Originally featured on BroadcastEngineering.com
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Thursday, April 11, 2002

ISIS debuts new routing switchers

The ISIS-Group introduced a new range of modular, compact presentation and live event routing switchers at NAB2002.

The INNOVATION by ISIS series accommodates the RGBHV signal format through native HD15 connector I/O matrix sizes ranging from 8x8, 16x16 and 32x32. With its modular construction, users can expect complete configuration and an upgrade path capable of meeting future system requirements, including the addition of analog or digital levels for audio switching.

The INNOVATION by ISIS includes a comprehensive selection of control panel options and accessories. Control panels are operable locally at the routing switcher frame or remotely with the ISIS control panel cradle assembly.

Only a single cable is routed to each remote control panel because of ISIS'10 base-2 Ethernet control system design. The product also features the availability of an RS232 control port allowing systems integrators and users to interface other remote control architectures.

Snell & Wilcox displays high-end standard conversion features of Alchemist Platinum

Snell & Wilcox displayed Alchemist Platinum, the next generation of the Ph.C standards converter at its NAB2002 booth.

Alchemist Platinum uses Ph.C motion compensation technology. It has been built as a platform to accommodate future upgrades and options. Two of these options, HD upconversion and video-to-film processing, are available now.

Alchemist Platinum offers 12-bit processing, improved resolution, and improvement in picture fidelity. It also enables optional high quality upconversion along with standards (frame-rate) conversion.

TANDBERG Television launches iTTV Concept for xDSL and FTTH broadband networks

TANDBERG Television launched its iTTV Concept range of packaged trial and commercial deployment systems for broadband xDSL and FTTH (Fiber to the Home) operators.

The company is launching two new systems that bring together management and delivery solutions developed by TANDBERG Television:

  • iTTV Delivery Platform: a carrier class system for xDSL and FTTH networks, which supports the delivery of television and video on demand services over both IP and ATM.
  • iTTV Pilot: a ‘broadband in a box’ fully functioning head-end solution for xDSL and FTTH trials that includes all the components required to launch a technical TVoIP trial.

Wacom introduces the Cintiq 18sx

Las Vegas, NV - The line between a high-resolution monitor and a pressure-sensitive tablet all but disappeared with the introduction at NAB2002 of the Cintiq 18sx interactive pen display from Wacom.

The stunning display features an 18.1-inch diagonal LCD screen with 24-bit, 1280-by-1024 resolution and can be used as a traditional monitor for animation and video applications. In fact, Alias/Wavefront used the display in a meeting room at NAB during demonstrations of Maya for the press. But although the Cintiq looks for all the world like just another LCD monitor, it’s also a fully functional graphics tablet. Using a cordless, pressure-sensitive pen, users can draw and manipulate images directly on the screen.

“The Cintiq 18sx provides the ultimate human-machine interface for creative computing, allowing users to interact directly with images, video, and electronic documents faster, more intuitively, and without any confusing hand-eye coordination,” says Michael Marcum, Cintiq product manager.

The Cintiq 18sx will be available in May. It is compatible with Windows-based PCs, Macintosh computers, and SGI and Sun workstations.

Fujifilm unveils new DV131 video cassettes

Fujifilm unveiled a new DV131 video cassettes for the DVCam format. The newest additions to FujiFilm's video product line offer users up to 184 minutes of digital video recording. Other future additions include higher C/N ratio and stability as well as 50 percent lower dropout rate comapred with consumer formats.

Florical Systems launches turnkey commercial insertion automation systems

Las Vegas, NV - Florical Systems unveiled the System LT100 and the System LT200. The small automation system is targeted toward smaller television stations, school systems, cable MSO's or as a backup to the AirBoss system.

The complete commercial insertion solution includes on-air presentation, spot ingest and traffic system schedule import.

The LT200 system combines commercial insertion and program playback for one or two channels. Both systems support all VDCP compatible video servers and can interface with all major television traffic systems for schedule import and reconcilliation from as-run logs.

Radamec Broadcast Systems introduces camera jib arm

Las Vegas, NV - Radamec Broadcast Systems has introduced Robojib, a robotically controlled camera jib arm at NAB2002. Robojib, ideal for News Programs as well as Shopping Networks, adds new dimensions to productions by creating angles that are unachievable with pedestal-mounted cameras.

Robojib provides variable speed “on-air” quality movement and excellent repeatability of all axis, including azimuth and elevation. Robojib can support a pan/tilt head at a ten foot radius and is easily integrated into new and existing Touch Control Systems.

    Jib-Arm Specifications
  • Azimuth Radius 8 ft. 2 in. (2.5 meters)

  • Balance Arm Radius 4 ft. 3 in. (1.3 meters )

  • Azimuth Travel
  • 330 degrees
  • Elevation Travel 1 ft. to 11 ft. 6 in. (0.3m to 3.5 m) from ground
  • Maximum Speed 7.5 deg/sec
  • Maximum Elevation 5 deg/sec

  • Upcoming Soderbergh movie shot with Canon XL1S

    Las Vegas, NV - Steven Soderbergh, Academy Award-winning director of Traffic, and other box office hits including Erin Brockovich and Oceans Eleven, has just completed shooting his latest feature-length motion picture, Full Frontal, a contemporary comedy set in Los Angeles and described as a movie about movies for people who love movies. His desire to create a motion picture that had the look and feel of Sex, Lies, and Videotape - a film that won him top honors at the Sundance Film Festival - is what prompted Soderbergh to shoot Full Frontal with the Canon XL1S digital camcorder.

