TriStar Products in Fairfield, NJ, the billion-dollar purveyor of iconic brands like Ab Slide, Ab Roller, Lateral Thigh Trainer, Power Cooker and Jack LaLanne's Power Juicer, recently completed construction of a 66,000sq ft production studio equipped with four Panasonic AJ-HDX900 multiformat DVCPRO HD camcorders.
TriStar is using the cameras to shoot 30-minute infomercials and two-minute spots promoting its current line of fitness, cooking, sports and general interest products. It also uses the HDX900s in the field to shoot testimonials and B-roll.
The studio encompasses 12 pre-built, pre-lit sets simulating kitchens, bathrooms, fitness rooms, bedrooms and a children's playroom, in addition to a complete green screen setup.
Previously, TriStar Products shot exclusively with Panasonic's AJ-SDX900 DVCPRO50 Cinema. An advanced HD version of the SDX900, the new HDX900 includes the DVCPRO HD codec and multiformat recording that captures 100Mb/s HD images in any of 11 video formats.
Each of TriStar's HDX900 cameras is equipped with a Fujinon XA17x7.6 BERM HD lens and a Panasonic BT-LH900A 8.4in multiformat HD production monitor. Three of the HDX900s are placed on Sachtler pedestals in the studio, and the fourth is hung on a jimmy jib.
TriStar also purchased a Panasonic 50in professional plasma that is hooked to a Miranda Technologies board in the control room for split-screen monitoring, as well as two AJ-HD1400 DVCPRO HD VTRs used for editing.
Typically, each 30-minute infomercial entails approximately 50 hours of shooting. The shoot is switched live and recorded onto the compact AJ-HD1400 deck, and then downconverted and digitized into the Avid for editing. Once the Avids are upgraded later this year, TriStar will edit in HD.
For more information, visit www.tristarproductions.com and www.panasonic.com/broadcast.