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A virtual press conference from Sound & Video Contractor

Archive by Robin Hoffman

Production and Rental Firm Media Visions Takes New FOR-A HVS-390HS Video Switcher on Rock Band Tour

Cypress, CA – When event production company and rental house Media Visions was looking for a versatile video switcher earlier this year, the company turned to FOR-A’s HVS-390HS unit. Since adding the FOR-A switcher to its rental inventory last April, the HVS-390HS has proven to be a popular choice for Media Visions’ customers, including the rock band Avenged Sevenfold.

Last May, a Media Visions crew took its new HVS-390HS on tour with Avenged Sevenfold, who began using the switcher for U.S. shows. The band then used the FOR-A switcher for performances at England’s HVS-390HS_Image02Download Festival in June, brought it back to the U.S. for Rockstar Mayhem Festival tour dates throughout the summer, and put the switcher to work during Japan’s Summer Sonic concert in August.

“The band liked the switcher so much, they took it with them everywhere,” said Ken Sorrell, Media Visions’ Nashville-based production and accounts manager. “Since getting the switcher back from Avenged Sevenfold in August, we haven’t been able to keep the unit in stock because everyone wants to rent it.”

Major selling points of the FOR-A 2.5 M/E switcher included its advanced AUX technology and ability to utilize four keyers on each M/E. This allowed the band to switch between three LED screens and graphics to make the LED walls look like doors opening up on stage.
“The color correction function on every output of the switcher sealed the deal for us in choosing the HVS-390HS,” Sorrell explained.

“Because we were able to take advantage of that color correction feature with Avenged Sevenfold’s productions, there were no visual differences between the LED screens and house projection. That was a big perk.”

The HVS-390HS offers a Web browser interface, allowing users to use a PC, Mac or tablet to remotely make switcher adjustments. Media Visions takes advantage of this software control feature, using iPads to easily make adjustments.

“Another great thing about the FOR-A HVS-390HS is that it’s such an easy switcher to learn how to use. I’ve brought the unit to universities to teach students how to operate a switcher because there’s such an easy learning curve,” adds Sorrell.

Mike Cruce, the president and owner of Media Visions, explains the long history that his company has had with FOR-A, saying, “We purchased so many FOR-A switchers in the late 1990’s and early 2000’s, we ended up hiring one of their employees to help us handle the demand. In the early millennium, the industry and economy took many turns, but FOR-A continued their commitment to high-quality technology and great customer service and support. FOR-A equipment is at the top of our list for both rentals and installations, and we look forward to the new technology that the company brings to the
market.”

About FOR-A
FOR-A is a major manufacturer and distributor of video and audio systems to the broadcast, postproduction and professional video markets. For more information about FOR-A’s product line, call 714-894-3311 or visit our web site at www.for-a.com.

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McFatter Technical College Updates Aging Control Room with Broadcast Pix

Billerica, Massachusetts – Broadcast Pix™ today announced McFatter Technical College and High School in Davie, Fla., is training the next generation of video professionals with a Granite™ 6000 integrated production switcher. New students begin learning the basics of switching with the Granite during their first of four courses at the school, and produce 30-minute practice “drills” every Friday and every other Thursday to test their skills.

Part of Broward County Public Schools, McFatter offers a television production curriculum that usually take 17-20 months for students McFatter Broadcast Pix Useto complete. Each weekday, adult students spend five hours at the facility, plus complete an hour of online coursework. High school students spend three hours at the facility during the McFatter Broadcast Pix Useafternoon. Students who complete the program earn a Certificate of Completion from the state.

The television production facility is housed next to BECON, the School Board of Broward County’s educational broadcast station. Students often assist with productions at BECON. In turn, BECON will sometimes produce programming in McFatter’s three-camera studio using the Granite and with McFatter students in the crew. “This is definitely a hands-on approach,” said Frank J. Boulton, lead television production instructor.

