Ross Video acquires Belgian robotic camera company

Looking to expand into new areas of digital production and attract new types of highly automated projects, Canadian manufacturer Ross Video has acquired the assets of a robotic camera systems company based in Brussels, Belgium called FX-Motion. The FX-Motion Furio system has been used to control cameras and provide compelling visuals on productions such as the Eurovision Song Contest, “So You Think You Can Dance” and news studio production environments. No financial details relating to the sale were provided.

Ross said it would rename the company Ross Robotics and retain all of the principal employees at FX-Motion, including founders Stijn Vanorbeek and Roberto Gaziano. Vanorbeek, formerly CEO of FX-Motion, will now serve as president of Ross Robotics.

The Furio system is available in two versions: Furio Robo (Full Robotics System) and Furio RC (Remote Control System). The system leverages an “absolute positioning system” and rail based tracking that makes it ideally suited to virtual set and augmented reality applications.

The Furio Robo is designed for live television production studio use in which a single operator controls multiple cameras with pre-set shot and motion path recalls. The system consists of a Pan-Tilt-Zoom Head (PTZ), Rail Based Dolly System with Elevator and a sophisticated IP based control system. The system scales from a simple PTZ head on a fixed tripod to a full multi-camera rail system.

Furio RC (Remote Control) is designed for applications in which an operator controls the camera system remotely using a local (encoded) fluid head and foot pedals to move the camera side to side and up and down. Furio RC translates the camera operators every move to the remote camera. Providing workflow benefits for live stage productions, the Furio RC system allows one camera operator to rapidly move a camera from one end of the stage to the other and get shots not possible with a roaming camera person.

David Ross, CEO Ross Video, said the acquisition makes sense due to the “close link” between the company’s OverDrive automated production control system, production switchers, XPression graphics and FX-Motion’s robotic camera systems.

“We are [now] able to offer some great integrated production solutions to our clients and really push the state of live production technology,” Ross said.