NVIDIA’s Quadro K6000 GPU unveiled at SIGGRAPH 2013

NVIDIA’s Quadro K6000 GPU unveiled at SIGGRAPH 2013

NVIDIA have once again proceeded to steal everyone’s thunder at SIGGRAPH 2013 by releasing the Quadro K6000 GPU, apparently “the fastest and most capable GPU ever built”, as well as a new line of GPUs designed specifically for mobile workstations. Read on for the full press release, or take a look at the official NVIDIA Quadro K6000 spec sheet

ANAHEIM, Calif.— SIGGRAPH — July 23, 2013— NVIDIA today unveiled the visual computing industry’s new flagship technology – the NVIDIA Quadro K6000 GPU, the fastest and most capable GPU ever built.

NVIDIA today also launched a new line of professional graphics GPUs for mobile workstations, delivering the highest levels of performance and graphics memory ever available on mobile platforms.

The Quadro K6000 GPU delivers five-times higher compute performance and nearly double the graphics capability of its predecessor, the NVIDIA Quadro 6000 GPU, and features the world’s largest and fastest graphics memory.

Combining breakthrough performance and advanced capabilities in a power-efficient design, the Quadro K6000 GPU enables leading organisations such as Pixar, Nissan, Apache Corporation and the Weather Channel’s WSI division to tackle visualisation and analysis workloads of unprecedented size and scope.

Animation and Visual Effects – Pixar

“The Kepler features are key to our next generation of real-time lighting and geometry handling. We were thrilled to get an early look at the K6000. The added memory and other features allow our artists to see much more of the final scene in a real-time, interactive form, and allow many more artistic iterations.” – Guido Quaroni, Pixar vice president of Software R&D

Product Styling – Nissan

“With Quadro K6000’s 12 GB of memory, I am now able to load nearly complete vehicle models into RTT Deltagen and have stunning photorealism almost instantly. Instead of spending significant time simplifying the models to fit into previous hardware, we can now spend more time reviewing and iterating designs up front which helps avoid costly changes to tooling.” – Dennis Malone, associate engineer, Nissan North America

Energy Exploration – Apache

“Compared to the Quadro K5000, the Quadro K6000 tripled the performance when running jobs on Terraspark’s InsightEarth application. With jobs running in mere minutes, we can run more simulations and get better insight into where to drill. In this business, drilling in the wrong place is a multi-million dollar mistake, and the Quadro K6000 gives us the edge to make better decisions.” – Klaas Koster, manager, seismic interpretation, Apache Corporation

Unprecedented Performance

The Quadro K6000 GPU is based on the NVIDIA Kepler™ architecture – the world’s fastest, most efficient GPU architecture. Key performance features and capabilities include:

– 12GB ultra-fast GDDR5 graphics memory lets designers and animators model and render characters and scenes at unprecedented scale, complexity and richness

– 2,880 streaming multiprocessor (SMX) cores deliver faster visualisation and compute horsepower than previous-generation products

– Supports four simultaneous displays and up to 4k resolution with DisplayPort™ 1.2

– Ultra-low latency video I/O and support for large-scale visualisations

“The NVIDIA Quadro K6000 GPU is the highest performance, most capable GPU ever created for the professional graphics market,” said Ed Ellett, senior vice president, Professional Solutions Group at NVIDIA. “It will significantly change the game for animators, digital designers and engineers, enabling them to make the impossible possible.”

New Mobile Workstation GPUs

NVIDIA today also revealed a new flagship professional graphics GPU for workstation notebooks, the NVIDIA Quadro K5100M GPU. Delivering the highest levels of performance and graphics memory available on notebook platforms, the Quadro K5100M anchors a new line of workstation notebook graphics that includes the Quadro K4100M, K3100M, K2100M, K1100M, K610M, and K510M GPUs.

Quadro GPUs are designed, built and tested by NVIDIA to provide the superb reliability, compatibility and dependability that professionals require.  They are certified and recommended by more than 150 leading software application providers worldwide.

Availability

The NVIDIA Quadro K6000 will be available beginning this fall from HP, Dell, Lenovo and other  major workstation providers; from systems integrators, including BOXX Technologies and Supermicro; and from authorised distribution partners, including PNY Technologies in North America and Europe, ELSA and Ryoyo in Japan, and Leadtek in Asia Pacific.

The new Quadro mobile workstation graphics product line will also be available beginning this fall from major mobile workstation OEMs.