    After reviewing several high-end DV camcorders, Soderbergh selected the Canon XL1S for a number of reasons, most notably because of its open architecture and modular design, which allows users to build their ideal camcorder system by changing lenses, viewfinders, and shoulder mounts, and combining multiple audio sources. Since his intent was to shoot Full Frontal completely handheld, the Canon’s XL 16X II zoom lens with Optical Image Stabilization was an essential piece of equipment. His intention was to fully utilize camera movement in production, which required an image stabilizer that would achieve a smooth, steady image throughout the entire zoom range of the lens and counteract any sudden body movement.

    Pioneer introduces next-generation DVD recorder

    Las Vegas, NV - At the Sands Convention center at NAB, Pioneer Electronics is showing its new DVR-A04, the fourth generation in its series of DVD/CD recorder and re-recorder drive. Last year the company scored a breakthrough with the DVR-A03 drive. That drive became extremely popular, especially as it appeared in Apple G4s as the SuperDrive.

    Released late last month, the drive features expanded functionality over the A03, at just less than half the price. Like the DVR-A03, the DVR-A04 supports DVD-R, DVD-RW, CD-R, and CD-RW as recording formats. Improvements to the drive include CD buffer underrun protection (“burn proofing”), support for high-speed CD-RW media, vertical mounting capability, and a smaller form factor that will allow the drive to be included in a wider range of boxes.

    Pioneer also notes video professionals (and consumers) burning their own DVDs will have to pay significantly less for the media than they did last year.

    Two companies bring analog to Avid's Xpress DV

    Las Vegas - Xpress DV, the entry-level NLE program from Avid, does not directly handle analog video material. Transcoding analog footage into digital is the only way to import this material into the program, and two very different companies exhibiting at NAB this year offer different solutions to that problem.

    With a 30-year history, Laird Telemedia is a well-known, established company in the world of traditional video for broadcast. Today the company recognizes the importance of supporting video producers who work with software-based NLE programs, and focuses on facilitating the production of “DV for broadcast.”

    The center of that production is the DVora PC media engine. In a silver aluminum tower or a rackmount setup, the DVora puts all inputs at the front of the machine, including IEEE 1394, component, composite, Y/C, and XLR audio. The machines feature transcoding of analog material for use in Xpress DV, and other software NLE options are available.

    Laird also introduces a 15in. LCD monitor, the LTM-LCD15F, featuring DV input and display direct to the monitor without transcoding, via a FireWire connection on the monitor. It also features SVGA, composite, Y/C, component, and stereo audio input and display. Laird says this is the first FireWire monitor on the market.

    A recent startup exhibiting at its first NAB show, Atlanta-based Digital Tigers introduced a line of LaunchPad computer systems that transcode analog material for import into Xpress DV. But the real focus of the company is adding multiple monitors to notebook computers and supplying portable storage for field editing tasks.

    Options for adding monitors range from the SideCar PlusTwo, which supports adding two monitors to a notebook for Avid editing, to the SideCar PlusFour TV, which supports adding four monitors to a notebook and includes a TV tuner.

    In addition to expanded desktop real estate, Digital Tigers also expands storage by offering hard drives that are meant to travel in carry-on luggage. These options supply either 120GB or 240GB hard drives, which the company says offer faster transfer speeds than portable FireWire drives.

    The company’s hardware also supports Apple’s Final Cut Pro NLE software. Digital Tigers products are set to ship in May.

    The MassTech Group introduces three new products

    The MassTech Group introduced three new products at NAB2002. The MassStore, an asset management system, the Mass Proxy an MPEG transcoder and the Mass Control, a station automation system.

    LiveWave introduces new remote-controlled camera system

    Las Vegas, NV - LiveWave has introduced a remote-controlled camera system that promises to be a valuable tool for sports, news, and surveillance applications. The Contingency News Gathering (CNG)system is a fully remote controlled system that supports numerous broadcast and industrial robotic camera packages and offers several broadcast-quality recording options, including DV50, DV25, or MPEG-2 formats.

    The camera feed can simultaneously record on a local hard drive while transmitting broadcast or broadband enabled live video to remote networked locations. Recording can be monitored and controlled by a remote operator over an Intranet or Internet connection by using any standard web browser. The CNG also features a continuous recording loop to ensure that no shot is missed.

    The camera system has obvious applications for news and surveillance applications where it can be left in a remote location for long periods to capture events whenever they might occur. For sports, the camera can serve as an unmanned camera located high on a stadium wall that can be controlled from a control room to capture certain specialty shots, such as a wide angle shot of the announcers booth or the end zone.

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