DV to Broadcast PAG MC 124 Charger Sony DXC325 camera Alice MSU10 dual PPM/monitor unit Quartz Polaris 1KW fresnel
Sony PDX-10 mini DVCAM camera 650W Pulsar lamphead Audio 2020 diversity UHF radio mic KeyWest BVV2S YUV>SDI encoder SQN Mixer in Portabrace shoulder bag Flying Cow 24bit audio D/A & A/D converter
Panamic boom pole Canon J14x8 2/3" lens Production Support & Consultancy Sennheiser MKH 416 short gun mic Micron VHF CNS radio mic TX/RX Audio Developments AD145 Pico Mixer

0161 736 5300 

Allen & Heath G2 audio mixer MUSA video patch bay Tektronix 1731 Waveform Monitor 300/500W Mizar fresnel spotlight Libec H80 fluid head & carbon fibre tripod legs Audio PPMs - euro-style
Beyer DT48 headphones Micron VHF Radio Mic channel Sony ECM77B microphone Sony DXC30P & DSR1 DVCAM camera Services & Equipment

800W Ianiro RedHead

for Production Support & Consultancy, Services & Equipment


Martin Kay at ZEN

in Manchester

More about:

Panasonic HMC151 AVCHD camera review

History of Caption Generation for TV, inc the Aston 4

What do you mean by Production Support?

At the simplest level, it includes the provision of any of the services or equipment listed here, but ideally it involves a more holistic approach.

One of the problems with traditional production methods was the narrow demarcation of individual jobs, particularly between shooting and post-production. Cameramen and Sound Recordists, however skilled, rarely had to edit their own material. Post-production workers rarely went on location. This can leave editors moaning about the quality of material supplied,  and location crews thinking that editors are not making the best use of what they've been given.

The one thing that nearly everyone can agree on is the need for planning, and that the majority of production problems come from the lack of it.

My concept of Production Support is that it should start as early in the production process as possible, and continue through for as far as possible. Flattering though it may be to be called in to rescue a potential disaster, most of us would be just as happy to help avoid one in the first place.

For example, the quality of video on the web can be more dependent on shot choice and shooting style, than the technical differences between different encoding formats.

So whatever assistance you require, be it a single specialist service or piece of kit, through to producing a complete  programme segment, the more involvement you give me, the better the job I can do for you. 

TV ad for Bingo.com shot at South Manchester Studios
Acting as "lighting sound recordist" on a low-budget TV commercial 

Why DV2Broadcast?

Because my recent move back towards doing more production work was triggered by a request to carry out the "broadcast mastering" for a series of six half-hour regional programmes shot on DV-CAM, and edited with Adobe Premiere Pro.

The series was successfully re-commissioned and a further eight programmes were produced last year, only this time my role extended to the location sound recording as well, partly as a result of my complaints about the recorded sound quality on the first series. 

I've also mastered to DigiBeta a few commercials, shows for Men & Motors, and ten episodes (the second series) of Locks & Quays for Discovery, all of which were shot on DV. So preparing DV for broadcast is one specific service I can offer.

On a broader note, the name means that I can cover all genres and quality levels from what is associated with DV at a semi-pro level, right though to the more traditional levels of broadcast work.

Part of my edit suite at Salford Quays
Some of my monitoring equipment

What about
non-broadcast work?

Always welcome! My personal job satisfaction comes from achieving good results, no matter who the audience is going to be.

I keep mentioning my broadcast work because that's how I was trained, and I always approach every job with those techniques in mind. Video programmes are such that the end result will always expose the weakest link in the production process. Talent and luck can give you the high points, but it's care, or lack of it, which usually dictates the lows.

Avoiding shooting unusable material can ultimately save time and money. Even broadcasters have budget restrictions, but the key to delivering value-for-money is knowing how to get the most out of what you've got to work with. It often takes no more time and effort to apply those same broadcast standards to every job.

My personal edict on getting good recordings is not to hit the Record button unless you're pretty sure you're getting what you want, and then to hit the Stop button if you're not. If something isn't right, don't just carry on, try to change it. If anyone makes a mistake, do it again. It's obvious really; you just have to do it!

The Art of Good Sound - when to say "No"   read here


Who are you?

Martin KayI'm Martin Kay, and I've been involved with television in one form or another since I joined Granada TV in 1973. Alongside my TV job I've also been working with computers since 1979 when I bought my first computer (in kit form) whilst on a shoot for World In Action in the USA.

I served my GTV apprenticeship as a studio sound engineer, then moved to film as a Boom Operator and was promoted to a full Sound Recordist in 1980. I've worked on every type of programme from news, sport, current affairs, music and the arts, through to dramas of every genre, including an 18 month stint on The Jewel In The Crown (for which I got a BAFTA nomination )

Filming for Jewel in the Crown in India, 1983

After 20yrs in the front line of programme acquisition, I left Granada to concentrate on my computer interests, with the focus on video-related applications. This coincided with the emergence of desktop video (capture & editing), and through ZEN Computer Services I've been building and supporting NLE & computer/video systems for over 10yrs.

Now, having had a break from production, and with my extended range of skills and experience, I'm keen to put it all together into a multi-skilled role encompassing all areas of video production. I've done a few broadcast jobs in the last few years, on location (doing sound) and in post production (online editing, grading & audio dubbing) and it's whetted my appetite for more!

TV work includes...

