Articles tagged #4K
Videocraft gets Mobile for Red Bull Wings for Life Run
Wings for Life World Run is the unique charity event that raises money by running for those who can’t. The twist? Everyone runs worldwide, on the same day, at the same time creating a race of epic proportions with runners chased by Catcher Cars to literally catch the runners not running towards a finish line but away from the finish line and culminating in just one lone runner left at the end. The OB for the Australian run, held in Victoria, was provided by Videocraft. Wings for Life World Run’s Australian production company was the award-winning Screencraft and their Michael Fardell explained some of the challenges involved in this year’s event, “The run kicked off at 1pm in Austria – home of Red Bull – which was 9pm in Melbourne. As the runners set off and try to get as far away as possible the Catcher Cars follow thirty minutes later. Bearing in mind the logistics with this event runners can get up to 80km from the start point so we needed the most flexible and nimble OB solution possible. I’m delighted to say Videocraft gave us just that.” After discussions with Videocraft’s MD James Taylor the company provided not only their fully-loaded, state of the art OB truck for the event but also an ingenious and cost effective mobile broadcasting solution. Fardell continued, “Videocraft had four wired OB cameras at the start line. Then, once the race started they had four mobile cameras on motorbikes following the runners and doing interviews along the way. The key here was that all the links were provided by 4G bonded streaming solutions.” On the ground and on the motorbikes Videocraft deployed four Teradek Bond 2 Encoders that were securely linked to Teradek Sputnik servers in the cloud. The Sputnik servers were in turn downlinked to the Videocraft OB truck and decoded using Teradek Cube decoders. Fardell added, “This was a brilliant, cost effective and efficient solution as we were able to broadcast the OB using 4G on the cameras and didn’t need to use helicopters which would have been tricky at night and very expensive. Once the footage arrived in Videocraft’s truck they switched and dealt with it as they would any normal camera source.” Although the clever OB solution was completely reliant on mobile communication lines Videocraft were still able to factor in redundancy and mobile dead zones by using multiple carriers and extracting the highest possible data rates. Fardell commented, “The data rates Videocraft were able to get were so high that we did the entire broadcast in HD. Quite a feat. Once we’d ingested the footage we then sent it to the Austrian world feed and received back the World Programme so people in Australia would watch the entire worldwide event. Again, quite a logistical feat.” In total there were 34 outside broadcasts worldwide all with no fixed end point and all of which covered a significant amount of terrain. This complicated set of variables meant advanced planning was key. Fardell explained, “Videocraft did their homework beforehand and checked there was mobile coverage with at least one carrier in all areas. The fact that there was enabled the four mobile cameras to be switched live in 4G and for me showed us the future for certain types of OB jobs. As this type of mobile solution becomes more robust it will only improve. This also means companies like Videocraft can offer live links for events at a reasonable cost that previously would have cost thousands and involved helicopters and satellite trucks.” In reality, for what was a very broad event geographically it was only the first 500 metres that were covered by fixed wired cameras. The other 79.5km was all covered by Videocraft’s mobile 4G camera solution and OB truck. Michael Fardell concluded, “I can’t speak highly enough about Videocraft or the mobile OB solution they provided. There were no drop-outs, black-outs or time lost for refueling. The only downtime during the entire event was a two minute battery change on the cameras. The 4G solution they provided us with was slick and efficient and proved to me that a new era in mobile broadcasting has arrived.”
Videocraft Scores Hole-in-One at Oates Victorian Golf
The Oates Victorian Open is one of the premier events on the Australian golf calendar. Both men's and women’s championships are played simultaneously over four days at the beautiful 13th Beach golf course. This year organisers Golf Victoria wanted to raise the standard and level of innovation higher than ever before and include live streaming of the tournament. For that they turned to Sean Mulcahy from Australian Network Productions and Videocraft who provided all the OB and live streaming facilities. Mulcahy explained, “This event has gone from strength to strength and the addition of live streaming really took it to new heights. As a result I wanted an OB company that were innovative and that I could trust. Having dealt with Videocraft for years I knew they would be the perfect OB partner. They are a boutique operation who have great people like Andy Liell and Mark Grooby on their team, stock the very latest in equipment, have great local support and backup and a fantastic work ethic.” Having again been entrusted with the coverage of the Oates Victorian Open, the job of integrating live streaming and knowing golfing superstars including Karrie Webb, Nick Cullen and Richard Green would be taking part Mulcahy knew a great tournament awaited them and for that they needed to provide the very best services to meet expectations. He continued, “We asked Videocraft for a professional, high quality production and live streaming solution that could be backed up and supported by a substantial local presence and be very cost efficient to work within our tight budget. I’m delighted to say they 100% delivered. Most impressive was the way they answered all of our requirements with the utmost dedication and commitment. This meant I could trust them as I always have and knew I could rely on their solution.” Mulcahy and the Videocraft team designed and implemented a flexible and powerful onsite OB setup that included Yamaha audio, six channels of EVS, a Blackmagic 4K switcher, Ross Xpression graphics and RF links all based around Videocraft’s unique FlyPack. With the production day at the Open starting early and the live feed going to air at midday everyone on the team had to be prepared.Mulcahy added, “Videocraft live switched the coverage whilst also integrating EVS replays and packages. The entire event was then played out to the Open’s official