SUNY Buffalo captures HD with Hitachi cameras

The State University of New York (SUNY) at Buffalo State College has upgraded its broadcast studio facilities with three new Hitachi SK-3020P HDTV studio cameras. The cameras are equipped with Canon HD lenses, 8in viewfinders and four cable returns that enable the cameraman to toggle a switch to see other HD/SD signals — such as the teleprompter or a split screen — in the viewfinder. The camera returns carry select production signals from the switcher to the cameras, providing the operators with information on how to compose their shots.

The new Hitachi cameras are used by Buffalo State’s Instructional Resources (IR) television department to produce instructional, administrative and community-related programs. The cameras reside in the larger of two studios, which measures 43ft x 28ft. Professional camera operators run the cameras, and programs air on local Buffalo cable stations.

While the cameras are switchable between 1080i and 720p, with crossconversion available, SDTV 480i outputs are standard and always available. Buffalo State currently produces its programs in 480i (4:3 SD) because its Thomson Grass Valley Zodiac switcher is configured for SD. Also, an Avid Deko 1000 graphics engine is also an SD device, although there are plans to upgrade it to HD in the future. The school’s IR department has also installed a new HD-capable infrastructure, which includes a new Harris Platinum (3Gb) router.

This infrastructure also includes a fiber-optic network that enables camera signals to be delivered from remote locations. This will enable the production crew to use the cameras at other sites around campus, such as the sports complex, auditoriums and lecture halls, and backhaul the signals over fiber to its control room. The new Hitachi cameras support fiber connectivity with a connector on the back.

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