The new Granite 6000 represents a significant upgrade from the facility’s aging Intergroup analog switcher and QuantaFont CG. It was installed in late April by Pro Sound, a systems integrator with offices in Florida and California. Boulton said Broadcast Pix’s integrated approach, including the Fluent-View customizable multi-view, made it a very cost effective choice for upgrading the facility. “I like the fact that everything is there,” Boulton said. “This is the best way to go.”

McFatter still has a dedicated tape operator area outside the main control room with DVCAM tape decks, but the Granite’s built-in, dual channel clip store is being used to play commercial breaks during drills. “It’s a lot easier than tapes,” Boulton explained, “and that’s what they’re going to use out there.”

The built-in Inscriber CG has helped unlock creativity in many of Boulton’s students. Many of them have experience with other graphics programs, so they quickly understand the workspace. “They’re producing some amazing graphics,” he added.

The facility also features five dedicated Final Cut Pro/Adobe Premiere Pro edit suites, as well as a classroom with more than two dozen 27-inch iMac computers with Final Cut Pro and Adobe Premiere NLE software. Boulton hopes to use Watch Folders, Broadcast Pix’s built-in content management system, in the future to deliver completed projects directly to the Granite over the school’s network.

Although there was a learning curve for students and faculty alike, mastering the basics on the Granite proved relatively simple. “Students transitioned fairly easily,” said Boulton, who has worked in film and video production for more than 44 years. “I was not used to using a server-based switcher. I thought it was going to be harder.”

About Broadcast Pix Founded in 2002, Broadcast Pix is the leader in integrated production switchers, with customers in more than 110 countries. Available in several configurations, from compact systems with end-to-end integration to large-scale systems for high-end live productions, Broadcast Pix switchers include CG, dual clip stores, file-based macros, external control software, and customizable multi-view and virtual sets with patented control options. Broadcast Pix also offers ReVue next generation slow motion systems, fX3D real-time 3D graphics, Rapid CG dynamic graphic playout software, and VOX voice-automated live video production, each designed to enhance our highly integrated live production switchers. Customers include leading broadcast, corporate, education, government, religious, sports, streaming, and visual radio studios. Learn more at www.broadcastpix.com.

Broadcast Pix, Granite, and Rapid CG are trademarks of Broadcast Pix, Inc. Patented. Made in USA.

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Broadcast Pix Partners with Sportzcast to Link Rapid CG Graphics with Scoreboards

Billerica, Massachusetts – Broadcast Pix™ today announced a new partnership with Sportzcast, a sports automation company based in Winter Springs, Fla., to deliver real-time scoreboard data to Broadcast Pix integrated production switchers with the optional Rapid CG™ 3 graphics software for dynamic graphics during live sporting events.

With its Scorebot hardware, which is integrated with the scoreboard at the venue, and LiveXML software, which is a plug-in installed in the Broadcast Pix system, OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERASportzcast Rapid CGretrieves clock and score data, sends it to the cloud, and provides it in a standardized format to licensed users during productions. LiveXML software creates a dynamic .XML file in a standardized format, so data can be easily incorporated into graphics without manual data entry.

“We provide live, real-time scoring data from scoreboards to broadcasters,” explained Sportzcast’s Mike Connell. “That information has to be accurate for the home audience. Our solution provides a very streamlined way for Broadcast Pix customers to get that enhanced data into their broadcast workflows.”

“Live sports production is a year-round commitment for many network affiliates and public access channels across the country,” said Steve Ellis, CEO of Broadcast Pix. “The combination of our Rapid CG with Sportzcast’s automated scoreboard data solution makes it easy and affordable for stations to create dynamic sports graphics with significantly less effort.”

Designed to support data-intensive CG graphics for Flint™, Mica™, and Granite™ integrated production switchers, Rapid CG is an ideal choice for sports and election coverage. Its simple drag-and-drop operation links graphics templates created with the built-in Inscriber CG to local and cloud-based databases, RSS feeds, Twitter, and custom actions like scorekeeping. Text and/or graphic information is automatically updated in specific fields within the template, so there is no re-keying of data. Broadcast Pix offers the dual-channel Rapid CG 3 and the “light” Rapid CG LT, but the Sportzcast integration only works with Rapid CG 3.