YouTube channel via a Livestream box. The aim was to provide a more intimate and informal coverage that included talking with the players in between shots. This also meant we had to be nimble and agile. We also set up a marquee where a host did player interviews. All in all the production was slick and efficient.” With a tight budget but a requirement for high production values Mulcahy and the Videocraft team in conjunction with the crew produced an end result which spoke volumes for the kind of OB production Videocraft has made such a name for itself in. Sean Mulcahy concluded, “I am extremely proud of our team for the job they did at the Oates Victorian Open. For such a small operation, the product was outstanding and in my view, has revolutionised golf coverage. Golf Victoria were ecstatic with the result and rightfully so as they can now comfortably lay claim to this country's most exciting golf tournament. I must again thank Videocraft who really went above and beyond in terms of service. They were committed, dedicated and professional at all times from prep to tournament to pack up and debrief, striving always to produce a job that everyone would be happy with. I genuinely couldn’t have done it without them.” To view some of the material that was streamed go to http://www.golfvic.org.au/oatesvicopenlive
NAB Show 2016 - Day 1 Highlights
The first day of the NAB Show has wrapped up in Vegas. The Videocraft team on the ground have been posting snippets of what is on the show floor and we have been wading through the press release announcements here at the office. Here are a few things that caught our eye and there will be more, make sure you are following us on social media (see the links in the footer of this page) for the most up-to-date information.
We highlighted the Sony Press conference on our social media yesterday but in case you missed it, you can view it here . Sony's key announcements were across a wide range of products including a NEW 4K HDR Monitor the PVMX550 which supports High Dynamic Range display and a wide colour gamut supporting DCI-P3 and most of the ITU-R BT.2020 standard. It also has inbuilt a quad view display, with Individual settings of EOTF(SDR/HDR), colour space, Transfer Matrix, Color Temperature, contrast, brightness, SDI/HDMI, RGB/YCBCR, etc. for each display There was a new recorder for F5 and F55 Cameras announced - the AXS-R7. Compared to previous Sony 4K recorders, the AXS-R7 Portable Memory Recorder doubles 4K RAW recording from 60 fps up to 120 fps from the F55 camera*. For shooting at higher frame rates, the recorder captures 2K RAW at up to 240 fps from the F55 and F5, for playback with 10x super slow motion.** Note that the 4K RAW 120 fps recording only available for F55. And also the AXS-R7 Portable Memory Recorder is not compatible with the HXR-IFR5 interface unit. Another interesting camera development was the NEW PXW-Z450 an XDCAM Camcorder with a wide range of recording options including 4K QFHD (3840x2160) at 50p/59.94p, as well as a variety of HD formats including XAVC Intra, XAVC Long GOP, MPEG HD 422 and MPEG HD 420. Thanks to a specially-developed 4K 2/3-type Exmor R CMOS sensor, the PXW-Z450 is ideal for a wide variety of 4K operations, allowing you to use a wide range of commercially available B4 mount lenses without having to use an adapter. It also has great networking features such as built-in wireless module, embedded RJ-45 Ethernet 100B-T connector and Near Field Communication (NFC) function for easy Wireless LAN setup and operation via a mobile or tablet with Sony’s Content Browser Mobile™ application. There was also some great discussion on the 2nd generation of their Optical Disc Archive solution and a release of generation 2 products including a stand alone disk archive drive unit and new 3.3TB write once optical discs. Sony has a long white paper on their generation 2 ODA solution which is a lengthy read, but if your're interested, you can find it on their website here
A surprise is not that Ross Video just keep innovating, but how great to see them hit the ground at NAB with a camera offering. If you missed our social media posts about it yesterday, Ross Video have released the Acid Cam purpose built for Studio production. It integrates perfectly with their robotics systems such as the Furio Remote Control system in Videocraft's rental fleet (you would have seen it on the Arias Red carpet). There are two models in the range - the ACID H200 is a full HD 1080P, 3 imager camera that utilizes the very latest 2/3” UAIT CMOS sensors that provide unrivaled performance of the very highest quality. Sensitivity, Signal to Noise and overall picture resolution are unmatched by any competitor with its three 2.6 Mega Pixel image sensors and standard 2/3” B4 lens mount. For moderate budgets and less critical applications, there is the ACID Z50. This is an excellent three CCD sensor 1080i/720P HD camera. This camera is also equipped with the UltraChromeHR output to provide a cost effective solution for awesome keying when combined with the Ross UltrachromeHR chroma keyer. Its lightweight, yet rugged construction also makes it the perfect companion for the Ross Robotic Furio Pan/Tilt heads for legislative bodies, House of Worship, educational, and corporate communication systems. For more information check out the Ross Video webpage
An interesting one for Post-Production was the announcement of Avid NEXIS. Avid NEXIS is the world’s first and only software-defined storage platform, enabling fully virtualized storage for all media environments. What does that translate to for you? The NEXIS intelligent software system does some incredibly powerful things like offer a real-time scalable set of definable/resizable workspaces and a solid protection scheme that can cover you for up to 5 drive failures. Intelligent also means it is a media aware next-generation file system with pre-integrated hardware, which means it’s purpose built and tested to work as a cohesive system (unlike generic storage and third party software). The bottom line is that NEXIS delivers unrivaled flexibility, scalability, control, and extensibility not only to the Avid MediaCentral™ Platform, but also key workflow enabling third-party media applications like Adobe Premiere and Final Cut Pro X, so you can meet any production challenge. From the smallest production teams to the largest media enterprises, NEXIS is the only storage platform with the flexibility to easily scale and grow with you at every stage of your business. For more information check out the Avid Blog page about NEXIS.
