Meet the experts: Phil Crawley

Meet the experts: Phil Crawley

Chief Engineer Phil Crawley was a customer for a number of years while working as a broadcast engineer, before jumping the fence and joining the team in 2002. He’s since helped hundreds of customers get to grips with the future of broadcast as well as designing bespoke fibre installations. As our resident king of colorimetry, we challenge you to find anyone who know more about HDR than Phil.

Putting news first

“I started off at the BBC in the 80s, and the BBC rotate engineers round everything – studio work, maintenance and outside broadcast – so you end up doing every job in TV engineering. After that I worked at Carlton, Oasis Television, which was one of the bigger editing facilities at the time, and Resolution, where I worked mostly on location shows. I was the Technical Supervisor for the first three years of Big Brother, then I did Fame Academy and a few more of those sort of on-location shows before joining root6 in 2002.”

Fibre a la mode

“I do a lot of bespoke fibre installations, and one of the things that is fundamental to the way that customers build their facilities is the difference between single and multi-mode fibre. Even quite experienced engineers can be a bit flakey about it, so we do a lot of knowledge transfer to customers around that. They’re often quite surprised when they ask, ‘how can I send 20 video feeds between a datacentre and our premises?’ and I can give them a proper, economic solution.”

Moving with the times

“There’s a real variation in how customers approach new things. There’s one sports team we’ve been working with for several years now, and I’ve seen them move from a very traditional, standard definition channel that went out on Sky to a HD web-delivered channel with virtual studios and distributed editing. They’ve really embraced everything we’ve shown them and pushed forward in a way that other teams haven’t. We’ve also done studios for teams who are still delivering in a traditional, linear way, and they’re only getting a few thousand viewers at any given time, whereas those who have moved with the times are getting hundreds of thousands of unique hits on their web channel.”

The most important meal of the day

“We’ve been running Tech Breakfasts for engineers and their managers to catch up on things that are in flux, because the underlying infrastructure at facilities is getting more complex. For example, there are a few tricks to make high speed Ethernet work reliably, compared to previous standards that just worked because they worked, and then there are a lot of considerations around dark fibre, multi-modal fibre, and more. You can sign up for the next event here.”

For future reference…

“One of the hottest topics at the moment is the difference between scene-referred and display-referred HDR. The HLG standard developed by the BBC and NHK is popular because, as dimensionless video, it’s backwards compatible with SDR and means you can continue using your existing 10-bit installations. As we’ve said before, HLG uses relative brightness values to dictate how an image is displayed. This means that the image can be displayed on monitors with very different brightness capabilities with little impact on the artistic effect of the scene. Because it uses relative values, HLG does not need to carry metadata, and can be used with displays of differing brightness in a wide range of viewing environments.

“Dolby, on the other hand, are promoting their DolbyPQ display-referred system, which uses absolute dimensioned values for the light captured. The metadata that travels in the SDI payload defines how video levels equate to light levels, and how they should be reproduced at the DolbyPQ display end. The display then reports back to the playback device via EDID or SDI payload to convey its maximum light output. To work out which is right for you, get in touch – our details are below.”

If you want to know more, give us a call on 03332 409 306 or email broadcast@Jigsaw24.com. For all the latest news, follow @WeAreJigsaw24 on Twitter, or ‘Like’ us on Facebook.

IBC 2017: Panasonic announce new live mixer and 360 degree camera

IBC 2017: Panasonic announce new live mixer and 360 degree camera

Panasonic’s IBC offering are focused on live streaming and broadcast, with the announcement of a new “live streaming production centre”, the AV-HLC100, and a 360 degree 4K live camera. Let’s do the HLC100 first. 

Panasonic AV-HLC100

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Panasonic have designed the AV-HLC100 for environments where there are very few operators. It combines an ME switcher, a PTZ camera controller and an audio mixer into a single unit, so you can have one person handling everything from shooting to transmission – ideal for conferences, sports events and live streaming setups. It’ll even record a copy of your stream at the same time as transmitting it.

