Visions, the largest independent Outside Broadcast facilities company in the UK, has taken delivery of the first batch of award-winning PT0760M Multi-channel Video Waveform Monitors to roll off the DK-Technologies production line in Denmark.
Although not officially due to ship until August, six of the units – literally serial numbered one to six - were rushed through the production process ahead of schedule so that Visions could use them for its coverage of Wimbledon 2008. Within hours of Rafael Nadal’s epic victory over Roger Federer, the units were being packed up for an epic of their own – the journey to Beijing, where they played a vital role in capturing the Olympics for US broadcaster NBC.
Visions Technical Director Rob Newton, who spent two weeks in China overseeing the broadcasts, says: “The DK units proved to be incredibly reliable and we had absolutely no problems with them, which is always a good sign for the future of such a new piece of technology. Our engineers really liked them and although we were only using a fraction of their functionality, they turned out to be really useful additions to our equipment list.”
Andy Page, director of DK-Technologies (UK) Ltd, which supplied the units, adds: “In the run up to this sale we worked very closely with Rob and his engineering team to make sure that our product delivered exactly what they wanted. We were under tight deadline pressure because Visions wanted the first six units for Wimbledon, even though we were not officially shipping until August. However, it was our pleasure to be able to help them and we’re even more delighted that their performance was deemed good enough to guarantee them a place on the equipment shipment to Beijing.” For the Beijing Olympics, Visions had a total of 40 cameras in various positions around the city. These flyaway units were used to capture the gymnastics, the athletics and the opening and closing ceremonies for NBC. The DK PT0760M units were integrated into various racking positions where they were used as control scopes for the cameras. “The units can operate as four HD/SD waveform monitors in one box, but for our purposes we only needed two inputs,” Newton adds. “They are so new that we were literally getting software upgrades sent to us while we were using them. That’s the great thing about dealing with a company like DK-Technologies – they really listen to you and pull out all the stops to incorporate your suggestions into their product design. Even before we went to China we were working with the DK designers and giving them our feedback.” DK’s PT0760M waveform monitor is the result of three years intensive research and development that culminated with the launch of the product at NAB 2008. The unit’s potential was quickly recognised and DK returned from the show with a STAR Award for technical innovation. Targeted squarely at Outside Broadcast vehicles, production studios and Master Control Rooms, the DK PT0760 is lightweight and easy to operate. It is also ideal for Camera Control Units as it can monitor up to four cameras from one compact box. “One advantage of having a lightweight unit like the PT0760M is the difference it makes to your shipping costs,” Rob Newton adds. “DK’s unit is much lighter than a tube-based waveform monitor – and much more cost-effective. When you are paying £7 a kilo to get equipment flown overseas the lighter the equipment is, the better.” Visions is so impressed with the performance of its PT0760Ms that it has already placed an order for a second batch. Newton says: “The PT0760M can do a lot more than we needed it to do in Beijing and we’re really looking forward to exploring all of the other features, especially the audio metering options for stereo and 5.1 surround. Visions already has a range of DK products, including audio meters and sync generators that we use on a daily basis. If the whole PT0760M package proves to be as reliable and effective as our existing products, then I have no doubt that we will be using this unit for much more than just camera control.” -ends- About the DK PT0760M
DK’s PTO760 is exactly what the broadcast industry has been waiting for. Its unique feature set includes four separate auto-sensing HD/SD inputs that allow for the simultaneous display of four individual waveform monitors showing G, R, B, Y, Cb, Cr and Luminance. It also has a quad splitter that enables the user to view four simultaneous displays on a single screen, either external or internal. DK has incorporated an in-built Rasterizer so that all of the functions of the PTO760M can be seen on an SD or HD monitor, while retaining the functionality of the built in monitor as a control panel.
The unit’s HD/SD Internal Video Test Signal Generator has an independent output and provides test signals in 1080p, 1080i, 720p and SD formats. The test signals include several colour bar signals, colour black, SDI checkfield and monitor alignment signals.
Ease of use is a key feature of the new meter and to ensure this, DK has provided 11 user presets, user definable Gamut error settings and 10 user definable soft keys for fast set-up. Horizontal and vertical zoom is achieved via an inbuilt jogwheel and the unit also has an internal memory.
The new PTO760 can also incorporate DK’s ground-breaking MSD range of audio meters, which feature the company’s unique JellyFish™ and StarFish™ displays for stereo and surround sound monitoring. This perfect combination of video and audio metering includes HD/SD audio de-embedding, surround sound metering, Peak Programme level measurements of up to 32 audio channels and seven directly selectable scales to conform to in-house standards. Users choosing this combined option also benefit from DK’s new ITU 1770 Loudness meter, which uses an approved ITU algorithm – an extension of Leq(RLB) - covering stereo and monophonic audio signals.