Premium Production Gear at NAB 2009

Digital Video Assistant PSU-3

Digital Video Assistant PSU-3

Digital Video Assistant PSU-3

The PSU-3 is an interesting Video Assist System on the market. The battery powered unit records up to 4 cameras at the same time via a touch screen interface. Besides monitoring four cameras the unit can simulate post-production effects in realtime right on the set.

Bal Broadcast – Multiviewer Floorman

Multiviewer Floorman

Multiviewer Floorman

The Multiviewer Floorman is a wireless touch-screen, quad-split, handheld portable monitor. The system allows four picture sources, including one from a teleprompter, to be viewed on one cable free handheld screen. The monitor can be powered either from the integrated battery or via a battery belt.

The video is created by the unit’s combiner/encoder that accepts the four composite or SDI signals and feeds the modulator/transmitter with an ASI signal. Floorman offers diversity reception and licensed UHF channel transmission (selectable from 21 to 68), making it ideal for either studio or OB applications and eliminating picture loss.

Pro Prompter for iPhone

Pro Prompter for iPhone

Pro Prompter for iPhone

As a quick and fast teleprompter you can use your iPhone or iPod touch with ProPrompter. It’s available with a magnifier to make the iPhone screen appear twice its size. It’s a subscription service of sorts but it comes with the ProPrompter patented hood, studio quality beam splitter glass, anti-reflection hood, iPhone/mobile device clip, ProPrompter software for iPhone –it’s a free download from the App Store plus 1 year subscription to the ProPrompter Producer site. The subscription gives you unlimited script uploads and downloads. The magnifier comes with a custom military grade Storm Case. Retail is US$995.

Invisible Prompter Monitors

How about and invisible teleprompter? If your doing an event and you don’t want the audience to see a teleprompter Jumbo Bright has a solution.  In a nutshell Jumbo Bright’s size and brightness the prompter can be placed at the back of the room. The video above shows the kinds of setups possible with Jumbo Bright.

RL48 Rotolight

RL48 Rotolight

RL48 Rotolight

This looked like a simple and useful product. The Rotolight slips onto your camcorder’s shotgun mic and shines 48 LED’s at ‘Daylight’ (5600K) that’s bright and soft. Perfect for hand held shooting where you are working in low light situations. It runs for up to 3 hours on 3 standard or rechargeable AA alkaline batteries.

Micro-Fill & Micro-Sun Gun Kits

Frezzi makes an economical light kit called Micro-Fill kits. The kit includes a Micro Fill-Light, Battery, Battery Pouch, Quick Charger and all mounting hardware to attach to any camera. A little bit on Frezzi in the video below.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

more about “Frezzi Lights For Hand Held Camera“, posted with vodpod

superBOGIE Camera Swiveler

superBOGIE Camera Swiveler

superBOGIE Camera Swiveler

For those who want to swivel their camera the superBOGIE has a range ±90°. It contais a gear unit with 3 reductions (1:1,2.5:1,5:1) for sensitive adjustment. It’s also been designed for easy mounting with a Touch&Go plate.




I took a quick peek at Fx-Motion’s remote controlled camera systems. Video below;

Fusion RC Helicopter

A "roll your own" Helicopter" camera solution

Redbyte Design

Redbyte Design Down Conversion Devices

Redbyte Design Down Conversion Devices

CG232W Calibrated Monitor

CG232W Calibrated Monitor

CG232W Calibrated Monitor

The ColorEdge CG232W has been designed as an LCD monitor for post-production. According to the manufacturer it can be used for both reference and editing work. What makes it suitable for Post and Reference is that it includes BNC × 2 (SD-SDI/HD-SDI × 2 or dual-link SDI × 1), DVI-D, and D-Sub for direct connection to broadcast and studio sources as well as desktop PCs. Extensive support for SDI signals is also offered with this monitor.

The panel’s gamut reproduces broadcast-standard color spaces such as PAL/SECAM and HDTV. In addition, preset color modes for Rec. 709, EBU, SMPTE-C, DCI, and sRGB are available at the touch of a button.