The HLC100 supports up to eight cameras, and allows you to mix embedded, line-input and mic-input audio with your video streams. It can accept four SDI inputs (or three SDI and one HDMI) and eight network ones, and is compatible with NewTek’s NDI technology to support IP workflows. It also supports RTMP, for direct transmission to popular live platforms like YouTube Live.

AW-360C10 and AW-360B10

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The C is for camera and the B is for base unit, just to clear up any confusion on that score. The four synchronised Cs record uncompressed 4K (3840 x 1920) in a 2:1 equirectangular format, with built-in white balance and exposer tools ensuring consistency across the four images, and an active stitching tool that constantly shifts the stitch site so that the subject of your shot never gets lost in the fold.

These cameras generate 4K/30p video at low latency to enable live transmission (Panasonic have included a few other physical features to help live transmission too, such as lockable HDMI covers to stop one camera being unexpectedly removed mid-broadcast). You can control your cameras from a PC over a network connection, or from an iPad over a WiFi connection.

Availability

We’re still waiting on an official drop date, but Panasonic promise both the AV-HLC100 and AW-360C10 will both arrive this quarter.

If you want to know more, give us a call on 03332 409 306 or email broadcast@Jigsaw24.com. For all the latest news, follow @WeAreJigsaw24 on Twitter‘Like’ us on Facebook or take a look at our IBC roundup.

IBC 2017: Atomos launches $2K Sumo19M HDR 1200nit high brightness monitor

IBC 2017: Atomos launches $2K Sumo19M HDR 1200nit high brightness monitor

Atomos are always good value at IBC, and this year they’re on our must-see list yet again thanks to their sub-$2K high brightness HDR monitor, the Sumo19M (UK pricing to follow). Video and press release below. 

 

 

Atomos today launches the Sumo19M, an affordable high brightness production monitor with HDR capabilities, 3D LUTs and touch control. At $1995 US it is perfect for professional film and video shooters wanting to up their game on set, without breaking the bank. Sumo19M is a monitor-only variant of the Sumo19 launched at NAB earlier in the year. The Sumo19M is optimised for monitoring, with a reconfigured user interface and dual SDI inputs for A/B comparison. It shares the same screen, ergonomics and industrial design as its sister model, but without recording. As a result, the Sumo19M is set at a lower price point.

HDR, high brightness and LUTs

The Sumo19M has a daylight-viewable 1920 x 1080 IPS screen capable of stunning 1200nit brightness, combined with the ability to display a wide range of 4K and HD sources. The Sumo19M features 10-bit processing coupled with Atomos’ unique AtomHDR engine for easy and accurate HDR monitoring. You can easily set optimal exposure when exposing for Rec.709 or HDR material. There is a comprehensive set of manufacturer-specific Log gamma settings pre-installed and multiple custom LUTs for creative looks can be stored and displayed on the Sumo19M. These LUTs are loaded via a standard 2.5 inch drive placed in an Atomos Master Caddy. The unique HDR slider allows users to rapidly examine Log images when shooting for either HDR or SDR. In SDR the slider can be used to set exposure to prevent excessive noise in shadow areas, or blown-out highlights.

In addition, the Sumo19M has the full range of exposure and composition tools found on other Atomos 4K monitors. Waveform monitoring, zebras, 1:1 and 1:2 magnification, peaking, false color, vectorscopes, anamorphic desqueeze and frame guides are all available at your fingertips. Display accuracy can be guaranteed over time using a i1DisplayPro probe and calibration software from color specialists X-rite. An optional sunhood is also available which can be left on the unit and folds down for transport.

Perfect for productions large and small

The result is that the Sumo19M gives DPs, directors, producers, gaffers, focus pullers and clients a precise way to assess their images on-set. “The idea with the Sumo19M is to bring the latest advances in modern on-set monitoring to a much wider range of cinematographers, directors, producers and other creatives than ever before.” says Jeromy Young, CEO of Atomos. “We have harnessed our engineering knowhow and mass production techniques to make the Sumo19M available to our customers for much less than any monitor with similar performance. Now anyone will be able to utilise a high brightness on-set monitor and HDR, not just high-end productions.”