Miller Tripods announced a new Arrow X Series of fluid heads - key feature is the 16 Counterbalance PLUS settings so you can add in half settings and are able to rig or re-rig your setup as required. Watch the launch video which covers most of the main points or read their press release for more details. There are three new models in the Arrow X Series - X3, X5 and X7
As always, there was lots to say from our friends at Blackmagic Design in press releases. They also released a 50 minute video overview of all their announcements on their site and you can view it here - yes, there are more than a dozen and we found these ones were certainly interesting. First up was the new Blackmagic URSA Studio Viewfinder, a high resolution 7” studio viewfinder with variable tension mounting points, tally, external controls. For those of you who have already purchased an URSA Mini, then you will be excited by the announcement of the FREE OS providing URSA Mini with a new user interface and heads up display, which dramatically reduces the number of menus and sub-menus needed to find specific settings and commands. You can now quickly change settings such as ISO, white balance, shutter angle, iris, frame rate, frame guides and more without ever having to navigate through any menus. There are now custom white balance and white balance presets, along with tint control settings. Customers also get more accurate shutter angle selection, including a large easy to use on screen keyboard for easy entry of settings. When entering the shutter angle, the new URSA Mini camera OS will even offer smart flicker free shutter angle suggestions to assist the camera operator. For recording and monitoring you could also take a look at the Blackmagic Video Assist 4K features two built in high speed UHS-II recorders that work with the latest high performance SD cards, making them fast enough to record Ultra HD video up to 2160p30 on widely available, inexpensive SD cards. Files are saved as broadcast quality 10-bit 4:2:2 video in either ProRes or DNxHD formats, making them compatible with all popular editing software, so you can start editing immediately without having to transcode or convert files. Recording can be triggered to start and stop using LANC or over HDMI or SDI from the camera. With two built in recorders, customers get non-stop recording because when one card is full it automatically continues onto the next. Not sure if Blackmagic are going for best pocket-sized product awards - they introduced the Blackmagic Micro Converter SDI to HDMI and Blackmagic Micro Converter HDMI to SDI, two new super small, pocket size broadcast quality video converters. This converts signals from professional broadcast equipment such as cameras, decks, switchers and routers into HDMI so customers can monitor video using big screen televisions and projectors. The Micro Convertors are powered via the same micro USB connection that’s used on smartphones so customers can use the included DC plug pack, any USB device, or even a smartphone charger to power the converters. If multiple inputs and monitoring are your thing, then check out the Blackmagic MultiView 4, a new multi viewer that lets customers monitor 4 completely independent SDI video sources on a single display. Customers can monitor any combination of SD, HD and Ultra HD formats and frame rates all at the same time. Blackmagic MultiView 4 can output to regular HD monitors, however, when customers plug in an Ultra HD display, they will get four times the resolution of a simple HD only multi viewer. Connecting and controlling formats is hard work, so why not try the latest product announcement from Blackmagic Design featuring the latest 40Gb/s Thunderbolt 3 technology. UltraStudio 4K Extreme 3 has a wide range of digital and analogue connections and is designed to work with virtually all formats ranging from SD and HD all the way up to Ultra HD and digital cinema. Thunderbolt 3 performance allows customers to work with the highest quality 12-bit RGB and highest frame rate video, including stereoscopic 3D and DCI 4K, making it perfect for high end feature film, television and commercial work. UltraStudio 4K Extreme features a hardware codec that can encode in real time into the new H.265 format. Well, with the Shogun and Ninja Flame products hitting our inboxes and showrooms only weeks ago, here we are again with a new fire burning in our pockets for latest release from Atomos - the Shogun Inferno is the combination of the most advanced monitor technologies – 1500nit/10bit/HDR, the latest recording capability – 4Kp60 over Quad-SDI, along with playback and editing functionality that encourages on set collaboration. Shogun Inferno makes mastering a high resolution, high frame rate, high dynamic range workflow available to all filmmakers. Read more on the Atomos Website.