About Sportzcast Founded in 2012, Sportzcast provides live, real-time scoreboard data from more than 70 scoreboard systems. This “cloud” data is delivered for scoreboard “bugs,” edit play points, scoring applications, and custom integration. Learn more at www.sportzcast.net.

About Broadcast Pix Founded in 2002, Broadcast Pix is the leader in integrated production switchers, with customers in more than 110 countries. Available in several configurations, from compact systems with end-to-end integration to large-scale systems for high-end live productions, Broadcast Pix switchers include CG, dual clip stores, file-based macros, external control software, and customizable multi-view and virtual sets with patented control options. Broadcast Pix also offers ReVue next generation slow motion systems, fX3D real-time 3D graphics, Rapid CG dynamic graphic playout software, and VOX voice-automated live video production, each designed to enhance our highly integrated live production switchers. Customers include leading broadcast, corporate, education, government, religious, sports, streaming, and visual radio studios. Learn more at www.broadcastpix.com.

Broadcast Pix, Flint, Granite, Mica, and Rapid CG are trademarks of Broadcast Pix, Inc. Patented. Made in USA.

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Cinematographer Timur Civan Relies on Lightweight FUJINON Cabrio Lens for High-End Productions

Wayne, N.J. – As a Director of Photography and producer with a degree in studio art and previous career as a sculptor, Timur Civan takes pride in telling an artistic story through his camera work. His production company Tstop Cinema LLC focuses on high-end commercial and feature film work, ranging from fashion and technology projects, to cooking, and Sesame Street promos. Over the last few years, one piece of equipment Timur has relied upon is the FUJINON PL 19-90mm Cabrio lens Timur Civan Cabrio Use-1(ZK4.7×19.) Timur Civan Cabrio Use-1Most recently, he used it to shoot a commercial for FILA sneakers and commercials for the Home Shopping Network (HSN).

When FUJIFILM Optical Devices introduced the Cabrio 19-90 T2.9 lens in 2012, Timur was one of its first customers. “I’d just sold my previous lens because it was expensive and was not renting well, and was in the market for a new one,” he explained. “At first I just thought that the Cabrio would be a good rental item, which it definitely is. What I didn’t expect was its high optical quality. Zoom lenses with such a long focal range can sometimes lack in image quality. But in this case, FUJIFILM did an amazing job with its image quality. The optics on the lens are just beautiful.”

Offering the longest focal range available in a lightweight zoom, Timur Civan Cabrio Use-2the FUJINON 19-90 Cabrio weighs in at only 2.85kg, including its Timur Civan Cabrio Use-2servo motors. Its compactness is something that Timur particularly appreciates. One feature that Timur is surprised he finds so valuable is the detachable servo drive. The exclusive detachable servo drive unit makes the lens suitable for use as a standard PL lens or as an ENG-Style lens. For a recent Home Shopping Network (HSN) fall fashion commercial, Timur relied exclusively on his FUJINON 19-90 lens mounted on a RED EPIC DRAGON camera for the nearly 15 hours of footage he shot.

“We were able to shoot through a variety of setups in the day using only the Cabrio. It saved us a lot of time and energy.”
On another recent shoot, this time a nighttime production for FILA’s TMNT Crossover Shoe, Timur again shot with the FUJINON Cabrio lens on a RED EPIC DRAGON. “The FUJINON lens covers 6K on the RED camera, so it produced full sharpness and breadth at the center. The lens is still sharp, even at the edges of the frame, with no soft corners. The Cabrio has a certain clarity that’s hard to explain.”

Citing the FUJINON Premier Series 18-85mm T2.0 zooms as his all-time favorite lens, Timur describes it on his website as “legendary” and “practically a miracle of modern optics.”