Zennatek Housing Systems

Underwater Zennatek Housing

Underwater Zennatek Housing

Zennatek Housing Systems design and manufacture products that enable filming in the most extreme conditions and environments. The housing picured above is used underwater and the bag that covers the camera is watertight and extremely flexible so camera operators can operate the camera.

3D Zennatek Housing Systems Being Built On Show Floor

3D Zennatek Housing Systems Being Built On Show Floor

Newtek Tricaster XD3000

TriCaster XD300 Provides Portable Live Production in HD/SD

TriCaster XD300 Provides Portable Live Production in HD/SD

Just about every large organization I know has a TriCaster operating somewhere in their organization At NAB Newtek announced the model XD300 which will operate in either HD/SD and stream (as other TriCasters) from almost anywhere. The company has announced Q4 delivery.


SONY BRS 200 Production Switcher

SONY BRS 200 Production Switcher

At the SONY Booth I came across the BRS-200 switcher which is a new portable switcher from SONY. The BRS-200 can be used for either standard- definition (SD) or high-definition (HD) system configurations. The BRS-200 is an ideal tool for event and live staging, conferences, concerts, and broadcast operations.

Broadcast Pix Slate

Broadcast Pix Slate

Broadcast Pix Slate

Another switcher at NAB that I’ve never blogged about before is the Broadcast Pix Slate. Slate systems are unique because they are the only production form factor switchers on the market with a built-in HD CG, a built-in HD clip store, and multi-view monitoring of outputs and sources. Designed for solo operators the switcher can create live video complete with compelling graphics, animated text, picture-in-pictures, keyed clips, spinning logos and the switcher can even provide robotic control of cameras.  All Slate G Series models create in HD, SD, analog or DVI and can be upgraded to 3G for 1080p full HD video.

PJP-25UR – PC Conference Microphone Speaker

If you use Skype the PJP-25UR conceals itself neatly in a B5-size laptop bag, and weighs only 570 grams.

Photosimile 5000 *


Photosimile 5000 is an integrated solution for creating spherical, 360-Degree and Still flash product animations

Bron Kobold DW 400 All-Weather HMI

There’s something fascinating about a production light that will operate in the pouring rain. If you need some kobold is a manufacturer.

Video Robotics Inc

We're starting to get into more robotic systems at Ryerson. One booth I stopped at was Video Robotics to look at their control systems

Mark Roberts Motion Control – 3D Stepper Control For DSLR’s

A specialty product that I don’t have an image of is Mark Robers Motion Control  3D Stepper control for the creation of lefteye/righteye still images that controls DSLR camera’s…. Link to website above.

Zacuto SharpShooter for Canon EOS 5D

Zacuto’s DSLR Gunstock Shooters

Zacuto’s DSLR Gunstock Shooters

Zacuto was one of several companies at NAB that manufactures kits for DSLR cameras so they will operate as Digital Cinema camera’s. Called Gunstock Shooters they can be used with any 15mm lightweight accessories, follow focuses & matte boxes. They can also be used with or without counterbalance.

ikan V5600 5.6″ TFT LCD Monitor

Ikan showcased its V5600, a 5.6″ LCD monitor designed for HD-enabled DSLR cameras. It has a 1024×600 resolution panel, critical focus is achievable and it works in 480i, 480p, 720p and 1080i. Ikan also demonstrated Director which is a new tool that combines LANC control and high resolution LCD monitor, designed for hands-free camera operation. Director is able to control Zoom, Focus and Record. It provides users a handheld production monitor with variable aspect ratio, a port for headphone out, safe area guides, and A/V input.

Anton Bauer Solar Panel Battery Charger

Anton Bauer unveiled a prototype solar panel battery charger. It’s in the form of a 3.5ft x 5ft (11in x 9 1in folded up) flexible sheet that can be spread on the ground. Its used in remote locations where access to AC power is problematic. The solar panel, made by a company called Power Film, charges a standard two-hour Dionic (Lithium Ion) battery in three hours in full sun.