Want to know more about the latest from NVIDIA? Give us a call on 03332 409 306 or email 3D@Jigsaw24.com. For all the latest news, follow us on Twitter or ‘Like’ us on Facebook

Workflows we love: Avid and DaVinci Resolve at Timeline TV

Workflows we love: Avid and DaVinci Resolve at Timeline TV

Timeline TV provide coverage for some of the world’s largest sporting events, including Wimbledon, the 2012 Olympics and the Tour de France. Their Timeline North office in MediaCityUK doubles as a base of operations for some ambitious post work, with their first year in MediaCityUK seeing them take on a huge array of work with the BBC, as well as film projects and dubbing work. 

One of the latest projects to go through the facility was ‘Andy Murray: The Man Behind the Racket’, an hour-long documentary for the BBC which chronicled Murray’s run up to Wimbledon 2013. Although Murray picked up injuries during the initial shoot and only returned to competition the day before the project was due to be completed, Timeline TV were able to pull together a final cut in record time thanks to a combination of Avid Symphony, Blackmagic Design’s DaVinci Resolve and Avid Pro Tools.

“The Andy Murray documentary was offlined on an Avid Symphony,” explains Eben Clancy, Timeline TV’s Post-Production Director and head of its MediaCityUK facility. “It was due to be onlined in Symphony too, but Andy won Queens the day before the deadline, so we had to extend the offline, which left us with very little time. We sent an AAF of an offline to DaVinci and contracted Chris Packman to grade it – he’s a big DaVinci supporter – while our editor, David Horwell, was still making final tweaks.”

After the final AAF was graded, the project then made a round trip back to Symphony for its final online edit, with a Pro Tools dub being carried out the same way. “Chris managed to grade, render and export an hour long doc in eight hours, which we were seriously impressed by,” says Eben.

His team have been using the same workflow to handle an extremely complex offline for BBC series Fierce Earth. “There are Sapphire effects and time warped shots throughout, plus graphics with nested pictures,” explains Eben, “but we’ve still been able to round trip an Avid AAF through DaVinci and grade every shot, even if we couldn’t always see the final result. The only real issue was the time warped shots. DaVinci could handle shots running at 500% or less, but we had shots running at 5000%. We had to do ‘video mixdowns’ of them and then they all worked smoothly, and we managed to grade seven episodes in two and a half days.

“The main benefit of Avid AAF and round tripping from Symphony to Resolve is that the final sequences came back into Avid with all the Sapphire plug-ins, nested shots etc perfectly in place. The edit was identical to the offline but the pictures being referenced were beautifully graded. Joy!”

Want to know more about your post workflow options? Give us a call on 03332 409 306 or email broadcast@Jigsaw24.com. For all the latest news, follow @Jigsaw24Video on Twitter or ‘Like’ us on Facebook.

 

What’s new in Media Composer 7?

What’s new in Media Composer 7?
Not content with saving us money by dropping the price, saving us time by upping the number of mind-numbing tasks that can be done in the background, improving our MAM and making it easier for us to work in hi-res, Avid have also tightened up Media Composer’s integration with Symphony, Interplay and Pro Tools. Here’s our round up of the key changes…

Automating the process of media management with Dynamic Media Folders
This new feature allows you to designate any folder on your machine as a Dynamic Media Folder and tell Media Composer to automatically copy, transcode or consolidate any files you drop into it. This accelerates and simplifies AMA tasks, as you can assign a profile to each folder to determine the format, resolution and destination of any files it works on. For example, you could drop 4K rushes into a folder, create HD DNx36 offline, transfer it to ISIS and start working with it immediately while the transcode happens in the background – you’ll receive a notification right on your timeline when the folder has finished its work. You can also automatically copy and relink to new media locations and check in to Interplay 3.0 without having to consolidate or transcode clips.

New codecs and improved AMA support
Avid’s quest to get you working with every format in Christendom continues in Media Composer 7, with AS-11 standard support and XAVC 2k/4k support both being added. The AMA workflow has been streamlined, too – linking media can now be taken care of in a single window, and you can drag and drop the clips you want to link to rather than generating new media. All your AMA media will now appear in the Media Tool panel so you can keep track of it, and you can relink, transcode or consolidate audio and video tracks separately. Any files with Alpha channels will retain them if they’re linked to (they appear as matte keys on your timeline).

Supporting AMWA standards for file-based delivery
Media Composer 7 sees Avid adding new tools to support project segmentation. They support the AS-11 delivery standard, and you can access your AS-11 file directly so that you can edit them without importing. Your segmentation will be displayed in the timeline, your metadata will show up in the right bin columns, and you’ll be able to export your AS-11 files in a single multi-essence OP1-A MXF file. There’s also AS-02 support for anyone looking to manage multi-version master files as a single bundle. You can create and manage the file essences of J2K, DNxHD, 1:1, AVC-I and IMX files, too.

