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04.24.2002
Originally featured on BroadcastEngineering.com
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Monday, April 8, 2002





Panasonic expands 24p commitment



Las Vegas, NV - At its NAB press conference on Sunday, Panasonic unveiled a broad commitment to 24fps progressive, commonly known as 24p, as an acquisition option in its camcorders.

Stuart English, vice president of marketing for Panasonic, said the company planned to introduce the film-style 24p as well as standard NTSC, 60 fields per second interlaced, “at every price point and every niche in the market.”

As part of that commitment to “24p everywhere,” the company had announced in February in a pre-NAB press conference the new AG-DVX100 miniDV camcorder. With three 1/3” 410,000-pixel CCDs, the camera records both 60i and 24p. The AG-DVX100, to be released in is the industry’s first miniDV format camcorder to record digital video at 24fps, according to Panasonic. On Sunday, the company announced that Apple will support the camera’s 24p output in a future version of Final Cut Pro.

Closer to Panasonic’s traditional broadcast line, the AJ-SDX900 camcorder was also announced. With three 2/3” chips, it captures in DVCPRO50 in both 60i and 24p and is switchable between 4:3 and 16:9 aspect ratios.

Panasonic also reiterated improvements to its popular AJ-HDC27 Varicam and unveiled the AK-HC931, a new studio DTV camera with variable frame rates.

The company also announced a solution for editing all this variable frame rate material. The AJ-FRC27 frame rate converter integrates “undercranked” and “overcranked” footage and also converts 720p to 1080/24p, 1080/60i, and 1080/50i. It can serve as a realtime device field use, allowing immediate viewing of “undercranked” and “overcranked” material.

Also, in further collaboration with Apple, Panasonic announced plans to add FireWire to upcoming DVCPRO50 and DVCPRO HD tape decks. This will make them the world’s first VTRs to support full ITU-601 digital 4:2:2 video at 50Mbps and 100Mbps data rates over IEEE 1394.



Optibase introduces VideoPump HD 811

Optibase unveiled VideoPump HD 811, the addition to the company's family of Serial Digital Video to PCI Interfaces that capture and play back uncompressed High Definition and Standard Definition video.

The VideoPump family of products enables digital video production and digital broadcasting companies to capture, manipulate and transmit uncompressed broadcast-quality serial digital video; both Standard Definition and High Definition, in real-time. These capabilities facilitate video processing and special effects production for applications such as broadcast quality overlay and video processing; High Definition and Standard Definition content creation; and streaming media server encoding and uploading. Original equipment manufacturer (OEM) customers can easily integrate VideoPump platforms at the system level with customer applications such as video servers for the broadcast market and interactive TV infrastructure platforms.

The VideoPump HD 811 is a high definition interface platform that offers support for both embedded audio conforming to SMPTE 272M as well as AES/EBU audio, which can be acquired, de-multiplexed from the input serial digital signal and stored on the host computer as well as played back synchronized with the video stream.

VideoPump HD systems will also be available configured with the VideoPump HD 811 in a server class industry standard hosting PC with scaleable storage arrays as well as capture and playback software to ensure reliable operation at the High Definition data rates.



Digital Voodoo unleashes its HD Fury

Uncompressed 10 Bit HD SDI Capture and Playback Card With 1 Built In HD SDI Input, 1 HD SDI Output, 8 channels of AES/EBU and simultaneous SD SDI downconversion are just a few features of Digital Voodoo's new product, the HD Fury.

The high definition capture and playback card featuring 1 HD SDI Input, 1 HD SDI Output and 8 channels of AES/EBU Digital Audio and simultaneous SD SDI downconversion. HD Fury offers the highest quality video input and output for the Macintosh.

The HD Fury is compatible with all Macintosh High Definition design and editing applications such as Final Cut Pro 3. Users can work with uncompressed 10-bit 4:2:2 video directly in YUV colorspace.

Key Features of the HD Fury include:

  • Fully digital SMPTE 292/296 10 bit SDI Input and Output

  • Real-time uncompressed 10 bit QuickTime playback without any kind of video compression

  • Can be selected to operate in 1080i and 1080 PsF television systems

  • Future support for 720p

  • Functions as a second Mac monitor when not in use for real-time uncompressed playback

  • Simultaneous SD SDI downconversion

  • Programmable interface for future updates

  • 8 Channels of AES/EBU Digital audio 48khz to 96khz through "The Junction" audio breakout box

  • Built-in safe area generator helps when using applications that don't include this function

  • Video genlock, which allows HD Fury to be locked to station reference



  • Telecast Fiber releases the Trithon multiplexer

    Telecast Fiber Systems released its Trithon multiplexer optimized for high-capacity SDI video and digital audio (AES/EBU) signal transport. The compact, 1-RU Trithon conserves valuable fiber strands by combining more signals on each fiber -- three SDI, nine AES/EBU audio, and 12 analog audio channels on a single optical wavelength.

    The Trithon also implements coarse wavelength division multiplexing (CWDM) for an eightfold boost in fiber capacity, enabling transport of signals at full, uncompressed rates.