Fujifilm Announces Fujinon Cabrio XK6X20 Zoom Lens
FUJIFILM has announced that it will release the FUJINON XK6x20 as a new addition to its lineup of 4K-compatible digital cinema camera Cabrio zoom lenses in late June. Equipped with a PL mount*2, the most common format for cinema cameras, the XK6x20 is a standard zoom lens that delivers T3.5*1 brightness for the entire zoom range from 20mm to 120mm. The XK6x20 will be showcased for the first time at NAB 2016 to be held in Las Vegas at the LVCC from April 18 to 21, 2016. Designed for the video production and PL cine markets, this 20-120mm Cabrio features industry-proven Cabrio flexibility - at an affordable price. It is also equipped with a unique detachable servo drive unit, making it suitable for use as an ENG-style or standard PL lens. The 20-120mm Cabrio is also fitted with a nine-blade iris, to capture the most natural looking imagery possible. It comes equipped with all the lens data outputs that are required by today’s cine-style shooters. LDS and /i Tech metadata compatibility are very useful when users need to record the position information of zoom, iris, and focus for computer animation and similar postproduction operations. The digital servo on this new lens has 16-bit encoding, so operators can be assured that the lens data outputs are extremely accurate. The 20-120mm Cabrio XK can be controlled using cinema industry standard wireless controllers, as well as existing FUJINON wired units. Meanwhile, the zoom’s barrel markings are luminous for visibility in dark shooting situations - a nice-to-have touch that reflects the company’s deep understanding of real-life cinema shooting conditions. In recent years, the need for employing visual content that utilise mild bokeh created with high image quality and shallow depth-of-field lenses that are unique to cinema cameras has increased for shooting various scenes for commercials, concerts, documentaries and dramas. Fujifilm released FUJINON Cine Lenses compatible with digital cinema cameras in 2002. Since then, it has provided high-resolution, high-quality lenses for digital cinema camera customers in various production sites in the cinema and broadcasting industries. The XK6x20 digital cinema camera zoom lens offers high optical performance compatible with 4K cameras and covers a wide focal length range from 20mm to 120mm. It also realises T3.5 brightness throughout the entire zoom range. There is no T drop*3 and it offers comfortable operation enabling various scenes to be shot with this single lens. It also features 0.8mm gear pitch*4 for compatibility with standard cine accessories.
Sony introduces the new 4K compact Super35 PXW-FS5 professional camcorder
Providing ultimate handheld shooting and complete creative control to a wider audience. Enabling professionals to shoot in any style, at any angle, anywhere Sony has announced the PXW-FS5, the latest addition to its rugged range of professional camcorders that combine flexible shooting with superior creative features. The versatile “grab and shoot” style PXW-FS5 enables unsurpassed on-the-go shooting in the most demanding of conditions. Complementing the successful PXW-FS7, this compact camcorder delivers high quality imagery suitable for a range of professional applications, from event videography to corporate and online video production. The PXW-FS5 is ergonomically designed with the user in mind - the light 0.8kg body has excellent weight balance ensuring reliability and comfortable all-day handheld shooting, for almost any location, even airborne mounted on a drone. Ease of use for a variety of shooting applications is possible with the one-touch rotatable grip - all of the key controls are at the user's fingertips allowing for ultimate shooting flexibility and fast switch-over between low or high angle shooting. In response to user demand for more ergonomic flexibility, the 3.5-inch type LCD panel can be attached to different positions on the handle or the compact camera body, further supporting easy handheld operation and offering customisable shooting. On-board 4K and HD XAVC recording combined with a Super35 Exmor™ CMOS sensor incorporating 11.6 million pixels and 8.3 million effective pixels allow capture of detail and image texture that even HD sensors cannot see. The high sensitivity and large size of the sensor delivers background defocus, increased low-light sensitivity and lower image noise coupled with stunning picture quality. High quality imagery is further ensured by High Frame Rate cache recording at 10-bit 4:2:2 in Full HD with an incredibly high frame rate of up to 240fps, in 8 second bursts, making 10x Super Slow Motion possible without sacrificing bit depth or loss of image quality. The PXW-FS5 is the world’s first* Super35mm camcorder to feature built-in electronic variable ND filters, further supporting the use of shallow depth of field with the large-format sensor and enabling flexible exposure control, encouraging the user to reach their full creative potential. Professionals can push their work to the next level with a high-end cinematic look to footage, coupled with the mobility of the camcorder. Integrating easily with other camera lenses, the α Mount System offers unsurpassed compatibility with both Sony and third-party lenses. The PXW-FS5’s E-mount can take virtually any lens – from Sony’s E-mount and A-mount lenses to a whole world of other SLR lenses via adaptors, ensuring the camcorder can be used in many shooting environments. The PXW-FS5 is available body