Colour Space Conversion
1D and 3D LUT and CDL support is now built in throughout your Media Composer workflow, allowing you to manage, preserve, create and output colour metadata, convert colour spaces in real time, bulk modify clips, apply custom LUTs from other apps such as DaVinci Resolve and auto-convert clips to their proper colour space using their metadata. Your clips’ colour info will now appear right in the media bin, and taking a hint from the increasing popularity of node-based editing in other post apps, Avid are now letting you change the order in which multiple colour transforms are added to a clip.

Free edit stations from rendering with Avid’s new background transcode engine
As we mentioned earlier, you can now transcode, consolidate and copy clips in the background. Avid’s background transcode engine leverages not only your computer’s CPU but the power of any platforms you’re connected to (an Interplay Sphere environment for example) in order to process transcoding jobs with the least possible impact on your system performance. You can manage jobs simply using the new Process List, which allows you to cancel, pause and prioritise tasks, as well as monitor their progress.

Converting high res to HD with Frame Flex 
Frame Flex is a cunning new feature that enables easy pan and scanning of high res images so that you can cut an HD frame out of a 2K or 4K shot in order to deliver that media straight to HD. All you do is use a simple framing selection tool to choose the area of the clip you want to keep (you can check what it will look like in a source monitor UI). You shot is then cut down to size, and you can keyframe it, animate it using pans and zooms, use the same settings to bulk modify clips and then output them via Avid I/O or an Open I/O supported third party solution.

Improving your audio workflow
Last but not least, Avid have also given Media Composer’s audio workflow a boost. As the improved integration with Pro Tools and its new video engine suggests, the emphasis is on making audio for post workflows as seamless as possible and saving you valuable time. You can now cache audio waveforms and instantly redraw them on the timeline or at the source. The waveforms are stored at project data level and associated with a user, not a project, so you can have your own cache rather than working from a centrally stored one. You can also make gain adjustments on the timeline simply by clicking and dragging a clip’s gain, and there’s even an audio mixer UI that you can call up right on the timeline.

Symphony and Interplay
Media Composer will run on Mac OS X 10.7 and 10.8,  Windows 7  and Windows 8. If you have ongoing projects, don’t worry – you’ll now be able to roll back to the previous version of your software if you need to. If you opt for Media Composer 7 with Symphony option, you’ll get a 30 day free Symphony trial in-app, complete with Boris Continuum Complete, and if you decide to upgrade, all you need to do is enter the upgrade key Avid provide. Once you have your Symphony licence, you’re free to move it between systems, so your artists aren’t tied to one machine.

One thing you need to bear in mind is that Media Composer 7 comes in two versions – a standard version and an Interplay version. As the name suggests the Interplay edition is the only one that’s capable of integrating into a full Interplay environment, and as a result costs £380 extra (unless you’re an academic  – the standard price education version of MC7 is Interplay-capable. You also get some exclusive networked licensing options). However, you can upgrade from the standard to the Interplay edition for just £359 ex VAT, so if you’re thinking of moving to Interplay or are not sure how many of your users will require access to it, we’d recommend starting out with basic licences and then upgrading as many as you need when you’re ready to head over to Interplay.

You can buy Avid Media Composer 7 now on our site. If you’d like to know more, give us a call on 03332 409 306 or email broadcast@Jigsaw24.com. For all the latest news, follow @Jigsaw24Video on Twitter or ‘Like’ us on Facebook

CINEWARE, CINEMA 4D Lite and CINEMA 4D: What After Effects users need to know

CINEWARE, CINEMA 4D Lite and CINEMA 4D: What After Effects users need to know

When it was announced that the Creative Cloud iteration of After Effects would be capable of two-way collaboration with Maxon’s CINEMA 4D range, it fast became our favourite new feature. Now that we’re a little way down the road, the dust has settled, the workflow has been explained and the deals have been announced, we thought it’d be a good idea to take a look at CINEWARE, CINEMA 4D Lite and CINEMA 4D and  work out exactly which option is best for whom, and what it is you’ll get for your money. Here are your key facts…

Maxon CINEWARE

Not actually a standalone application, CINEWARE is the name of the plug-in that’s been added to After Effects to let it communicate with CINEMA 4D. It’s what makes it possible for After Effects users to enjoy that two-way workflow, choose to render CINEMA 4D files in an After Effects-based renderer and see changes to cameras and lighting in both programs, regardless of which they were made in. It arrives as part of your After Effects CC download, and is not available to anyone still using After Effects CS6 or earlier.