About Fujifilm
FUJIFILM North America Corporation, a marketing subsidiary of FUJIFILM Holdings America Corporation consists of four operating divisions and one subsidiary company. The Imaging Division provides consumer and commercial photographic products and services, including: photographic paper; digital printing equipment, along with service and support; personalized photo products; film; and one-time-use cameras; and also markets motion picture archival film and on-set color management solutions to the motion picture, broadcast and production industries. The Electronic Imaging Division markets consumer digital cameras, and the Graphic Systems Division supplies products and services to the graphic printing industry. The Optical Devices Division provides optical lenses for the broadcast, cinematography, closed circuit television, videography and industrial markets, and also markets binoculars.
FUJIFILM Canada Inc. sells and markets a range of Fujifilm products and services in Canada. For more information, please visit www.fujifilmusa.com/northamerica, go to www.twitter.com/fujifilmus to follow Fujifilm on Twitter, or go to www.facebook.com/FujifilmNorthAmerica to Like Fujifilm on Facebook. To receive news and information direct from Fujifilm via RSS, subscribe at www.fujifilmusa.com/rss.

FUJIFILM Holdings Corporation, Tokyo, Japan brings continuous innovation and leading-edge products to a broad spectrum of industries, including: healthcare, with medical systems, pharmaceuticals and cosmetics; graphic systems; highly functional materials, such as flat panel display materials; optical devices, such as broadcast and cinema lenses; digital imaging; and document products. These are based on a vast portfolio of chemical, mechanical, optical, electronic, software and production technologies. In the year ended March 31, 2014, the company had global revenues of $23.9 billion, at an exchange rate of 102 yen to the dollar. Fujifilm is committed to environmental stewardship and good corporate citizenship. For more information, please visit: www.fujifilmholdings.com.

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Audio/Visual Firm Emergency Production Purchases FOR-A HVS-100 Portable Video Switcher

Cypress, CA – FOR-A America announces that Rhode Island-based event production and rental company Emergency Production recently purchased its HVS-100 portable video switcher. As the preferred labor provider for a number of New England’s premier events, Emergency Production has begun to rely on the HVS-100 in its video production, and is very happy with the switcher’s performance.

“A number of things led us to purchasing the HVS-100 switcher,” explained Chris Hubbard, owner of Emergency Production. “First and foremost, the switcher has proven that it’s highly reliable. We were also impressed with the HVS-100’s ability to Emergency Emergency Productions Switcher Use-1Productions Switcher Use-1 run multiple AUX controllers, operate native in both 1080p and 23.98PsF, which are client requested video format specifications, and its ability to assign ‘anything to anything’ with the outputs.”

The biggest project that Emergency Production has used FOR-A’s HVS-100 for thus far incorporated a five-camera chain running in 23.98PsF to achieve a film look, and was recorded on 14 decks with video fed to a presentation switcher for live image magnification. The event was simulcast live in three languages. Emergency Production found the HVS-100 AUX controllers running sub-switches to be an essential part of its video production.

Hubbard explained, “We’re extremely happy to have added this system into our inventory. After many demos and testing, in the end, purchasing the HVS-100 was a simple choice for us.”

Since its introduction into the market last year, FOR-A’s HVS-100/110 video switcher series has proven to be a popular fit for a wide range of applications. Boasting exceptional cost performance, the HVS-110 features an integrated main unit and control panel, while the HVS-100 switcher comes standard with a separate main unit and control panel. Both switchers offer diverse functions and features, including a frame synchronizer, multi-viewer capability, re-sizing engine, 2.5D wipe effects, dedicated bus buttons, AUX buttons, a fader controller, and DVE and keyer with chroma key. The HVS-100’s control panel design leverages the knowledge of expert operators, making it an ideal fit for Emergency Production’s production staff.

“We’ve relied on numerous FOR-A equipment in the past, and we’ve never had a negative experience. Plain and simple, FOR-A’s solutions are workhorses,” added Hubbard.

About FOR-A
FOR-A is a major manufacturer and distributor of video and audio systems to the broadcast, postproduction and professional video markets. For more information about FOR-A’s product line, call 714-894-3311 or visit our web site at www.for-a.com.

