Grass Valley Introduces New Products for NAB2006

January 27, 2006
Grass Valley this week announced several new products it will show at NAB2006, including a new wireless transmission system for HD cameras, as well as several new models of its Kayak switcher product line.

A new HD version of the Grass Valley SD wireless camera system will be shown at NAB2006. The system docks to the LDK 4000 and 6000, and uses 802.16 physical layer for transmission, with JPEG2000 compression. Coverage area is around 300 meters but an optional booster can extend the coverage area for up to 1 km.

Grass Valley is also introducing seven new configurations for its Kayak line of switchers, bringing the total number of Kayak switchers to 16. The new lower-cost switchers operate at SD mode but can be upgraded to full HD/SD mode. A new larger control panel for Kayak features three M/E banks and 32 crosspoints per row and are available in either white key or color key versions. A new six-channel RAM recorder feature offers more internal HD storage than any other switcher on the market, according to Grass Valley.

A new "MatchDef" feature for Kayak HD/SD switchers eliminates the use of a separate keyer to upscale, downscale or cross-scale different video formats. It can be used in both SD and HD mode.

"Once you take a source in a different format and convert it inside Kayak with one scaler, it can be used in any number of places at the same time, as a key source in more than one M/E, a background source, an auxbus source or even as a record source," said Mark Narveson, director of product marketing for live production systems for Grass Valley said. "It only takes one scaler, no keyers or M/E to do that conversion."

Other products being introduced at NAB2006 include a new ViBE MPEG-4 encoder, Netprocessor MPEG multiplexer and camera viewfinder with improved ergonomic design.

Grass Valley will also showcase products from its Canopus and Thales Broadcast and Multimedia acquisitions. Canopus, in particular, helps round out the company's editing suite, bringing a true craft editor system to the Grass Valley line of editing systems and enhancing its position in the expanding ProAV market, according to company executives.

The Thales acquisition "links together" several important divisions within Thomson to allow the company to offer a complete end to end system for IPTV operators.

The integration of Thales products with Thomson "really puts us at the center of the IPTV market," said Jeff Rosica, vice president, Worldwide Strategic Marketing and Business Development, Thomson Broadcast and Media Solutions.

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