Bluefish444—Craige Mott, Managing Director

Q. What broad technology trends do you think will be front and centre at IBC 2012


In the production market, the two workflow trends I see as continuing to gather speed are the adoption of 4K resolutions and the increased use of camera manufacturer’s RAW formats. 4K resolutions have been around awhile, but there have been very few native 4K monitoring options. This is starting to change quickly.

Hardware and software solutions debayering RAW camera formats to HD SDI for preview and encoding is another trend I see continuing.

Q. Any thoughts on the current economic climate?

My short answer is that it is not ideal. Demand exists for technological change and workflow solutions are developed to meet customers’ needs. But in this climate there is not a lot of confidence or incentive for a customer to transact. Conditions vary throughout the market though. Some territories are still aggressively adopting new and improved products and workflow solutions. It wouldn’t be any fun if it was too easy.

Q. What’s new that you will show at IBC 2012 and that broadcasters should look for?

Bluefish444 will be offering a new bundled software product called 4K | Review with our Epoch | Supernova video card. It is a Windows-based RGB/YUV 4K player to preview 4K files in a production environment.

Bluefish444 will also be showcasing a range of new mini hardware converters, performing video conversions like SDI to HDMI and Analog to SDI.

Q. How is your product offering different from what’s available on the market?

Bluefish444 has a very versatile video card product named Epoch | Supernova. It processes 8-, 10- or 12-bit frames at 12-bit pixel depth, which is four times the quality of other video card manufactures. Its SDI connectors can be configured as simultaneous inputs, simultaneous outputs or combinations of input and output.

Epoch | Supernova is integrated by many broadcast OEM manufacturers via our software development kit. However, the same product doubles as a 4K | Review solution in production and a multichannel real-time HD SDI AVID DNxHD encoder with optional software developed by us.

Bluefish444 is the Swiss Army knife of professional video. We offer a large variety of hardware/software uncompressed SDI workflow solutions for broadcasters and production facilities.

Q. Where are you based and how many employees do you have? Anything we should know about your company?

Bluefish444 is a privately held company based in Melbourne, Australia. We are the great survivors of the uncompressed SDI video card market. We are an innovative company with a bias towards providing high-quality, customizable solutions, as opposed to developing a one-size-fits-all product for mass consumption.

We have a loyal customer base that regards support as just as important as the final product. We know we do that well.

I’m not at liberty to advise how many employees we have, but the number is continually increasing because we have been experiencing strong growth the past three years.

Q. How many years have you been going to IBC show and what is your fondest memory? What is your favourite restaurant or pub?

I’ve been visiting Amsterdam since 2001 and I look forward to it every year because the city is beautiful with its architecture and canals. It has a rich creative history and the museums are incredible.

A fond memory I have is in the early 2000s at the IBC party there was a guy holding centre stage rap dancing in front of hundreds of people, possibly thousands. He was a great dancer and heads were nodding in approval until he slipped and fell. The beers had been flowing about an hour so there was a raucous laughter.

I’ve had some great nights at the Supper Club and have left the Bourbon Street Blues Bar at closing time more times than I care to remember.

Q. Last year I asked whether 3D was Hope, Hype or In Between. This year I want to know similar thoughts on “social media and broadcasters.”

I used to think social media was a way for people with too much time on their hands to stalk celebrities. My thinking has come round these past two years and I can now see that it is a powerful marketing tool to effectively present your message, at least from Bluefish444’s perspective.

Presumably broadcasters are using social media as a new form of revenue stream by sharing revenue with telcos. It is not a business model that I am familiar with, but as far as it affects Bluefish444, we have some OEM developers providing social media solutions to broadcasters so I’m happy about that because we make a sale when our customer does.