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Bangkok University Relies on FOR-A’s VRCAM2 Virtual Studio System for Student Training

Tokyo, Japan – FOR-A Company Limited announces that Bangkok University’s School of Communication Arts has been using its VRCAM2 virtual studio system. First installed in January 2011, the school frequently uses FOR-A’s sensor-less virtual studio system to train its students in program production, and the technology is also utilized for production of school events. Bangkok University also purchased FOR-A’s HVS-Bangkok U VRCAM2-3390HS video switcher in December of 2013, and purchased another unit last November.

Powered by Brainstorm’s software technology, the VRCAM2 provides the school with a virtual studio using a one-man-operated, no-cameraman environment. As Bangkok University prides itself onBangkok U VRCAM2-3 having a high-quality range of broadcast equipment available to its students, operation of the VRCAM2 has been included in the school’s curriculum for courses on set design and newscast production since 2013. The university is now also offering a new course specifically for virtual studio system technology for television production.

“Our communication students benefit so much from having frequent access to VRCAM2 and Brainstorm technology,” said Mr. Ath Kupongsak, Instructor of Virtual Studio Systems for TV Production at Bangkok University. “They enjoy studying virtual set techniques, Bangkok U VRCAM2-4which I think is evident by the high enrollment in our new virtual technology-focused course. We rely on our FOR-A VRCAM2 often and are happy with the features and functions that it offers.”

VRCAM2 includes expanded camera positions, sensored cameras, and a host of Bangkok U VRCAM2-4other useful additional control functions and effects for program production. The system allows for up to four virtual cameras, each of which can be set with up to 32 different angles. It also allows for one-touch operation, enabling students to save their work, including camera switching, subtitles, and scene transitions as playlists.

About FOR-A
FOR-A is a major manufacturer and distributor of video and audio systems to the broadcast, postproduction and professional video markets. For more information about FOR-A’s product line, visit our web site at www.for-a.co.jp

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JVC to Showcase 4KCAM Product Line at CES 2015

WAYNE, NJ – JVC Professional Video, a division of JVCKENWOOD USA Corporation, is demonstrating the GY-LS300 and GY-HM200, two of its new 4KCAM camcorders, in the JVCKENWOOD booth (1711) at the 2015 International CES, which runs Jan. 6-9 in Las Vegas, Nev.

“With its Super 35 sensor, the new GY-LS300 marks JVC’s official entry into the large imager camera market,” said Dave Walton, assistant vice president of GY-LS300 marketing communications. GY-HM200“Plus, we’ve also introduced the GY-HM200, which is our most affordable streaming camcorder, and it’s loaded with professional features for ENG and commercial production.”

The GY-LS300 offers a variety of native recording formats including 4K Ultra HD, Full HD with 4:2:2 sampling, SD, and Web-friendly proxy formats to non-proprietary SDHC and SDXC media cards. It features JVC’s 4K Super 35mm CMOS sensor combined with an industry standard Micro Four Thirds (MFT) lens mount. JVC’s unique Variable Scan Mapping technology maintains the native angle of view for a variety of lenses, including Super35, MFT, and Super16. As a result, lens options for the camera are almost limitless.

“Lenses are a crucial part of image capture, and an image sensor works the best with the specific type of lens designed for that sensor,” explained Edgar Shane, general manager of engineering, JVC Professional Products. “Only the GY-LS300 electronically adapts the active area of its Super 35 CMOS sensor to also accommodate MFT, Super 16, and other lenses, which connect to our MFT lens mount with third-party adapters. The GY-LS300’s Variable Scan Mapping is unique in the industry and gives filmmakers unprecedented flexibility.”

With an outstanding combination of professional features and performance, the GY-HM200versatile GY-HM200 is ideal for any assignment. It delivers 4K Ultra HD, 4:2:2 Full HD (50Mbps), and SD imagery with a 1/2.3-inch BSI CMOS chip. Its built-in 12x zoom lens with optical image stabilizer also offers 24x dynamic zoom in HD mode.