Maxon CINEMA 4D Lite

This is the stripped back version of CINEMA 4D that comes as part of your After Effects CC download, and is the program you’ll actually do the C4D work in (although if you have a full version of C4D R14 or above already installed on your computer, After Effects CC can also harness that to deliver the same two-way workflow to a full version of C4D).

You can create basic 3D objects and animations in CINEMA 4D Lite, then export them to an After Effects layer as footage for further editing. Both programs can render C4D files, but if you choose to render directly in CINEMA 4D Lite you’ll be limited to low-res renders of 800×600 or less – this cap is removed if you render the footage within After Effects. However, being a Lite version, this doesn’t support advanced features like ambient occlusion, global illumination or polygon modelling.

That said, it gives you far more 3D capabilities than simply doing everything in After Effects would, and Maxon have worked hard to improve camera inoperability between the two programs, so it’s now far easier to make edits in either and have them instantly recognised by both.

If you’re working on motion graphics or only need very simple 3D assets, we reckon you can get away with sticking with CINEMA 4D Lite. If, however, you’re going to need to produce larger or more complex 3D elements or need to animate characters, we’d recommend levelling up to the full version of CINEMA 4D.

CINEMA 4D Broadcast and CINEMA 4D Studio

Let’s get the most pressing news out of the way first: if you’re using After Effects CC, you’re eligible for a 40% discount when you buy CINEMA 4D Broadcast or Studio with a Maxon Service Agreement. This is a pretty amazing deal, and if you think you’ll need a full version, it’s best to get clicking before Maxon come to their senses.

So what are Broadcast and Studio? Well, Maxon split CINEMA 4D into different versions based on what kind of 3D work you do. Studio is the full package, combining the features found in graphic-design orientated Prime and the more CAD-focused Visualize with advanced character creation and mapping tools, all the advanced rendering features that you won’t find in the Lite version, a physics engine and an unlimited client network for the fastest possible rendering. If you’re animating detailed (read: hairy and furry) characters, need to plan complex collisions or will be working with scenes that contain hundreds or thousands of objects, Studio is the CINEMA 4D package that will help you power through projects, all without losing that live link to After Effects.

CINEMA 4D Broadcast is a little more pared down, containing all the tools you’ll need for creating high-end 3D motion graphics and virtual environments rather than characters. It’s got all the rendering options that are missing from CINEMA 4D Lite, plus extra libraries of lighting and camera rigs so it’s easier to create 3D elements that’ll slot straight into any footage you’ve shot, not to mention CINEMA 4D’s infamously comprehensive cloning toolset.

A note on hardware…

If you are planning on using this discount as an excuse to move to CINEMA 4D Studio and take on more 3D-heavy projects, be aware that CGI rendering will take even longer than your usual After Effects jobs. To minimise the time difference, you’ll want to grab yourself a powerful GPU, and make sure your machine has as many core as you can cram into it. We’d recommend opting for a top spec iMac (you can repurpose this as a display and render node once the new Mac Pro hits) a Mac Pro or one of HP’s Z-series workstations.

Want to know more? Give us a call on 03332 409 306 or email broadcast@Jigsaw24.com. For all the latest news, follow @Jigsaw24Video on Twitter or ‘Like’ us on Facebook.

After Effects CC users can save 40% on Maxon CINEMA 4D!

After Effects CC users can save 40% on Maxon CINEMA 4D!

When After Effects CC came out, one of our favourite new features was the inclusion of CINEMA 4D Lite, a stripped down version of Maxon’s CINEMA 4D 3D software that allowed you to create more complex motion graphics.

If using the Lite version has whetted your appetite for 3D work, you’ll be pleased to hear that anyone with a copy of CINEMA 4D Lite can now get 40% off the cost of an upgrade to CINEMA 4D Broadcast or CINEMA 4D Studio if you buy before August 30th and add in an MSA agreement. Huzzah!

Studio or Broadcast? 

Maxon have split CINEMA 4D into five different versions, each designed for a different type of graphics work. If you’re looking to add 3D elements to broadcast graphics, Broadcast is for you – it uses a lot of the same tools as traditional 2D graphics packages, but adds 3D tools and additional rendering options. The Studio version is a bit more involved, bringing in character tools, a physics engine, hair and more, so you can create character rigs and animations easily.

Take a look at CINEMA 4D Studio and CINEMA 4D Broadcast on our site.