In the edit suite

Sumo19M is just at home in the edit suite as on-set. The color-accurate display allows productions the ability to grade their footage with confidence. Unlike a regular computer monitor, the Sumo19M directly accepts broadcast spec video signals over SDI and HDMI for accurate monitoring.

Connections

The Sumo19M has two 12G/6G/3G SDI inputs for A/B input comparison of 4K or HD sources, plus a HDMI 2.0 input for easy connection to consumer imaging devices like DSLRs, camcorders or mirrorless cameras. Frame rates of up to 60 fps are supported. Signals can also be output and also cross- converted between SDI and HDMI, with the added ability to output a signal with LUT applied, or to convert a Log image to HLG and PQ HDR standards on the fly.

User interface

The reconfigured user interface gives direct access to all key functions via the touchscreen. To make it feel more familiar the layout emulates a traditional push-button monitor, but with the key advantage of more rapid touch selection and easier advanced option access. The elegant and intuitive layout means you and your crew won’t get confused setting up.

Ready for production

Not only is the Sumo19M beautiful to look at, it is robustly built to handle the rigours of daily production. It has an aluminium chassis with built-in armor and distinctive grey protective bumpers on each corner. There are multiple mounting holes on each side for attachment of handles, wireless video systems or other accessories. The Sumo19M has a 3.5mm headphone jack for on-set review of audio.

Mounting options

On the rear of Sumo19M there is an industry standard VESA hole pattern for mounting to a wide variety of third party brackets. The monitor also comes with solid metal feet for desktop use.

Flexible power

Sumo19M has three separate XLR power inputs. Along with one for a regular mains supply, it has a further two for the Atomos hot swap battery system which provides the ability to power continuously in the field. The battery wing plate included allows two V-Lock or Anton Bauer battery plates (not included) to be attached to the Sumo19M; when one battery runs out the other takes over, allowing the flat one to be replaced without powering down the monitor.

Availability

The Sumo19M will ship by the end of September for $1995, plus local taxes. It sits alongside the Sumo19 that offers the same high brightness AtomHDR screen for monitoring, but adds recording and playback of up to 4Kp 60 and 2Kp 240 from a wide variety of cameras.

If you want to know more, give us a call on 03332 409 306 or email broadcast@Jigsaw24.com. For all the latest news, follow @WeAreJigsaw24 on Twitter‘Like’ us on Facebook or take a look at our IBC roundup.

NAB 2017: NewTek TriCaster offers native support of JVC KY-PZ100 PTZ cameras

NAB 2017: NewTek TriCaster offers native support of JVC KY-PZ100 PTZ cameras

JVC Professional Video, a division of JVCKENWOOD USA Corporation, today announced NewTek TriCaster multi-camera video production systems will offer native support of JVC KY-PZ100 robotic PTZ network video production cameras. JVC will demonstrate its PTZ cameras at the 2017 NAB Show (Booth C4315), which runs April 24-27 in Las Vegas, Nev.

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TriCaster offers control of a select group of PTZ cameras directly from its switcher user interface, which is useful for education, government, worship, corporate, traditional broadcast, and sports applications. JVC PTZ cameras will be added to the list of supported cameras as part of the next TriCaster software update and in the just announced TriCaster TC1. In addition to LAN and RS-232/422, TriCaster can control KY-PZ100 over Wi-Fi and 4G LTE with appropriate adapters.

“JVC has been part of the NewTek Developer Network since 2015, and TriCaster users can already use our ProHD and 4KCAM wireless cameras in multi-camera productions,” said Lon Mass, vice president of marketing, JVC Professional Video. “We are very pleased that TriCaster will now offer native support of our PTZ cameras, which will be a very valuable feature for productions that rely on limited personnel.