Both the GY-HM200 and GY-LS300 include a built-in HD streaming engine with Wi-Fi and 4G LTE connectivity for live HD transmission directly to hardware decoders, Ustream, Wowza Streaming Engine, and the ProHD Broadcaster server powered by Zixi. With support for several streaming protocols including RTMP, the cameras can stream instantly to Ustream or other destinations while simultaneously recording to SDHC/SDXC media cards. Zixi’s Advanced Streaming Technology (AST) provides content-aware error correction and bandwidth shaping, while JVC’s Streamconfidence delivers real-time feedback of LTE and streaming status in the viewfinder.

The camcorders also feature a 3.5-inch LCD display and 1.56 megapixel color viewfinder, dual XLR audio inputs that are mic/line switchable and feature built-in phantom power, an integrated handle with hot shoe and dedicated microphone mount, and SDI and HDMI video outputs. The GY-HM200 has an MSRP of $2,995 and will be available in February, while the GY-LS300 has an MSRP of $4,450 and will be available in March.

ABOUT JVC PROFESSIONAL VIDEO
Headquartered in Wayne, New Jersey, JVC Professional Video is a division of JVCKENWOOD USA Corporation, a wholly-owned subsidiary of JVC KENWOOD Corporation. The company is a leading manufacturer and distributor of broadcast and professional video and audio equipment, D-ILA front projection systems, and Super LoLux HD video security products. For further product information, visit JVC’s Web site at http://pro.jvc.com or call (800) 582-5825.

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PESA Xstream C22 Compact Streaming System Receives NewBay Media Product Innovation Award

Huntsville, Alabama – PESA, a leading designer and manufacturer of streaming solutions as well as professional audio and video distribution products, today announced its PESA Xstream C22 compact streaming system has been recognized with NewBay Media’s second annual Product Innovation Award. The latest addition to the PESA Xstream family of multi-channel HD IP streaming devices, the C22 can be configured as a two port video encoder or two port decoder – or it can include one of each and be paired to allow bi-directional live interaction between sites.

“We are very proud to receive this honor from NewBay Media for what we think is a cost effective solution for a number of markets,” PESA XSTREAM Awardsaid John T. Wright, PESA senior PESA XSTREAM Awardvice president of sales and business development. “The PESA XStream C22 is very versatile because it can be used as a standalone streaming appliance or it can share content between facilities.”

The C22 includes HDMI, coax and Ethernet (IP-based camera) video inputs, and optional SFP modules allow multiple configurations (fiber, HD-BNC, A-to-D and more) for expanded connectivity. During an event, two external audio sources can be synchronized to either or both video streams. Plus, video signals can be locked to an external source using built-in frame sync for glitch-free video switching in broadcast and pro AV applications. An integrated Web server provides full remote control, so no personnel are required on site for streaming content to another facility.

Launched in 2013, NewBay Media’s Product Innovation Award recognizes excellence in the manufacturing of products to serve the broadcast television/pro video and radio/online audio industries. Winners are selected by a panel of professional users; evaluation criteria include innovation of concept and design, creative use of technology, price value, and suitability for use in a broadcast television/pro video and broadcast/online radio environment.

About PESA
As a leading provider of audio/video (A/V) Baseband and IP connectivity products, PESA offers a wide selection of multi-path streaming products, routing switchers, matrix switchers, extenders, converters, media extenders, and signal processing gear to support government, military, industrial, commercial, medical, broadcast, and mobile truck applications. From large to small-scale A/V routing and extender products to multiple IP streaming appliances, PESA offers a diverse suite of AV products, all of which are supported by 24/7 technical support. PESA is located in Huntsville, Ala., with regional sales offices throughout North America and China. Our cost effective solutions are available around the world through our industry leading team of Channel Partners offering local support and installation. All products mentioned herein are trademarked property. Learn more about us at www.pesa.com. Follow us on Twitter: @PESA_ONLINE.

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Crew Boston Lights ‘Antiques Roadshow’ Field Segments with Zylight F8 LED Fresnel

LOS ANGELES – In the field, there are few “normal” lighting setups – the only constants for the EFP crew of Antiques Roadshow, the popular PBS series produced by member station WGBH in Boston, are different locations and tight shooting schedules. Between May and August, the Antiques Roadshow crew shot in eight different cities across the country for the show’s 19th season, which will begin airing in January 2015.