Want to know more? Give us a call on 03332 409 306 or email broadcast@Jigsaw24.com. For all the latest news, follow @Jigsaw24Video on Twitter or ‘Like’ us on Facebook.

Sony’s F5, F55, R5 and ASX memory card get firmware updates

Sony’s F5, F55, R5 and ASX memory card get firmware updates

Not to be outdone by WWDC, Sony have snuck out a fair few announcements of their own. Admittedly, they’re not quite on the level of a new Mac Pro, but these soon-to-be-available firmware updates are going to be welcome news for anyone shooting with an F5 or F55 (both of which are still available with up to 24 months’ 0% finance, by the way) or who uses an R5 recorder

Here’s the full feature list from Sony:

F55 / 5 v1.14 includes: 

– 2:1 de-anamorphic v/f (not SDI) display

– AXS card 3D naming (left, right and centre)

– APR alert – gives a warning after five days to run APR (black balance). Sony advise you to “please be sure to run it when suggested, we have put a lot of work into this it’s very powerful!”

– Various bug fixess including fan run control

Download v1.14 for the Sony F5 and F55 here

Download 3D LUTs for your F55 and F65 here, and see the F55’s Ultra Colour Gamut in action here 

R5 V1.20n includes:

– Support for interface unit for FS700 (HXR-IFR5)

– Improved memory card support and recovery function

– A number of bug fixes, so please update even if you’re using it with a freshly updated F55

Download firmware v1.20 for the AXS-R5 recorder here

AXSMemory card V1.20 includes: 

– Improved reliability and end of life indication (“Please update all your cards!” Sony remind us)

Want to know more? Get in touch with the team on 03332 409 306 or email broadcast@Jigsaw24.com. For all the latest news, follow @Jigsaw24Video on Twitter or ‘Like’ us on Facebook

Top production deals: 3 years’ finance on TriCaster lease hires

Top production deals: 3 years’ finance on TriCaster lease hires

We’re long-term fans of NewTek’s TriCaster: it’s a really scalable, versatile mixer with a simple workflow and one of the most powerful chromakey setups available thrown in for free! To celebrate its glory (and to help you get the best setup for your needs) we’ve gotten together with NewTek and JVC to put together some streaming starter kits with different specifications that include TriCaster units, JVC cameras, training and support – everything you need to kick start content creation. And not only that, but we’ve arranged for 3 years finance deal for anyone who wants to lease the kit rather than buy it outright (and who passes a credit check, obviously). Never say we do nothing for you…

First up: what’s in the kit? 

We’ve got four key kits for you to choose from: one with a TriCaster 40 and three JVC GY-HM70 cameras, one with a TriCaster 455 and three JVC GY-HM650 cameras, one with a TriCaster 855 and four JVC GY-HM750 cameras, and a final one with the almighty TriCaster 8000 and four JVC GY-HM790 cameras, in case you’re feeling especially ambitious.

All of these bundles come with free support courtesy of our in-house tech team and half a day’s training from our on-staff NewTek Certified Operator, so there’ll be nothing to stop you hitting the ground running.

Why would I want to lease rather than buy? 

While we reckon TriCaster units are excellent value for money, the fact remains that for a lot of users they represent a serious investment. With video production being quite a changeable industry and new standards and connections cropping up all the time, NewTek’s updates to TriCaster tend to be quite significant, and if you can’t afford to update your hardware regularly, there is the potential for you to get left behind. A lease hire scheme allows you to spread the cost of a unit over a longer period of time, and gives you far more flexibility over which hardware you use. If you need to use a new standard, you simply return your existing unit and hire a newer machine. If you’re working on a project that requires old school equipment, you just hire the previous version of TriCaster. Simple.

There are financial benefits, too – leasing equipment on a month-by-month basis can go down in your books as a (tax deductible) operating expense rather than a (non-deductible) capital expense. Plus, this may well work out cheaper for you in the long run.

Which is right for me?

I work in education, and need to create HD content on a budget. Go for the TriCaster 40 and JVC GY-HM70. The only downside here is that the TriCaster 40 is only component, not SDI, so you won’t get quite as high image quality, and will need to use an extra output to get audio. That said, we reckon that component will be plenty good enough for any education types looking to record and share lessons or lectures, and will look fine if what you really need is HD now, and cheap – it just means you have to plug in a couple of extra cables.

I want to create content for my own digital signage, or I’m in education but I still need SDI. If you want the superior image quality of SDI but don’t want to break the bank, go for the TriCaster 455 and JVC GY-HM650. Allowing you to work with up to four cameras in ready-to-edit formats, the 455 offers increased functionality without complicating the TriCaster workflow. The GY-HM650’s wireless capabilities make it perfect for anyone who needs to stream footage back to a central facility (be that a studio or a classroom) while they’re still in the field.