”We are excited to add control of JVC’s PTZ cameras directly from the interface of the NewTek TriCaster. Customers are going to love native support of JVC’s PTZ cameras in TriCaster,” said Michael Kornet, executive vice president of Business Development for NewTek. “The combined JVC PTZ and NewTek TriCaster solution is a perfect fit for the flexibility, ease-of-use, and cost savings this represents in the market.”

Available in black and white housings, the KY-PZ100 features a 1/2.8-inch CMOS sensor and 30x optical zoom lens, and its f/1.6-4.7 maximum aperture delivers excellent low-light performance. When connected to a Wi-Fi adapter or LTE modem via USB or directly connected to a LAN, it streams up to 1080p/60 video at a variety of bit rates with two-channel audio and minimal latency. The KY-PZ100 also supports on-board HD recording at up to 50 Mbps to a MicroSDHC/SDXC media card, and recorded files can be uploaded to an external server.

If you want to know more on the biggest and best NAB Show releases, give us a call on 03332 409 306 or email broadcast@Jigsaw24.com. For all the latest news, follow @WeAreJigsaw24 on Twitter‘Like’ us on Facebook or take a look at our roundup post.

What’s so exciting about Anova PRO?

What’s so exciting about Anova PRO?

Rotolight’s new LED studio/location light (an update of 2013’s Anova) has location shooters all a-twitter thanks to its 10% weight reduction, 43% jump in brightness and its potential to help rolling shutter cameras handle stroboscopic light. 

LED lights have been gaining momentum for a while now, and one of the best received was Rotolight’s Anova, which brightened our 2013 considerably. This year’s update, the Anova PRO, was a big hit at NAB, not in the least because it’s 10% lighter. This has gotten a big thumbs up from the ENG section of the Anova user base, as exemplified by the good folks at NewsShooter, who got a good look at the PRO at NAB:

 

Anova PRO: key specs

As well as being easier to lug around, the Anova PRO has 720 LEDs compared to the Anova’s 576. That 25% jump in the number of LEDs translates into a 43% brighter light, with an output of 6545 Lux and three feet. The colour temperature is tuneable from 3150 Kelvin to 6300 Kelvin and it has a fifty degree beam angle.

As well as these excellent specs, it comes with four excitingly-named features of Rotolight’s own design, namely:

CINE SFX mode. This equips your Anova PRO with a series of effects you can deploy on set or location in order to imitate, say, a roaring fire, a flickering television, a welding torch and several other things that have historically made rolling shutter cameras very unhappy indeed. (The official list appears to be: strobe, lightning, fire, cycle, throb, police, TV, spin, weld, spark, film, neon and gunshot.)

Flash Sync. Flash Sync lets you integrate the Anova PRO into your photography workflow, using your Anova PRO as a strobe and meaning you only need one set of lights to shoot stills and video.

True Aperture Dimming. This feature allows you to accurately calculate and display the correct aperture for your subject at any distance, meaning you no longer need to meter.

Designer Fade. This mode gives you custom fade up/fade down effects, so that you can capture those in camera rather than having to add them in post.

You can order yourself an Anova Pro here. 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.

Newsflash! JVC unveil GY-HM660 and GY-HM620

Newsflash! JVC unveil GY-HM660 and GY-HM620

This is the news! JVC have just released the industry’s first ever streaming camcorder, the GY-HM660, with an integrated IFB (interruptible foldback) audio channel, perfect for live broadcasts. In other news, they’ve also launched the GY-HM620, which rocks an improved CMOS sensor.

Whether you’re reporting in your wellies from a flood-ravaged coastal town or waiting on the latest big money movement for that Premier League prodigy, the integrated IFB in the GY-HM660 (a free firmware update available in June 2016), along with the live streaming capability, means reporters in the field can communicate directly with the studio through IFB while streaming live HD reports. Real Time Messaging Protocol (RTMP) support means you can even connect directly to YouTube and the like, and it’s compatible with Streamstar’s range of streaming production tools too.

