitchen, but one of the issues
was that this is a restaurant that doesn’t want to give up a night of business,” says Clipsham. “The portability of the device was demonstrated when the team came in, did the shoot, finished and packed up everything. Then it’s back to being a normal restaurant very quickly – the EnGo 260 is very versatile and can be removed quickly.”
The EnGo 260 allows you to transmit live video quickly
As well as the EnGo itself being highly adaptable, there is also Dejero’s Vehicle Antenna Dock, an accessory that secures the EnGo in a broadcast vehicle, as well as allows it to connect to external high-gain antennae to boost cellular reception.
“In the Midwest, there’s a phenomenon called ‘storm chasing’. Broadcasters will go out and drive through remote terrain. They’ll often have a driver and the passenger is the reporter, and they’ve got cameras mounted around this truck, looking for dark clouds and debris and looking for the storm,” explains Clipsham.
The EnGo allows the reporter in the passenger seat to start transmitting live video quickly, without having to deal with racks of gear in the back.
“We’ve seen the satellite truck shrink down to an SUV, which is what most of the stations are using. It’s cheaper for them, more versatile and more flexible. It’s like ‘Uber’ reporting, where you can throw your gear in a bag, call an Uber and go to a scene, get out, and you’re off to the races,” says Clipsham.
Keep your eye on Dejero, which is constantly looking to expand its offering. It has recently launched a Windows application to further simplify the remote broadcast set-up, specifically, reporting from home.
This first featured in the Spring 2021 issue of FEED magazine.