IPTV Channel Shoots With Fujinon HD Lenses

Cinematographer Rob Draper chose to shoot Singlemalt.tv, an Internet channel exploring the world of single malt whisky in high definition. If the number of viewers is anything to go by, his choice has made an impact. Draper, who has been a cinematographer for 30 years, said he never considered shooting in anything but HD.

The channel, which launched last September, has logged half a million viewers in 107 countries who watch the channel for an average of 69 minutes at a time.

Draper uses as many as five production crews working for Draper’s Visionmill Production Co. to carry out a heavy production schedule in locations around the globe to capture Scotch whisky festivals and events, as well as interviews with distillery owners. Shooting in HD also allows Draper to build a catalog of video that can be easily repurposed.

All crews use either the Fujinon HA13X4.5BERM HD ENG-Style lenses or the HAc15x7.3 Cine-Style lens. Visionmill crews have the lenses mounted on Panasonic VariCam HD Cameras and the HVX200 P2. Crews based in Scotland shoot on the HVX200 or Varicam, and crews in other countries use either VariCam HD or PAL Digi Beta. This July, the crews will standardize to use Panasonic AJ-HPX-2000 P2 HD camcorder and convert to a P2 workflow to simplify editing.

Draper credits the intense popularity of the newly launched IPTV offering with the high-quality look of the channel’s programming. “Most IPTV channels start out with five- to 15-minute page views. I believe we’re way over that average because we’re delivering quality most people don’t expect from the Web,” said Draper.