JVC GY-HM660: Perfect for news

Over to you, GY-HM620

Also new in the 600 series camp (the 660 and 620 replace the 650 and 600, respectively) are the sensors. Both the GY-HM660 and the GY-HM620 feature three new 12-bit CMOS sensors with improved F13 (50Hz) sensitivity for better performance in low light. As well as an upgraded 3.5″ LCD display, the integrated Fujinon 23x auto focus zoom lens offers a wide 29-667mm (35mm equivalent) focal range and includes three ND filters as well as manual zoom, focus and iris rings.

Craig Yanagi, Product Marketing Manager at JVC Professional Video, had this to say: “The new 600 Series camcorders are built to deliver the best performance for run-and-gun ENG and EFP shooters. They have all the tools you need in the field – a specially designed Fujinon lens with optical image stabilization, excellent low-light performance, and multiple native recording formats for the industry’s fastest shoot-to-edit workflow.”

– The JVC GY-HM660 will be available in April 2016, and the GY-HM620 is expected to ship in June 2016. We’ll have more as we know it!

Want to know more about JVC cameras? Call us today on 03332 409 306 or email broadcast@Jigsaw24.com. Alternatively, ‘like’ us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter @WeAreJigsaw24.

Get 0% finance on a NewTek TriCaster 460

Get 0% finance on a NewTek TriCaster 460

It’s the time of year when vendors and distributors, having made it through Black Friday intact, are overcome with the kind of relief and seasonal fellow-feeling that leads to limited time Christmas offers. Case in point: Digibox’s 0% finance offer on NewTek’s TriCaster 460.

Until December 30th, you can buy a TriCaster 460 from any NewTek Elite Partner (hi, that’s us) and get 0% finance on your purchase – as long as it’s a 460, and you’re not buying the specially-priced ‘education’ models – these are discounted enough already, apparently.

If you’re not sure whether TriCaster 460 is the right model for you, you can download a helpful guide from NewTek here, although with support for HD, SD, SDI, analogue inputs and pan-tilt-zoom cameras, it’s hard to think of a scenario where it’d struggle. You also get 16 switcher channels, support for four cameras, six external and five internal video switcher sources and a hard drive with the capacity to record up to 70 hours of footage.

And you’ll get it all without having to pay interest, as long as you’re quick.

Buy now

 

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

NewTek shave £600 off the cost of a TalkShow

NewTek shave £600 off the cost of a TalkShow

For a limited time, NewTek are offering their TalkShow Skype management tool for a cool £2199 as opposed to the usual £2795 ex VAT, saving you a smidge under £600.

 

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Already beloved of pro broadcasters on several continents, TalkShow allows video producers to initiate or receive Skype calls from remote guests using desktops, laptops, mobile devices, conference room systems, internet TV or game consoles running Skype software.

It contains everything you need to manage a Skype call as if it were simply another in-studio source, drastically reducing the risk of conversion loss, aspect ratio squashing and video artefacts and giving you more professional-looking video calls with a richer, enhanced picture. And if you’re worried about space, rest assured it packs up in a convenient (and robust) 1U rackmount unit.

You can pick up your discounted TalkShow here.

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.

AVID | ISIS qualified for NewTek TriCaster and 3Play

AVID | ISIS qualified for NewTek TriCaster and 3Play

Avid’s ISIS | 5500 is the leading collaborative storage for a wide range of post-production and broadcast workflows, and is now qualified for live production with TriCaster and 3Play 4800. Using ISIS | 5500 as the recording drive for live sessions enables media to be immediately available to a variety of devices simultaneously including editors, transcoders and playout.