Roland Edirol VC-50 Video Field Converter



I dont think there is any other conversion box on the market that goes between IEEE-1394 (HDV) and HD-SDI in real time. The VC-50HD converts from HD-SDI to 50/ 35/ 8 Mbps MPEG-2 TS as well as HDV format (25/19Mbps). The unit also supports conversion from SD-SDI to DV format (25Mbps) and 12/ 9/ 2 Mbps MPEG-2 TS. Goes between IEEE-1394 and HD-SDI.

Marshall OLED Monitors

Marshall OLED Monitors are coming....

Marshall OLED Monitors are coming....

OLED display technology seems to have made a name for itself in advance of its mainstream release. Marshall, who are known for a line of LCD production monitors, showed off a new OLED monitor that will be coming out this fall.

SONY RM1000BP LANC Remote Commander

You cant Do That With LANC!

You can't Do That With LANC!

SONY might have released the ultimate LANC controller. Their new RM-1000BP is multifunctional providing LANC contol for ZOOM, REC START/STOP, IRIS, GAIN, and all camcorder MENU SETTINGS.


Viewfactor make a number control devices for cameras. Thier Origo™ allows for  remote start and stop of the RED ONE™ Camera from distances of 1 foot to 25 feet.

Their Inclino™ product strongest and most advanced Digital Motor made. Using Inclino™  large external boxes attached to the camera are not required. Wires are limited to power only. Inclino™ has integrated wireless reception and had easy setup.

Mirus™ is the only fully self-contained motion control pan-tilt head produced. The manufacture indicates claims it is as easy to use as your regular head and costs about the same!


ActionCam «RED-edition»

ActionCam «RED-edition»

Firefly LED Cable Protectors

Firefly LED Cable Protectors

Firefly LED Cable Protectors

Petrol Inflatable Airline Bag

Petrol Inflatable Airline Camera Bag

Petrol Inflatable Airline Camera Bag


NAB 2008 – Camera Report

Supacam DVD Streaming Camcorder

Over the past few years NAB has become the ultimate show to look at video and film related cameras. Judging by the lineup at the B+H Photo booth this year the market appears hot. While the “big iron” cameras often get the lions share of press at NAB, there appeared to be a brisk business at the $299 Supacam DVD Streaming Camcorder at their booth. Although they could not well them on the floor, (they delivered orders directly to your Las Vegas hotel) as the show went on more people showed up on-site with these cameras. The camera’s are a little hard to explain but the video below will give you the lowdown on this popular NAB item.

3D Cameras

Silicon Imaging

Over the past few years NAB has been showing more and more 3D cameras. While some have been for special theatrical purposes, Hollywood’s recent appetite for 3D movies has spawned a variety of approaches to record 3D. While not a new camera Silicon Imaging, manufacturers of the SI-2K line of 2K resolution cameras, announced some new features in their full-sized cameras. Employing P+S Technik’s Professional 3D Mirror Rig, (covered in my camera mounts blog post) they added a frame-accurate start-and-stop feature for 3D shooting and announced it as a new product for 3D shooting. However Silicon Imaging added a surprise! They introduced a new developmental SI-2K Micro camera that they added to the 3D Mirror Rig, making 2K 3D film making truly portable. Heath McKnight covered this better on his blog and you can find his posting at

Below is some test footage of the SI-2K Mini camera shot last year. (Note: This is obviously not a 3D movie)

Below is a video from NAB 2008 that explains how one 3D system actually works.

Red Digital

Red’s new top of the line camera is the Epic 5K digital cinema camera. It “ups” the quality from the 4K Red One released in 2007. Its smaller than the Red One, features a new S35mm Mysterium full frame X sensor, shoots at 1 – 100 FPS, has 2 XLR inputs, HD-SDI, HDMI, FireWire 800/USB2 and is slated to weigh 6 pounds. Expected price for Epic is $40 000 USD. For those Red One owners who wish to trade up, they will receive the full cost of their original Red One –$17,500– deducted from the $40 000 price of the Epic 5K.

Scarlet is a new low cost camera that will beat 2K cameras in terms of capability. It features a 2/3 inch 3K Mysterium sensor and comes equipped win a non-interchangable 8 x 2.8 zoom lens, auto and manual modes of operation, FireWire 800/USB 2 as well as a still image capture mode. It will produce images suitable for cinema projection and will sell for $3000. Below is a video that features an interview with Ted Schilowitz of Red Digital on the Scarlet camera.