only, or as the PXW-FS5K kit model which includes a compact 18-105mm F4 E-mount power zoom lens (SELP18105G), enabling single-handed zoom operation and allowing ease of framing, even in difficult shooting locations. The camcorder offers enhanced interfaces include 3G-SDI, HDMI output and SD dual card slots for recording. Equipped with Wi-Fi and a wired LAN terminal, the PXW-FS5 features enhanced network functions such as file transfer and streaming transmission. Furthermore, a future firmware update will provide RAW output. “At last year’s IBC we launched the PXW-FS7, which changed the way many television programmes, documentaries and film productions could be made. With that in mind and building on the great success of the PXW-FS7, we’re introducing a lighter more compact camcorder, the PXW-FS5,” said Nick Buchner, Senior Product Manager for Content Creation with Sony Australia and New Zealand. “The PXW-FS5 presents unrivalled flexibility coupled with complete creative control, equipping professionals with all the tools needed to exceed any brief. It stands apart in the current market as a comfortable handheld, lightweight camera, which at the same time delivers high quality imagery for content creation spanning genres such as corporate shooting, indie production, cinematic wedding videography, online and event videography. Users will have all the practical and creative functionality at their disposal, leaving them without any limits to realise their full potential.” *as a Super35mm camcorder with integrated electronic variable ND filter, based on Sony research. Key features of the PXW-FS5• Flexible handheld shooting with a compact 0.8kg lightweight body The lightweight body with excellent weight balance ensures comfortable handheld shooting as well as an easy fit with a drone or gimbal. The one-touch rotatable grip makes it quick and easy to switch between low or high angle shooting. Shooting parameters can be changed with one hand even during recording thanks to the multi-functional grip. In the same way a power zoom lens can be operated with a single hand. The detachable handle, one-touch rotatable grip and flexible LCD panel support varied shooting styles. • Creative expressive performance, including 4K shooting and 240fps high-speed shooting The camcorder is equipped with an 11.6 million pixel Super35 Exmor™ CMOS Sensor, enabling 4K XAVC long GoP video shooting. It is the world’s first Super35mm camcorder with a built-in electronic variable ND filter, supporting linear control from 1/4ND to 1/128ND and further expanding the creative use of depth of field. 10x times Super Slow Motion capture is possible thanks to the 10-bit 4:2:2 Full HD 240fps High Frame Rate, with no sensor cropping. Low light capabilities and background defocus are heightened by the high sensitivity and large sensor size. On top of this, the 14 stops of exposure latitude deliver strong grayscale rendition without crushing shadows or blowing-out highlight details. • Variety of shooting applications and rich network functions The camcorder is equipped with enhanced interfaces including 3G-SDI, 4K HDMI output, Multi-Interface shoe, dual SD memory card slots, integrated Wi-Fi and wired LAN terminal, supporting various system configurations. The Clear Image Zoom feature allows users to zoom in up to 2x, even with a fixed focal length lens. There is a great collection of videos on the Sony You Tube Camera Channel you can view them by clicking here
Convergent Design makes an Odyssey of announcements for 7Q+ and 7Q models
So what did Videocraft take away from the NAB Show in 2015?
While everyone has their own take on the show depending on what interests them, here is what our very own James Taylor (@VideocraftJames) took from NAB this year. 4K is everywhere now. This was absolutely the case, with pretty much every company having 4K logos on their gear. Obviously 4K has been around for a while now in digital cinema production, but is now a real option to now produce 4K for live television. I may be jaded and cynical, but walking between all of the stands I felt that 4K on big TV’s did not feel as ‘special’ as maybe I would have hoped. But with an exception: the new hope is not more pixels, but High Dynamic Range (HDR), also defined as a new standard, BT.2020.We have had image sensors for quite a while now with fantastic ability to handle dark areas and highlights in a RAW mode for later grading, but very simply it is about choosing what you want to throw away in post. The idea of HDR is that the performance of the imager can be more faithfully produced, and coupled with a wider colour gamut I had found this so much more impressive. The colour reproduction was so much better, and having the ability to see in to dark areas without the bright areas blowing out was a revelation to see on a domestic style screen. I would personally choose HDR images over ultimate resolution, but I suppose we get both. If we all have to go through the upheaval of changing everything to 4K, I feel that the extra pixels really did not add anything to experience if we are still constrained by the current 709 colour space used in HD systems. So, look out for HDR! Using IP infrastructure to replace traditional video cabling. I think that NAB 2015 could be defined as the year where IP infrastructure could be defined as a real thing, and all of the big companies had large amounts of new toys on their stands all vying to be the ‘new standard’, within the SMPTE ratified standards, if that makes sense! Right now, it