TriCaster 8000

Now, as an Avid Elite Partner for storage and a NewTek partner with one of the UK’s few certified trainers on staff, we’re obligated to get incredibly excited by news from either of these two, but according to Avid’s official press statement (and the aforementioned TriCaster trainer), this is legitimately awesome for anyone looking to record large-scale live broadcasts. Here are the official details of the test:

Avid ISIS | 5500 was tested with single and mirrored TriCaster 8000s. The mirrored configuration opens up a number of new workflows providing higher scale and redundancy for multi-screen productions. ISIS | 5500 enables the mirrored TriCasters to playback the same streams simultaneously. 3Play 4800 is NewTek’s leading integrated sports production solution, adding ISIS collaborative storage enables more creative workflows to deliver a more compelling experience for broadcasters, pro leagues and venues.

The combination of ISIS | 5500 and the NewTek portfolio allows up to eight streams to be recorded and simultaneously, play two streams and receive two channels of graphics simultaneously, with the added benefit of being able to instantaneously share and monetise your content. Gigabit Ethernet provides high speed, reliable connectivity between NewTek and ISIS. Qualified products include ISIS | 5500 and ISIS | 7500 and the NewTek TriCaster 8000, 860, 460, 410. Simply install the ISIS client on NewTek TriCaster Pro or 3Play and configure it to login and mount the required ISIS workspaces.

ISIS | 5500 is the leading collaborative media storage choice for facilities and workgroups. ISIS | 5500 scales in increments of 16, 32 or 64TB of capacity and delivers multiple GBs per second of throughput. The ISIS File System includes a number of patented mechanisms to provide predictable, reliable performance to multiple simultaneous connections. Predictable multi-stream performance as delivered by ISIS | 5500 is especially important in these live-to-air and fast turnaround workflows.

Avid ISIS | 5500 is now qualified through the NewTek Developer Network. Avid ISIS | 5500 and NewTek TriCaster and 3Play are available now.

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.

We were proud sponsors at the Production & Post Forum

We were proud sponsors at the Production & Post Forum

If you were at BAFTA on Wednesday night, you might have spotted our Soho team cheering along – and you’ll have almost certainly seen our extremely subtle and not at all aggressive promotion of our new Soho office… 

Powered by Broadcast magazine, the Production & Post Forum brought together some of the industry’s leading lights to talk workflow, delivery standards, funding, career progression and how to make your footage look as cool as Peaky Blinders, among other things.

As well as plastering the place with our logo, bags, and drinks tickets (we like attention) we also sent along our M&E team to see what they made of things. Here’s what they had to report…

Kim Beard, Post-production Product Specialist

“Hugo Blick was worth getting into central London by 9am for, which is the best review you can give anyone. A lot of his talk focused on The Honourable Woman as it was his latest, and it was interesting to see the UK and US trailers side by side – they looked like they were for completely different genres. It was interesting to hear how he balanced having many masters – most of his productions run at a deficit and rely on international sales to make money, so he ends up answering to a lot of people – but still manages to have his own vision of each project.”

Lauren Irwin, M&E Marketing Manager

“Stephen Lambert spilling Gogglebox’s secrets was probably my favourite bit. I’ve never actually seen Gogglebox before the clips they showed us in the forum (which were hilarious – everyone was laughing). I guess I was quite pretentious about it and thought, “why would I watch someone watching television?” but it was really interesting to see the relationships and the fact that they hadn’t auditioned people, they’d found them by hanging around places and looking for the sort of people they wanted on the show. This seemed to be a running theme, too – Dan Adamson from Firecracker Films had gone with the same angle for their new show Quiz Night,  which films pub quizzes around the UK. It was just really great to hear that they’re creating more compelling television that their audiences can relate to.

“Seeing Richard Merrik set up a radio mic in three seconds was good too – a fast way to point out that it pays to get the professionals in because it is actually really hard to do (I know, I’ve had to muck around doing it at Uni and it is a nightmare with different clothing material).

“Gabriel Tate was a really compelling chair on the conversation with Hugo Blick and asked really engaging questions.”

What was your Forum highlight? Let us know @WeAreJigsaw24 or on our Facebook page. For more information about any of the tech you saw, give us a call on 03332 409 306 or email broadcast@Jigsaw24.com