And finally Red Digital announced Red Ray. Red Ray is a playback unit which enables one to play 4K, 2K, 1080P, 720P AND SD direct from DVD or from an SD card. The Red Ray unit will interface to viewing devices such as a 4K projector. one simply chooses the playback standard.


SONY was showing the F35 CineAlta Camera. Given RED Digitals announcements it seemed odd that this high-end camera which is more advanced than the current F23 was rated as a 2K camera. The F35 promises to deliver more features and functionality for cinematographers through its larger 35mm Single CCD Imager and it accepts 35mm PL mount lenses. Announcement video below;

Given the F-35’s price tag, SONY’s new PMW-EX3 camera caught my eye. It has a shape similar to Canon’s XL-H1, has three 1/2 inch CCDs and records 1920 x 1080 resolution. Lenses can be interchanged on this camera and it can shoot native 24p (23.98 fps)at the more affordable price of $13,000. Click Here For A Review Of The PMW-EX3 Done At NAB 2008

Promotional video below.

PMW-EX3 announcement video below;

The other camera that caught my eye was the Sony HVR-S270U. It’s form factor is “old school” being a of a big, professional style camcorder. It can record in 1080i or 1080p HDV, DVCAM and DV. The 1080p can record at 24p or 30p frame rates and can be recorded to tape in a progressive format. It has 3 – 1/3″ CMOS sensors, an interchangeable lens system, an HD-SDI output and hasthe ability to capture up to 4.5 hours on select Sony tapes. Its price is approx 12K Canadian.


At first Panasonic’s offerings at NAB 2008 appeared to be very confusing. That’s because it now offers two new compression formats in its camera that take a little getting used to. They are AVCHD and AVC-Intra. AVCHD was built as the successor to HDV, a format that Panasonic never adopted. AVCHD was built around MPEG4 compression where HDV was built around older MPEG compression. AVCHD has been built to record on to SD memory cards. AVCHD can record 1080i and 720p at PH mode (average 21 Mbps/Max 24Mbps), HA mode (approx.17 Mbps), HG mode (approx.13 Mbps) and HE mode (approx. 6 Mbps) It’s only drawback is that not all versions of editing software support this new codec. It requires more computing power to edit this codec so there is a requirement for more modern hardware and software packages. Despite this AVCHD has one other advantages. It’s codec is supported by all Blu-ray players so when one writes content out to that media no transcoding is required and burns will occur much faster. Below is a video from NAB 2008 that outlines AVCHD from the Panasonic booth;

AVC-Intra was built by Panasonic to improve the compression capabilities of its DV-50 and DV-100 camera’s that record to more expensive P2 media. AVC-Intra records data for each individual frame making it much easier in the editing cycle. Below is a video of the presentation at the Panasonic booth that explains AVC-Intra.

Again, because of price, I was checking out the AVCHD line. Panasonic was focusing on the HMC150 which uses HVCHD and comes with a 28mm Leica Dicomar wide-angle zoom and has built-in optical image stabilization. The camera supports the same HD formats as the AG-HVX200 including 1080/60i, 1080/50i, 1080/30p, 1080/25p, 1080/24p native, 720/60p, 720/50p, 720/30p, 720/25p, 720/24p native. The camcorder is also 50Hz/59.94Hz switchable. One drawback of these HVCHD camera’s is that they are not DV centric. As such they lack firewire outputs and use USB to transfer out of the camera or employ HDMI as the live output should they lack an HDSDI output. Below is a first look video of this camera where many of the features are highlighted.

Also in the AVCHD line is the AG-HMC70 shoulder-mount AVCHD camcorder. Like all other AVCHD camcorders it records 1080i images onto SD/SDHC memory cards. No comment on how it looks….. Below is a video on Panasonics AG-HMC70.