The 855, on the other hand, is a durable rack mount system that we’d recommend for any sports or ENG team. It provides the highest quality, 32-bit floating point with 4:4:4:4 video processing, while the lightweight GY-HM750 will let you shoot SD or HD footage and comes in a form factor that’s perfect for events work, or anywhere you need to move quickly to cover the latest action.

I’m an OB and live streaming pro, or a house of worship. The TriCaster 8000 is for you. It has the widest variety of connections and inputs, and its built-in social media sharing options mean it’s the easiest way to share your content instantly. You’ll also benefit from having the versatile GY-HM790E, which can shoot SD or Full HD, and is equally at home as a standalone camera if you’re shooting in the field or as part of a studio setup if you have your own facility. (If you’re working on greenscreen, it’s also worth bearing in mind that the TriCaster 8000 gives you the most options possible when it comes to creating virtual backdrops, allowing you to create custom virtual studios to drop in behind your presenter, so you can ensure the entire production is on brand.

Want to know more about your TriCaster options? Give our team a call on 03332 409 306 or email broadcast@Jigsaw24.com. For all the latest updates, follow @Jigsaw24Video on Twitter or ‘Like’ us on Facebook

Building your 4K workflow: UltraStudio, DeckLink and the PVM-X300

Building your 4K workflow: UltraStudio, DeckLink and the PVM-X300

If you think it’s time to get cracking with 4K but aren’t sure where to start, the good news is that there are plenty of increasingly affordable options out there for you. One of the leading 4K pushers is Blackmagic Design, whose popular UltraStudio and DeckLink lines are now both 4K capable. And if anyone’s been hanging round the blog long enough to remember the time we stitched four monitors together to get a 4K image, you’ll be pleased to hear Sony have a far simpler solution to hand now…

For capture and playback: Blackmagic Design Decklink 4k

Blackmagic Design’s popular Decklink range of capture cards allow you to get your hands on SD, HD, 2K and 4K footage faster, with throughput rates of up to 40 Gbps. The key thing about Decklink 4k cards is their flexibility: you can plug them into Mac, PC or Linux workstations, and choose to work to a range of film and television standards to ensure that whatever assets you create are in the correct format for your client from the get go. And, despite coming in at a very reasonable £625 ex VAT, these cards offer fantastic image quality. You can work in 10-bit SD, 10 or 12-bit HD, and for 2k and 4k in YUV 4:2:2 and RGB 4:4:4. Each pixel is copied like for like with no generational loss or damaging compression.

Another boon for anyone working in 4K is the inclusion of the new 6G-SDI and HDMI 4K connections on the Decklink 4K Extreme. This takes the old quad link HD-SDI connections and multiplexes them in order to reduce your cable count, giving you the ability to get four times the resolution of standard HD using only two BNC SDI cables. All of which means that working on 4K projects in programmes like Nuke and Resolve is now far more affordable, and will require far fewer changes to your infrastructure due to the lower cable and router point count.

For connecting to decks, cameras and monitors: Blackmagic Design UltraStudio 4K

UltraStudio 4K is Blackmagic Design’s leading breakout box for 4K workflows. Thunderbolt-equipped for faster throughput and featuring virtually every type of video and audio connection you’re likely to encounter, this unit is perfect for a rack or your desktop. Like the Decklink range, it supports  6G-SDI video technology for a more streamlined 4K workflow, and well as including HDMI 4K, analogue component video, 16 channels of SDI audio, two channels of balanced analogue, two channels of unbalanced AES/EBU audio, timecode, up/down/cross conversion, reference and serial deck control.

The latest Thunderbolt cables mean that your UltraStudio 4K can now be up to 30 metres away from your main computer, and the internal power supply means there’s no need to clutter your desktop with (or fork out for) an external plug pack. Win.

For monitoring: Sony PVM-X300

This 30″ LCD monitor is currently available with 24 months’ 0% finance, but that’s not the only reason why we’re keen on it. The IPS LCD screen ensures a wide viewing angle, while the inclusion of the same Trimaster technology that powers Sony’s OLED monitors means you can be sure of high colour quality and accuracy. The PVM-X300’s four 3G-SDI and HDMI 1.4a connections are designed to work natively with the F55, allowing you to connect the camera via a single HDMI cable to view 4K, which is great for on-set monitoring.