Each episode features a field segment with host Mark L. Walberg, who visits a site in the event city with one of the show’s appraisers to learn about specific items. For the season, that amounts to 24 different locations, each one a new lighting challenge that requires a highly flexible and mobile lighting package.

Bob Birkett from Crew Boston Video Production Services has been Crew Boston F8 Useshooting for Crew Boston F8 UseAntiques Roadshow since its debut in 1997. As director of field videography, he and the WGBH EFP crew record the field segments as well as the show’s open and close with the host.

This season’s travels took Birkett’s crew to the stage of the Apollo Theater in New York City, a coal mine in Charleston, W.V., an international balloon museum in Albuquerque, N.M., and the historic Sloss Furnaces in Birmingham, Ala. Some setups were interiors, others were exteriors. All were shot with Crew Boston’s Panasonic AJ-HDX900 DVCPRO HD camcorder – and this season, Birkett added a Zylight F8 LED Fresnel to his lighting kit.

Birkett said the Zylight F8 is incredibly versatile. “Museum curators prefer that you not put a hot light near a valuable and often light sensitive work of art,” he explained. “The staff at the Austin State Museum, for example, were very concerned about how we would light their very delicate Texas Declaration of Independence. We showed them the dimmed down and cool Zylight and eased their concerns.”

For years, Birkett has been using Zylight’s Z90 compact LED light on location as a backlight and on-camera light. The palm-sized Z90 offers variable color temperature with no color shift while dimming, and its built-in color mode provides immediate access to millions of colors without gels or filters.

“The Z90 is not just an on-camera light,” he said. “It has such flexibility of color choices, and its low power draw means you can run it a long time on battery. I will often grab the Z90 when I need a splash of color in the background. A segment we shot at the Rickenbacker guitar factory is a good example – the wall of guitars was washed in deep blue with one Z90.”

Birkett opted for the daylight-balanced F8 and uses the F8 Filter Kit to warm the output. He said unlike LED light panels with multiple light sources, the F8 provides better control over the quality and texture of the light. The fully dimmable F8 features an eight-inch SCHOTT glass lens to maintain single shadow traditional Fresnel beam shaping, as well as an adjustable beam spread (16-70 degrees) and patented focusing system for spot and flood operations.

In contrast to HMI lights, the F8 is much more portable, Birkett added. For Antiques Roadshow, the battery-powered F8 came in handy for several setups, including Walberg’s tour through a coal mine (in a mine cart) and a horseback ride in a pasture in Austin, Texas. Birkett said he also used the F8 for quick stand-ups with the host when no external power was available.

“It’s definitely a part of my go-to lighting package,” Birkett added. “I like it because of the Fresnel lens and its ability to be dimmed. The variable intensity makes it ideal for lighting backgrounds for interviews.”

Birkett is an independent contractor and does not represent Antiques Roadshow or WGBH.

ABOUT ZYLIGHT LLC
Founded in 2003, Zylight LLC is the leading manufacturer of intelligent LED lighting instruments for the film and video production industry. Every model in its easy-to-use lighting system produces fully calibrated bright white light, while some also provide a spectrum of adjustable colors without gels. Full wireless control and DMX integration are included, and AC or DC power options are available. The Zylight state-of-the-art LED system is truly the most unique and flexible lighting system on the market today. With more than 50 dealers worldwide, Zylight continues to develop innovative LED lighting solutions to help make your job easier. More Than Bright – Zylight. Find out more at www.zylight.com.

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KAZT-TV Upgrades to HD Production in Two Cities with Broadcast Pix

Billerica, Massachusetts – KAZT-TV, an independent station serving Arizona’s Phoenix/Prescott market (DMA #11), produces The Morning Scramble, a unique live morning show that produces the first 30 minutes from its Phoenix studio and the last 30 minutes from its Prescott location. In October, the station upgraded both of its facilities to HD production, and anchored both control rooms with Broadcast Pix™ Granite™ X integrated production switchers.