In P2 Panasonic announced the AG-HPX170 1080p camcorder. The camera has two P2 slots and records in twenty HD and SD formats including a variety of 1080i and 720p formats in DVCPRO HD, in 480i in DVCPRO50 and DVCPRO, and in 480i in DV. It has switchable aspect ratios and offers 720p variable-speed shooting in the 12fps to 60fps range to acquire fast- or slow-motion. No word if it will be able to record employing AVC-Intra to increase recording times. Announcement video below;

Other Manufacturers

ARRI introduced a D21 camera, CANON introduced HF100, HF10, XL H1s & XL H1A cameras.

Video on ARRI D21 Below

Video on Cannon HF 10 Below

Good Wrap Up Video Of Items Discussed In This Post (below)

Red Will Reveal SCARLET! Will SONY Release the F35 4K Camera? Cooke Has Packaged RED Lenses. But What is Panasonic Going To Do? Will All Be Revealed At NAB 2008????

CINE ALTAI’ve been spend time over the last two weeks preparing my annual trip to the National Association of Broadcasters Conference (NAB). For those who have never been to the show it’s where all the latest and greatest technology surfaces related to the various aspects of broadcasting. Over the past few years the show has become much more production oriented from a content creation perspective. With the emergence of 4K digital Cinema camera’s (aka RED Digital One, DALSA etc.) over the past year and a growing interest from the broadcast community on mobile media these will be the two area’s I’ll be focusing on at NAB. Don’t be surprised if you see a deluge of postings on this blog about NAB over the next week as I prepare for my annual sojourn.

Since Digital Cinema (4K) is on my list I’ve discovered that last November SONY announced an agreement with OMNIBUS JAPAN Inc. to supply Sony’s high-end “F23” line of “CineAlta” digital cinema cameras, as well as the “F35” newly launched in Japan. I’ve found a number of obscure references to it on the Internet and it appears that this new member of SONY’s CineAlta family will shoot on an imager that matches a 35mm film frame….

On another front the Red Digital Cinema Camera Company, another Digital Cinema camera manufacturer, has posted that it plans to reveal details about “Scarlet”, a pocket professional digital cinema camera.

Red continues to garner a lot of “community” interest around their technology. Since the technology hit the street some months ago in Toronto everybody has been talking about the camera. I see that Cooke Optics has joined the revolution as it now offers The Cooke RED Set which is a special package of four S4/i lenses that offers a range of focal lengths from 15 to 100mm.

In reviewing the list of 2 and 4K camera manufacturers I don’t see Panasonic! I expect NAB will reveal more of the Digital Cinema story….


Transferring Those 16mm and 8mm Films In The Digital Era And Making Them Look Great!

Tonight Many Ayromlou of Nerdlogger and myself were questioned on modestly priced technology to transfer 16mm film to video. Short of having an old style Telecine or a more modern –and expensive– film Scanner, the last item that I purchased for this purpose was an Elmo TRV 16 unit. That was over 20 years ago and it’s pictured on the right. The TRV 16 had no projection lens and operated by transferring the film image directly on to a CCD. It had output video and audio connectors to hook the unit up to videotape machines. After servicing us for 20 years the unit is now gone and after an Internet search tonight the device appears to be no longer manufactured. In reading some of the Internet posts this evening, it appears that many people are searching for one of these kind of projectors.

I gather Many must have spent some time searching for it this evening because I see he has posted information on a prototype 8mm film to 4K transfer device that employs the RED One camera!

Some months ago I came across the Sniper-16 (pictured on the left) that is pretty much the same kind of device as the Elmo TRV 16. The Sniper 16 is one of several devices manufactured by MovieStuff. They also manufacture units that transfer 8mm film and 35 mm slides to video. If your concerned about quality, there is a page on their website that originated from PC Magazine. It shows images from one of their units compared against that of a transfer performed on a RANK scanner.


Been Gone For A While! Toronto podcamp 2008 brought me back!

Back In Black

I feel like I’m “Back In Black” as the saying goes but I decided to renew the after hanging out at the Toronto Podcamp 2008 this weekend. I also decided that its time to restart my blog.

Toronto Podcamp 2008

In the past four weekends I’ve attended and participated in a Toronto 4K workflow event, the SMPTE/VSF conference in Houston and Toronto podcamp 2008. To say I’m worn out is an understatement as I worked all of those events on top of my “day job” and as such was not all that talkative at the podcamp event. The content at the Toronto podcamp 2008 was good and I was amazed at the number of PR and marketers now working the space. Between the PR/Marketing component and Twitter discussion seemed to be very popular. I also took in the Open Source, Wiki and Green sessions on Sunday to broaden my knowledge in these area’s.