Sony have a direct SxS 4K player in the works that will allow you to play back XAVC 4K material directly from an SXS Pro + card, and control it from the PVM-X300’s control panel. Full details of this are still to be announced, but it’s an option that will be available after launch of the monitor this summer.

Want to know more about what’s in store for your 4K workflow? Give us a call on 03332 409 306 or email broadcast@Jigsaw24.com. For all the latest news, follow @Jigsaw24Video on Twitter or ‘Like’ us on Facebook

e7 in action at Netherfield Primary School

e7 in action at Netherfield Primary School

Assistant Head Nadeem Shah explains how iPad is helping to engage students at Netherfield Primary, an inclusive urban primary school in the second most deprived quintile in the East Midlands whose head teacher was recently named teacher of the year at the Pride of Britain awards

You provided staff with iPad devices back in 2012 – what were your main goals in doing so?

We wanted to introduce staff to the new technologies available. With iPad, that was mostly
the vast App Store, that would open up so many new opportunities for the children, and also the touchscreen technology that made it so accessible for students and for adults. We took an educated guess as to whether people would be totally involved with it, and they were. Some of our staff who were maybe reluctant ICT users actually turned to keen ICT users very quickly.

Was it important to you that staff got comfortable using the devices before handing them out to pupils?

Absolutely, which is why we invested in having 18 for staff across the school, mostly in areas where we were going to deploy iPad devices to students. When we had the whole school iPad training session it was just such fun. The laughter around the staff room was fantastic. The staff engaged very much straight away, and giving them that time to go away and get familiar with the iPad first meant that they were able to engage fully with the learning on the iPad in the term that followed. It was absolutely the right decision to make.

What made you decide it was time to trial a student 1:1 scheme?

We need to keep up with the times. ICT is constantly evolving and developing, and this is what they’re used to at home. They have access to this kind of technology on a daily basis, and if we don’t provide them with it in school then very soon […] children aren’t engaging with ICT because the technology that we’re using is obsolete, and then the learning across the curriculum can be at a disadvantage. We obviously want to keep up to date so kids are engaged and involved with new technologies as they happen.

Why did you choose the e7 Project?

We stumbled across the e7 Project and are delighted we did. We were at a seminar where Apple and some education agencies were running a session, and one of the teachers mentioned that they were having an e7 rollout and that the Jigsaw24 team were at the event. In our inimitable style we tried to crash the party and see if any more iPad devices were going.

Did you have to do any work to prepare for the trial?

Yes, we had to make sure the WiFi was capable of handling the workload, so we actually had some guys from Jigsaw24 in to do a survey for us. We’re really glad we did it because it brought up some blips and some gaps as well as some over-use of the WiFi – where the signals were too close and bouncing off each other. We had a bit of a redeployment and moved around some of the access points, and it made a big difference.

Talk us through how you used the iPad devices during your e7 term.

We had 16 based in our Foundation unit along with ten staff ones. We had eight in our Nurture provision classes, and then the other 16 around school to be booked out. They were out in every class, all the time. We had to create a separate log out book for the tablets because they were being used so often and so positively, to move the students’ learning on with the fantastic array of apps available, so that was brilliant.

Tell us a bit about how you went about finding apps for your classes.

Because we were able to give staff the opportunity to try out iPad over the holidays, they
found some fantastic stuff app-wise that we were able to install, and as the weeks and months progressed we would have regular weekly meetings where staff would talk about apps that they’d found and recommend that we should roll them out.

GarageBand was phenomenal for our music tuition. What has been particularly good for us has been being able to target specific aspects [of apps] to pupils’ individual learning. So if a whole class is doing something, you can tailor the apps to suit their individual needs and learning gaps.

It’s not just, ‘Right kids, you’re all going on this program’; they might be going on different apps, or they might be going to different aspects of the same app to hit their individual needs, which is perfect for us. Rather than generic teaching, it’s all about personalising the learning, and iPad and the apps are a fantastic tool to help personalise learning for the children.

What were the main benefits of the trial for students?

We specialise in supporting children with challenging behaviours, and this is a fantastic carrot for them to have. I’ve got a pupil with me now who’s a great example of a pupil who’s gone from having specific difficulties to really turning himself around and getting on in class, and the iPad has been a fantastic tool for doing that. Not only does it engage the children, who want to learn through those devices, it supports them in being occupied but in a positive way, a learning way.

You’re not just saying ‘Here, play on this game,’ it’s about learning. And it’s a fun way for them to engage with their learning, he’s telling me. The opportunities that they may have had to switch off in a classroom, which led to negative behaviours, become much less of an occurrence because they’re engaged in their learning full time.

How have parents responded to the scheme?