    The Trithon multiplexer is ideal for a wide range of applications, including studio-transmitter links, sports and field production, Telco last-mile and local-loop installations, campus and metropolitan applications, and long-distance interfacility and CATV installations.

    Telecast's electrical and optical CWDM multiplexing provides a cost-efficient way to transmit up to 24 SDI video, 72 AES/EBU audio, and 96 analog audio signals on one single-mode fiber. The new multiplexer is capable of transmitting three asynchronous, independent, digital video channels without the need to pre-sync the SDI inputs.

    The Trithon can receive up to nine non-synchronous AES/EBU signals at their own sampling rates in the "free run" mode, and allows signals to be re-clocked to match the ninth AES output, whether it is a true AES/EBU signal or an external sync. Twelve optional 20-kHz, 24-bit-encoded audio channels provide a signal-to-noise ratio of more than 94dB.

    A front-panel monitor displays signal status at either the transmitter or receiver end, and the switched front-panel BNC can monitor any of the three SDI channels. All audio channels may be monitored via volume-controlled headphone jacks.



    Virage introduces new solution to automate and streamline professional video production

    Virage has announced its VS Production, an integrated software solution that streamlines the video production workflow from content acquisition to distribution. By automating acquisition and providing desktop access to frame-accurate, low-resolution video, VS Production helps broadcasters and other video professionals reduce operating costs, improve programming quality, and speed time to air.

    VS Production centralizes and automates the acquisition of incoming video content, whether from tape, satellite feed or digital transmission. Using the Virage SmartEncode process, content is simultaneously indexed and encoded into frame-accurate MPEG-1 and broadcast-quality MPEG-2.

    VS Production provides browser-based search and review of all available content, including desktop access to frame-accurate MPEG-1. In addition, the software allows any user to assemble and preview frame-accurate playlists right from the desktop. Playlists can then be exported as an edit decision list (EDL) to a variety of popular edit systems. After editing, finished content packages can be added to the system for final review and approval.



    DNF Controlsoffers "Drag and Drop" integration with GVG Profile

    DNF Controls released DNF's Shotkey Assignment Tool, an integrated Windows-based application for loading video clips onto the Shotbox. The tool allows clip names to be dragged from Media Manager onto the DNF Shotbox for instant clip playout.

    The 2044CL Clip Instant Access System from DNF Controls consists of its ST400 controller with Clip Management software and the ST420 Shotbox. The ST400 and Shotbox share a common, non-volatile cue point memory in the ST400. The 10 banks of 30 switches each on the Shotbox provide instant access to 300 Clips.

    DNF's Shotkey Assignment Tool uses Profile's SDK tools for developers to integrate the 2044CL with Media Manager. The resulting application provides a simple "drag and drop" means of sharing data.




    ParkerVision debuts the XSWITCH

    ParkerVision unveiled the X-SWITCH, a routing switcher which provides complete system control and redundancy for the PVTV NEWS™ line of live production automation systems.

    It allows stations to gradually switch to live production automation from traditional live news operations to one show at a time.

    In addition to operating with a PVTV system, the XSWITCH can be used by broadcasters to consolidate all switching and routing requirements in operations that choose to control myriad signal types from a single switch configuration.



    Innovision introduces CAMS MD

    InnoVision Optics introduces the CAMS MD Remote Camera Head -- Movie. Lightweight and compact, the new CAMS MD is designed to be easy to transport and to set up on site. It reduces the need for bulky coaxial cables: CAMS MD requires only a standard telephone type cable for operation.

    Designed for use on jib arms, cranes, or overhead or floor rails, the new CAMS MD achieves digitally precise yet totally fluid camera movements. This robotic system provides complex remote pan, tilt, and tracking shots, and is capable of 360 degree camera rotation.

    Operators can control the master head with a choice of panhandles, handwheels, or joystick, while viewing shots on a video monitor.

    The CAMS MD 15-lb. slave head is compatible with most portable cameras. A unique multi-camera drive feature allows for several cameras to be linked and operated simultaneously. Camera movements can be stored and repeated.



    Digital Rapids announces StreamStation

    Digital Rapids announces StreamStation a streaming media encoding and batch encoding workstation. The Digital Rapids StreamStation is an IBM IntelliStation equipped with dual Intel Xeon chips running at 2.2Ghz, and Digital Rapids dual channel Stream video capture and processing hardware.

    The Digital Rapids StreamStation offers the same encoding capabilities as the StreamZ and StreamForge server products.

    StreamStation Hardware Features:

    Video

    • Dual Xeon running at 2.2Ghz

    • Dual Channel video capture and processing

    • Live Graphic Overlay

    • Motion adaptive de-interlacing

    • 3D motion adaptive video noise reduction

    • 2D noise reduction (spatial)

    • Video Scaling from postage stamp through 1024x768 Aspect Ratio control, cropping, Proc-amp control

    • SDI, DV, Component (Y, Cr, Cb), S-Video (Y/C), and composite inputs

    • Audio



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