is very much a product line for the top end of town, and I think that there will be a fair bit of pain and suffering over the next few years as everyone tries to establish their place on the market. I found it interesting that while I always thought that the idea was to be able to use standard (although high end) IT infrastructure, at this time I don’t think that that really is the case. When I look at what has happened in professional audio over the years, many standards have come and gone, and only now are we really starting to see some possibility of audio over IP systems talking together with the AES67 standard. It is absolutely the way of the future, and I am excited about it, but right now I do have total interoperability with my copper (or fibre) HD SDI cable which will go between any brand of equipment, but right now I don’t think I would be able to as easily achieve that on IP. We only have to look at the myriad of file types in post-production workflows now to imagine what our future could look like! The 8K Sideshow. The Japanese, driven by NHK are driving 8K demands, and while it is amazing at the data rates we are seeing, it does feel a very long way off when you live in a country with the bulk of free to air TV is being delivered in heavily compressed SD. It was such a pleasure to watch good-looking HD broadcasts over in the US, and I continued to marvel at what HD should look like, and lament what could have been for HD in Australia. It all feels like something that is being pushed on us so the TV manufacturers can make us buy new TV’s… I think also exactly the same reason why we need 4K! Amazing technology though that when you think in DSLR speak, these cameras are taking a 33 mega pixel still 60 times a second… Sony Optical Disc Archive. I wasn’t really intending to focus on a particular brand, but I suppose it is my opinion and I really liked it for a lot of things we do! We have been using (and will continue to use) LTO tape as our long term archive solution. I won’t go in to the whole reason why we go to tape, but suffice to say that if your archive is on a single hard drive, then it is not an archive! The Sony Optical Disk archive system has matured, and it has had some major new clients over the past year apparently. What we like about it is that we have an archive grade media system with random access, and that is a huge advantage. In conjunction with an archive system, such as Storage DNA, it really makes it possible to use an archive media as a nearline storage system without having to have another pile of hard drives just to park your media away from your really expensive online storage. Extra capacity is as easy as buying more cartridges, and you have media that is more stable than tape. I could go on about it for hours, but I really do see this as the ideal archive system for the needs of the Digital Cinema and TV industry. We will be pursuing this further once we get back to Australia, so stay tuned! They were the main things that I took from NAB this year, and I know that there were lots of other things out there that I didn’t even get time to look at! Enjoy!
Atomos go Bare Bones and Big at NAB with a 4K Theatre Dome, and lots of upgrades for Shogun
Atomos go big in Las Vegas with a 4K Theatre Dome A 4K Theatre Dome housing a mammoth Sony 4K projector, premium AV kit and comfortable theatre seating within a 45ft diameter inflatable dome has been the centre of attention in Central Hall, especially with free popcorn on entry. The entire 4K production is of course be driven by the Atomos 4K Shogun ... although the dome is a sight to be seen so are their Shogun announcements for both hard and firmware upgrades for both new and existing Shogun users. ‘Bare Bones’ comes to the entire Atomos Monitor Record LineThe Atomos Shogun has contributed to making 4K affordable, manageable and accessible to more filmmakers all while making production simpler and more affordable. A new variant of the Shogun called Shogun ‘Bare Bones’ will soon be available at an even cheaper price point of USD$1695 that removes all accessories except an SSD media case, soft carry case and AC power supply The complete suite of accessories will also be available for USD$395.This allows customers customers to utilise legacy Atomos accessories they already own or decide what makes sense for their first and second 4K camera rig. The “Bare Bones” option has also been applied to the full range of Atomos Monitor/Recorders. Ninja 2 at USD$395 is a steal, it is our original flagship product and our most successful, Ninja Blade and Samurai blade have the 5” SuperAtom IPS 325PPI monitor, calibration, WFM, Apple ProRes and Avid DNxHD and are bare bones for USD$795. Atomos expect Atomos Shogun Bare Bones to be available from resellers in May 2015. Shogun has 7 new hardware features available over the coming months which are free to both new and existing registered users. Shogun users will receive 7 significant hardware enhancements, in addition to the 4 OS feature improvements, all of which have been announced at NAB 2015. Available via free download over the coming months, Shogun users will gain the following: Anamorphic de-squeeze 2x, 1.5x and 1.3x. With a free firmware update due at the end of May 2015, Shogun users will be able to de-squeeze monitored anamorphic content to their true 2.39:1 ratio. In addition to 2.39:1 anamorphic, Shogun will also de-squeeze the Panasonic 8:3 format. These translate into commonly used terms of supporting 2x 1.5x 1.3x anamorphic