This years podcamp was much easier for me as Jim Loney, Sam Ellen and Marcel Ramagnano –who are second year students in Ryerson’s Radio and Television Arts Program– did much of the heavy lifting and all of the video recording for Toronto podcamp 2008. They deserve a great deal of the credit. The event went exceptionally smooth because of them.

We also employed different technology this year. We had wireless in place and we used MacBooks that we normally employ in out Hybrid Computer Lab to stream and record the sessions. The RDY2GO Espresso Media Center’s we employed for laptop projection worked perfectly and we only had one incident that I’m aware of and it was a faulty AC extension cable. If your at all interested in the technology we employ in Ryerson’s Rogers Communications Centre it can be found at

Once again Many was exceptional. ( He took some great pictures of the event with his new camera and their posted on his image site at I really like his picture of Steve Saylor just prior to his presentation at I’m looking forward to Many posting the video links because there was a lot of information at the podcamp that I’d like to review.

Random Thoughts

Toronto Raptors

The Toronto Raptors played twice this weekend against the Knicks. Boy did they ever look great on Sunday night and their new players Primoz Brezec makes the team really big. Sam Michell ran the Knicks a little ragged on Sunday putting Ford in the game and switching from a big to a small lineup with Brezec just as New York was getting into a rhythm. Can’t wait for tonights game.

RUSH Snakes and Arrows Tour…. Again!

RUSH is coming back to Toronto. I think I’ll pass on them this time around as it’s the same “Snakes and Arrows” tour that appeared in town in 2007.

NAB and Editing… What’s going on this year?

What’s this about Apple not appearing at the National Association Of Broadcasters show (NAB) in Las Vegas this year. I had heard that AVID dropped out some months before. I realize that video editing has become a “commodity” item but Apple needs to remain connected to its community and the broadcast market. It’s not the size of the booth that matters to me per say but I am concerned (after living the demise of COMDEX) that they just disappeared from the floormap. I understand that these shows take a lot of financial and human resources away from the company but totally disappearing is not a good thing in my opinion. Apple should have gone the presentation “stage” and partner pavilion route in my opinion. They would have saved some dollars on floorspace, reduced the drain on their Human Resources and perhaps added some diversity to NAB relating to third party Final Cut Pro Apps. I don’t think that a lot of people associated with Film and Broadcast industry will go to MacWorld on mass or will line up to buy the “MacBook Air” so how Apple will build a community without NAB will be an interesting thing to watch.

Speaking of NAB there seems to a great deal of confusion about the appearance of RED Digital’s RED One 4K digital cinema camera that was unveiled at NAB last year. The camera started shipping just before Christmas and there are several on the streets of Toronto. The 4K Camera, 4K Workflow event that I helped organize three weeks ago shed a great deal of light on the camera. While the event focused primarily on 4K digital cinema workflows I found the discussion amongst the people who’ve shot with the camera most interesting. What one needs to keep in mind is that the RED ONE is a Digital Cinema camera. As such it uses the same kind of lenses used on Motion Picture film camera’s. What one needs to keep in mind is that it does not have the automatic lenses that are common to most HDTV camera’s and have been designed for New Production. With RED film crews will require “focus pullers”, a skill that the new generation of “Indie” filmakers may be lacking given that they’ve developed their craft with camera’s like Panasonic’s AG-HVX200 that greatly automates the lens.

Blue Jays First 2008 Homestand

Looks like I’ll be in town for the Blue Jays opening homestand this year! It’ll be great seeing as its a Friday night home opener against Boston. Maybe I’ll actually make it out to some games this year.

I came across Microsoft’s Research into a Midair Mouse. It looks promising and I’d sure like to try one.

Pligg is an open source software package that allows one to set up a site like digg!

I found this interesting online pie chart program that I actually make use of when I create reports. I always seem to have trouble when I use Excel for simple pie charts Online Charting