It’s been great, the parents are getting involved and the kids are coming in saying ‘We’ve downloaded this app at home, Sir, have a look at this one, it’ll be great for what we’re doing at the moment’, so the home learning is being engaged in that way as well.

Did you encounter any problems, and if so how did you overcome them?

There’s always the funding thing. Obviously ideally we want one per person full time, but the funding issue involved in that is what it is. Because they were so popular, getting them to everyone who needed them was an issue, but it was workable because we had what we had. I think if we had any more it would have been easier.

The one issue we did have was that we weren’t able to get Apple TVs working, but straight away Chris came to me and said that he’d found a solution to that at another school, so we should be able to use them effectively now.

What were the key factors in deciding whether or not to keep the iPad deployment?

Once that resource had been in school and the children had access to it, there was no way we could take it away from them. The learning that they’d done, the enjoyment they got out of it and the engagement that they’d had meant we couldn’t. And the staff ’s faces when we said that the iPad deployment was going back were, ‘What are we going to do now?!’

How did you find working with the e7 team?

Great! Chris was always at the end of the phone.

I’d often call him or send him an email and to his credit, he was available at hours I wasn’t expecting him to be. I’d send an email at nine, ten o’clock at night expecting him to pick it up in the morning, and I’d get a reply within a couple of minutes nine times out of ten. And he was local as well, so if there was an issue we couldn’t handle over the phone or digitally, he would pop in either for an extended period of time or on his way to somewhere else, so the support was always to hand, prompt and of a very professional standard.

We’re just delighted with the project and long may it continue!

Want to know more about the e7 Project? Give us a call on 03332 409 333, email e7@Jigsaw24.com or visit our site. For all the latest news, tips and reviews, follow @Jigsaw24Edu on Twitter or ‘Like’ our Facebook page

App of the Week: Sage 50

App of the Week: Sage 50

Sage’s powerful accounting tools have been going down a storm on Macs and PCs for some time, but less well known is the Sage 50 app, which lets you access your Sage 50 Accounts data on your iPad or iPhone.

What is Sage 50 and what can you do?

Sage 50 on the iPad is a secure accounting service that basically lets you access all-important accounts information from Sage 50 Accounts 2012 or above, no matter where you are! Designed for large organisations where you’ll need to be able to keep up to date with accounts on the move, this mobile app lets you:

– Demo data built-in to the app to experience functionality without having to have a live connection
– Dashboard, Profit & Loss, and Headline reports provide an overview of company financial position
– View details and transactions for customers, suppliers and bank accounts
– View and create invoices, sales orders, quotations and manage stock take
– View transactions on customers, suppliers and bank accounts
– View price lists and product details and manage stock take
– View projects and related activities

How does Sage 50 work?

Sage 50 works alongside your existing Sage 50 Accounts software, and provides quick and easy access to accounting tools on your iPad. All you have to do is download the app from App Store, log in using your existing Sage 50 credentials and you will be able to do all of the above.

One favourite feature

The user interface. Sage 50 takes many of the tools you’ll likely be used to in the full software versions and makes them friendlier to the iPad’s UI. As you can see from the screenshots below, this has an almost dashboard-like approach to it, with a clear breakdown of the different tools available down one side.

That being said, bear in mind that this is meant to give you access to information on the move, and is not an extension of the desktop version, so don’t go expecting it to do everything you can in the office.

How much is Sage 50 and where do I get it?

Sage 50 is completely free from the App Store, but as I mentioned before, you’ll need to be running Sage 50 Accounts 2012 or a more recent version to be able to log in. Download now.

Sage 50s baby brother: Sage One? 

The Sage One app comes in four parts: Accounts (£10 pcm), Payroll (£5) and Cashbook (£5 pcm), with an Accountant Edition for anyone who becomes so confident that they start offering financial advice to other companies.

Rather than apps in the traditional sense, these are web apps that let you track your business performance, manage incoming and outgoing assets, invoice clients and manage pay runs for up to 15 staff. You can also work online with your accountant, use the app to manage relevant contact information and create highly visual, easily to parse reports to communicate progress.

One of the biggest benefits of Sage One is that it’s fairly easy to use for the accounting novices out there.  Sage One cuts through all of the complications in more fully-featured software, simplifying the process for small businesses and sole traders. To give you an idea of the size of business you’re looking at, the Payroll app comes in three different pricing options; the largest of which is for up to 15 employees.

Want to know more about using apps for business? Get in touch with our team on 03332 409 306 or email sales@Jigsaw24.com. For all the latest news follow @WeAreJigsaw24 on twitter.