lenses. RAW recording to ProRes, DNxHR and Cinema DNG Some cameras on the market only output their 4K content in RAW data format over SDI, these include Sony FS700, FS7, Canon C300MkII and C500). On the post production side, some people request to keep the RAW format for grading while others would prefer to encode to a more edit friendly format like ProRes or DNxHR with 3D LUT’s applied. The Shogun is flexible with the ability to take the RAW data from the camera and record direct to RAW (wrapped as Cinema DNG) or to edit friendly Apple ProRes or Avid DNxHR codecs in 4K, UHD, 2K or HD. Expanded RAW compatibility to include Sony, Canon, Arri and AJA Available for free with the Shogun aand recordable to reliable off the shelf SSD from brands like Sandisk, Transcend, Intel etc. With RAW options available for Sony FS series, Canon C500, Arri Alexa and AJA CION. Sony FS RAW will be available from mid June, while Canon C500/ Arri Alexa / AJA CION RAW will be available from the end of June 2015. 3D LUTs on output and in recording Another free update made recently for Shogun users was the addition of 3D LUTs, covering both standard LUTs (C-Log, S-Log 2/3, V-LUT) as well as user defined LUTs in the standard “.cube” format. Up to 8 can be stored on the Shogun which can be accessed via a simple monitor button at the bottom right of screen. LUTs on the output available via free firmware update end May Cinema 4K and 2K DCI support Shogun will be updated to accept and record Cinema 4K and 2K DCI (4096 x 2160p) in addition to the 4K UHD and HD it already is capable of receiving (3840 x 2160p). Available via free update mid June 2015. Uncompressed 4:2:2 HD v210 support A small percentage of customers have requested uncompressed support in the Shogun, especially for green screen and specific post-production tasks. We are happy to offer this group their request free of charge. Available via free firmware update end June. Genlock The Genlock connection on the back of the Shogun will be activated via free firmware end of May 2015 to allow synchronous playback across multiple video devices. Placing the Shogun as the ultimate portable 4K play-out deck for any broadcaster or event production house. Atomos announce a schedule of OS changes that bring with them exciting new features In the space of only 4 months, more than 15,000 Shoguns have rolled off the production line. At NAB 2015, Atomos have announced even more features for new and existing Shogun users, releasing details of upcoming enhancements for AtomOS6. Available via free download over the coming months, Shogun users will gain the following: Custom meta data tagging Now users can create their own custom meta data tags, storing up to “10” tags on the Shogun which are completely customisable. Imagine the ability to mark “Directors pick”, “Out takes”, “Over exposed”, “Audio Pop” and more, all the time slicing through the time taken for the main edit in post production. Pre-roll Recording Shogun will continually buffer content internally allowing the user to record the previous 8s of HD recording or 2s of 4K the moment you hit the record button. Time lapse video By allowing both the duration of recording in number of frames or length of time and the interval be altered depending on the director’s intent and even multi stage recording is possible, altering the time and duration throughout the period of the shoot. Essentially we have made time lapse keyframeable and flexible in the video arena. Playlist generation The new playlist function allows users to not only tag sections within a clip for play-out but also tag entire clips and have them all replayed as a playlist. Convenient when pulling together the best takes of the day or in commercial situations where 4K play-back for immediate storyline review is needed. Shogun is now the world’s first fully portable play-out server. Atomos Power Station. Delivering continuous power for up to 5 devices as well as fast battery charging in a compact design.In a footprint not much larger than 2 batteries, Atomos Power Station delivers power for up to 5 devices using our patent pending Continuous Power dual battery system, allowing users to hot swap batteries on the fly without interrupting power to their devices. At its core, Power Station consists of 2 batteries mounted side by side that operate together using a continuous circular power system. When one battery gets low it can be removed and charged while the system switches across to the second battery uninterrupted. This patented design by Atomos is used to power up to 3 DC streams (for cameras, monitors, recorders or lighting) as well as 2 USB products such as smartphones or tablets. With a DC input as well, it doubles as a super-fast charger for your batteries – up to 3 times the rate of conventional chargers. Connections and features at a glance: • 2 DC out and included splitter cable to give connection for up to 3 DC devices. • 2 USB terminals to power 1A and 2A USB devices for fast charging of USB cameras or to power any USB device. • DC input with fast charging capability to charge the connected batteries and provide continual AC power for connected devices. • Independent left and right LED front display to give a quick 5 step visual guide on the power remaining for each battery from 100% down to 10%. • Dummy batteries are available to power popular cameras including Sony A7s, Sony FS Series, Panasonic GH4, Nikon D810 and Canon 5DMKIII. • Total power capability up to 5A (DC plus USB), with maximum 3A for USB connections.