While KAZT had upgraded its master control to HD in 2008, its studios were still producing programming in SD. While planning a move to HD production, station personnel discovered Broadcast Pix at the NAB Show. “The time was right to go KAZT Granite UseHD,” said Brian Cisek, production manager, “but we had not found the KAZT Granite Useright mix of equipment to do it in an economical way with all the bells and whistles we wanted.”

Phil Hammon, chief engineer, handled the integration of the new equipment and the station’s concurrent move to a file-based workflow. He determined that Granite “just seemed to be a lot more ‘live TV’ friendly” than competing systems. “There’s a lot I like about the Broadcast Pix in general,” he added. “From an engineering perspective, redundancy is extremely important – and the Broadcast Pix is one of the better built systems on the market, from its dual power supplies to its fail safe mode.”

Each control room was rebuilt and re-cabled in about 10 days – Phoenix was completed in mid-October and Prescott two weeks later. (During installation, The Morning Scramble was produced in only one city.) For the HD upgrade, the station purchased the same equipment for both control rooms. The Broadcast Pix systems were purchased through BKW, Inc., a value added reseller based in Tempe, Ariz. Additional upgrades included new JVC ProHD studio cameras, AJA Ki Pro record decks, 40-inch NEC LCD monitors for the control room video walls. The station is owned by Londen Media Group, LLC.

Designed for large-scale productions, Granite X supports 22 inputs and seven channels of files, and can integrate cloud-based content from Skype, Twitter, and other online sources during a live production. The Granites replaced an aging Ross analog switcher in Prescott and a Ross digital switcher in Phoenix. “File sharing at some point became a little difficult,” Cisek recalled. “Now, everything is consistent – they almost work as one studio. It’s just seamless.”

Using the built-in Watch Folders content management system, KAZT can transfer media from edit suites and other sources directly to the Granite before or during a production. “It’s really easy the way it just shows up and you just pull it into your show,” Cisek explained.

Fluent-View, Granite’s built-in customizable multi-view, was one of the system’s biggest selling points for the KAZT production team. The station produces The Morning Scramble and a weekly political program in Phoenix, and each series has a unique multi-view setup that can be tailored for individual technical directors. “That was the ‘wow’ factor,” Cisek said. “The flexibility of that was just awesome.”

KAZT has retired its aging Deko systems and now uses the Granite’s built-in Inscriber CG. Cisek said it delivers clean graphics and allows them to easily make changes during productions. The built-in clip store has also streamlined roll-ins, and Broadcast Pix’s file-based macros system, Fluent Macros, has simplified satellite interviews. TDs can set the screen for two-box and three-box displays with preselected backgrounds with just one button push.

The station welcomes outside production clients, but with SD studios, too many potential clients were going elsewhere. Now, Cisek said the station is starting to build a client base. “We knew that there was revenue to be made with our HD studio,” he said.

Hammon and Cisek are very happy with KAZT’s HD upgrade, particularly the Granites. “In a lot of ways, we’ve only cracked the surface of what the system can do – and that represents what maxed out our old system,” Cisek added. “Overall, we really enjoy the system. It’s going to give us a lot more flexibility.”

About Broadcast Pix Founded in 2002, Broadcast Pix is the leader in integrated production switchers, with customers in more than 110 countries. Available in several configurations, from compact systems with end-to-end integration to large-scale systems for high-end live productions, Broadcast Pix switchers include CG, dual clip stores, file-based macros, external control software, and customizable multi-view and virtual sets with patented control options. Broadcast Pix also offers ReVue next generation slow motion systems, fX3D real-time 3D graphics, Rapid CG dynamic graphic playout software, and VOX voice-automated live video production, each designed to enhance our highly integrated live production switchers. Customers include leading broadcast, corporate, education, government, religious, sports, streaming, and visual radio studios. Learn more at www.broadcastpix.com.

Broadcast Pix and Granite are trademarks of Broadcast Pix, Inc. Patented. Made in USA.

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