Whilst at Granada '73-'93:-
Afghan Exodus
All for Love
Bulman (Don Henderson)
Busman's Holiday
Celebration (local arts)
Coronation Street
Down to Earth
Ewan MacColl (a profile)
Flying Start
Gardeners' Calendar
Green Life Guide
Hard Times
Home Front (Ray Gosling)
In Suspicious Circumstances
Inside Europe
It was 20yrs ago today (Sgt Pepper)
Jewel in the Crown
Laurence Olivier Presents
My Father's House
Secret Orchards of Roger Ackerley
September Song (Russ Abbott)
Shang-a-lang (yes, I was there...)
Sherlock Holmes (Jeremy Brett)
So It Goes (with Tony Wilson)
Spike Milligan (a profile)
Staying On
The Christians (Bamber Gascoyne)
This England (various)
This Morning
Union World
University Challenge
World in Action (various)

...and many others, not forgetting

Granada Reports (local news) - with Bob Greaves, Brian Trueman, Tony Wilson, Gordon Burns, Anna Ford, Bob Smithies, Richard & Judy (before they were "Richard & Judy"), Fred Talbot and many more.

Memorable moment -
Spending a night in Toxteth during the 1981 riots.

Granada were about as popular as the police and we got a brick through our Volvo's window as we were arriving shortly after midnight. For much of the night we were right behind the police front lines as the petrol bombs came flying over. As it got light the crowds dispersed and we surveyed the damage. There was a long line of police Transit vans all along Upper Parliament Street, and not one had its windscreen intact. It was not long after this that they installed the protective slide-down mesh screens which you see today.

Computer programming '87-'99:-
on dramas, for computers as props
Cold Feet
A Touch of Frost
Game Set & Match
Prime Suspect
The Cloning of Joanna May
Wipe Out

scoring for sports & game shows
ITV Snooker
Granada Rugby League
Kick Off
The Krypton Factor

subtitling software used on
Disappearing World (ITV)
Everyman (BBC)
Great Railway Journeys (BBC)
World in Action (ITV)


What can you offer?

Given the amount of low-cost technology available today, there's never been a better time for getting high-quality results from small-scale TV production, but only if:-
1) you know how to use it!
2) there's not any "missing links".

That's where I come in. I can be a consultant, contributor, supplier and operator, all on the same job. I offer true multi-skilling, not because I'm fresh from a multi-discipline media course, but because of a lifetime of actual work experience in a variety of areas, coupled with a high degree of technical knowledge.

The areas I cover include:-
Sound Recording (for docs, drama, music, location or studio)
Video Encoding (eg for the web)
A/V Engineering (eg wiring design)
Digital Stills
Image Processing
(in Photoshop)
Video Editing (Avid, Premiere, etc)
Broadcast Mastering
Audio Track-Laying
Studio Design
PC Servicing & Setup
Video Camerawork
Technical Management
DVD Authoring
Script Editing
(without SatNav!)
Audio Dubbing
Picture Grading
(in Avid or Premiere)

I have collected a whole variety of kit over the years (including everything pictured above) which can be hired as part of the package. This includes camera & sound shooting kit, editing & monitoring, and lots of converters & adaptors for connecting things together. Here's some of it -

Edit Kit - Avid Xpress Pro with SDI Mojo, Adobe Premiere Pro with RTX2/100 & Decklink hardware

Lights - 1KW & 300/500W fresnels, 650/800W Red-heads & stands. 3Channel dimmer pack

Camera kit - Sony PDX10, DSR130 & DXC325 cameras, Heiwa 650 & Libec H80 tripods, Canon J14x8, Fuji 14x9 & 7x7 2/3" lenses.

Sound kit - SQN 3M & 4S, AD145 mixers, DT48 cans, Audio & Micron Radio Mics, 416 gun mics, Rycote windgags, Panamic poles, EMC 77,  AKG D25 & C451 mics, stands, cables, PPM meter boxes

Office space To Let - 1050sq ft on the first floor of our building
 (more info here)

Office space to let at Quays Reach, Salford Quays

I have my own commercial premises on a secure modern office park in Salford Quays (near the new BBC Media City site), in which I have my PC workshop and edit suite. There is also space for small-scale studio recording for things like interviews, voice-over recording and presenting to camera (with green-screen background & autocue).

Phone 0161 736 5300

Martin Kay

For editing systems, computer/video hardware & software, see

Computer video sales & support from ZEN

Used kit in the Car Boot Sale


I've stayed in touch with some of my Granada colleagues and can help put together a complete crew.

In particular, I've recently worked with cameraman Lawrence Jones, who also worked on The Jewel In The Crown, but more recently has been getting D.O.P. credits on TV dramas such as:-
Bad Girls
Born and Bred
Dalziel and Pascoe
Linda Green
My Beautiful Son
Playing the Field
The Royal
Waterloo Road

We would both welcome the opportunity to work together again, and Lawrence brings with him an impressive range of contacts, from top actors to specialist service providers. No matter what your production requirement, there's a fair chance that between us we'll know how to achieve it.   

Sample Gallery here


On the way to the Lake Palace, Udaipur, during Jewel in the Crown, with Producer/Director Chris Morahan

On the way to the Lake Palace, Udaipur, during Jewel in the Crown, with Producer/Director Chris Morahan

Audio 2020 diversity UHF radio mic Beyer DT48 headphones Sennheiser MKH 416 short gun mic Micron VHF CNS radio mic TX/RX DV to Broadcast

Copyright 2009 - All rights reserved. E&OE - Revised: 28 Apr, 09

...you can talk to Martin Kay on 0161 736 5300