12G SDI is the big news from Blackmagic at NAB 2015
Sony unveils HDC-4300 World’s First 4K System Camera with Three 4K Image Sensors
Sony’s next generation of HDC series camera technology provides the ability to use the high magnification wide zoom range lenses currently employed by HD 2/3-inch systems while maintaining an adequate depth of field to properly show all of the action in live event broadcasting. The new HDC-4300 is the world’s first camera to use three 2/3-inch 4K image sensors¹. It supports the same B4-mount lenses as well as the same control surfaces as Sony’s industry leading HDC-2000 series cameras. The existing HDLA-1500 series, control and shading systems, viewfinders and master set-up units are all interchangeable between the HD and 4K systems. Directors and operators can keep their approach to live events — including camera angles, zoom ranges and iris settings – while using familiar camera technology.“This camera provides 4K capabilities and a workflow that content producers are instantly familiar and comfortable with,” said Rob Willox, marketing manager for content creation systems, Sony’s Professional Solutions Americas. “We’ve developed an approach that allows the large existing HDC series user base to employ 4K advantages such as 8x high frame rate and 4K cut-out and zoom while using a familiar infrastructure and signal path.” The new HDC-4300 is capable of 4K/HD operation, with 2x, 3x Super Slow Motion as standard, and higher speeds up to 8x available, to produce high-quality replays and specialty program effects. The camera uses ultra-high-precision alignment technology to realize three 4K sensor on a new prism. This allows the support of the next-generation ITU-R BT.2020 broadcast standard’s widened color space for future-proof masters or post production options for today’s productions, shown on tomorrow’s 4K services. Direct attachment of B4 HD lenses Standard large-format B4-mount lenses mount directly onto the HDC‑4300. This gives broadcasters the flexibility needed for live sports broadcasts: 4K capabilities while maintaining their customary HD-lens operating styles. SZC-4001 Software Sony’s SZC-4001 software package (sold separately) allows broadcasters to take advantage of 4K capabilities. Super Slow Motion (up to 8x) at HD Resolution The SZC-4002 software package (sold separately) enables the system to shoot full HD (1920 x 1080) at frame rates up to 479.52/400 fps, as well as 59.94/50, 119.88/100, and 179.82/150 fps. Users can save these high-frame-rate shots to Sony’s PWS-4400 multiport 4K/HD Live Server. HD/4K Live Production for Sports The HDC-4300 accepts the same configurations as existing 4K live systems. A BPU-4000 baseband processor unit receives the camera signals via SMPTE fiber and connects to an HDCU-2000 or 2500 camera control unit. This provides power and full intercom, tally, and return capabilities. Users can seamlessly blend an HDC-4300-based system with existing HDC Series camera systems. The HD signals from the HDC Series cameras and from the new camera system can be adjusted to match colorimetry. The addition of other 4K products, such as the PWS-4400 multi-port 4K/HD Live server, a multi-format switcher capable of real-time 4K signal processing based on the MVS-8000X, and Sony’s new BVM-X300 4K OLED or PMW-X300 4K LCD monitors create an end-to-end 4K live production solution. HDC-4300 – additional features:
- HD cut-outs – two full HD images to be cut out from the 4K picture in real-time including a selectable zoom and perspective mode.
- Many of the Picture adjustment functions of HDC Series cameras are supported by the HDC-4300 system
- Dynamic focus (4K focus-assist function) – a focus point can be displayed on the viewfinder with a marker in 4K mode for easy focusing.
- Auto lens aberration compensation 2 (ALAC2) function
- Color reproduction adjustment functions
- Gamma table selection
- User gamma function
- Natural skin-tone detail function
- Knee saturation function
- Low-key saturation function
Fujinon launches 4K Zooms for 2/3-Inch Broadcast Applications at NAB 2015
Canon premieres the XC10 – Compact 4K video and stills camera
Avid Releases New Version of Media Composer Bringing Resolution Independence to Film and Television Production
Avid® announces the availability of the latest version of Avid Media Composer® | Software, which allows video professionals to acquire, manage, edit, and deliver native 4K and other high-res media faster and more efficiently than ever. Leveraging the new Avid Resolution Independence architecture and Avid DNxHR™ encoding, Media Composer offers the most complete and flexible end-to-end workflow for file-based editing of any resolution. This new release helps content creators deliver higher quality content in more collaborative, powerful, and efficient ways – a key part of Avid Everywhere™. Leveraging the Avid MediaCentral Platform, Media Composer is part of the Avid Artist Suite of industry-standard creative tools. Avid Resolution Independence provides a holistic, platform-centric approach that puts no limits to the resolutions customers can capture, edit, and output. Media professionals can work with the broadest variety of media in every resolution – SD, HD, 4K and beyond – using their existing infrastructure. Media Composer is the first Avid product to support Resolution Independence, with support for more products and solutions across the MediaCentral Platform coming soon. At the center of the Avid Resolution Independence architecture is Avid DNxHR, a new extensible media codec that makes it possible to edit and deliver high-res content within HD-capable infrastructures. Offering greater beauty without the bandwidth, DNxHR scales from lightweight proxies to mastering-quality high-resolution media. Other new capabilities in the latest version of Media Composer include enhanced color management, high frame rate support, high-efficiency proxy workflows, and timesaving background rendering of high-resolution media. Media Composer | Software gives editors at post production facilities, broadcasters, production companies and more, the tools, workflows, and options needed for professional film, television, video, and news creation. The new version of Media Composer | Software is available now through Videocraft so please call your local Post Production Specialist Melbourne (03) 9888 8511 Sydney (02) 9436 3050