Steadicam has recognized the consumerization of what is considered professional videography by releasing their $150 Steadicam Smoothie. These come with specialized mounts, weighted and balanced for the Hero HD… The iPhone… and the iPad. There were several other manufacturers offering similar rigs for these devices, but this one felt like the “real deal” and was actually less expensive than some of the alternatives.
If you are a fan of Duke’s Office Hours, you know that they have been incorporating Twitter feeds into their productions for some time now. Their process is fairly manual so we’ve been looking for alternatives. Chyron announced their Twitter integration package this week called Shout. For a one time license fee, you can bring in twitter feeds and then display them with animation as if they were any other graphic element. More importantly, they allow you to moderate both the content of the tweets and the pictures associated with the twitter accounts before they go on air.
There was a lot of flying around in the North hall . With the miniaturization of high quality cameras such as the GoPro, several ingenious companies have released small remote control helicopters, planes and yes, even a blimp to hold these small cameras and allow you to record video from above in areas that may have been previously inaccessible. While they do cost several thousand dollars, it is a breakthrough in videography that used to be only available to cameras on full size helicopters. Depending on the size camera, these can cost from just a few hundred dollars to several thousand.
The Roland V-800HD is a multi-format video switcher that features 3G, HD and SDI SDI input as well as many different types of standard definition video inputs at a cost of around $13,000. It also features a built in multi viewer, MIDI control and built in scalers and keyers and a USB port for bringing in still graphics.
Even though Vidyo is generally thought of for their proprietary video conferencing technologies, I’m glad I checked out their booth and their VidyoCast software. This software has the potential of making the incorporation of remote guests into programs such as Office Hours much more effective as it seems like it will eliminate the need for the remote user to install any software as the remote user’s software is completely web based).
It also allows you to see the remote user’s audio and video settings to make troubleshooting easier. It provides a mix minus (audio and/or video) to the guest to eliminate confusion and feedback and can even provide compositing of multiple remote participants into a graphically rich scene. This is all at a fairly substantial cost, but it looks impressive.
For more information, you can contact:
Creative Media Products
Chapel Hill, NC
Google Voice: 919 766-0154
Roland always has interesting stuff at the show. This year they were showing their new $2000 portable production station the VR-3 that functioned as a video and audio mixer with cool touch screen interface that converted the output to standard USB so it can feed any USB compatible app such a Ustream.tv, Adobe Media Encoder, or other live stream or recording tools. Granted this is standard definition but for streaming, it provides some great remote production capabilities in a small and inexpensive package.
There was a good deal of discussion on the Duke Digital Media Community list serve about using music with our various video projects. Fair use may not be applicable to non-academic uses so I got some information about various music libraries… and there a lot of them. Almost all of them were VERY interested in speaking with us about a Duke wide side license which would essentially allow us to use a library of music royalty free, for non-commercial use. I’ve gathered the information on the companies I’ve spoken with below. If this is something that is of further interest to the community, I’d be happy to help organize a group to research in a library for use at Duke. Since music is so subjective, I can imagine this will be a challenging process.
I even through one company that can do sound effects too.
The Q-Ball from Camera Corps, LTD in England can create custom HD PTZ cameras for any applications. They always have a really fun booth. The cameras are of good quality and feature a 10x zoom with 1/3″ 2mpixel CMOS sensor.
Sampson’s Meteor Mic has one of the largest condenser diaphragms (25mm) of any USB mic available. Its cardioid pickup pattern, smooth frequency response and 16-bit, 44.1/48kHz resolution give you professional audio results no matter what you’re recording. Meteor Mic’s chrome-plated body includes a fold-back leg design that adjust to the optimal position for any recording application from acoustic guitars to vocals or speech. It also contains a stereo 1/8-inch headphone output for no latency monitoring and headphone volume knob as well as a microphone mute switch for privacy while video conferencing. There’s an integrated a mic stand adapter into the bottom so you can mount on a boom or desktop stand.
The Meteor Mic can plug right into your iPad with Apple’s USB connector.
The Zoom H2n features four unique recording modes: Mid-Side (MS) stereo, 90° X/Y stereo, 2-channel and 4-channel surround sound. The H2n is the first handheld recorder to offer Mid-Side stereo recording, a technique used for many years in film and broadcast, where ambiance and surrounding noise are crucial. Mid-Side recording combines a uni-directional Mid mic that captures sound directly in front of you and a bi-directional Side mic that captures sound from your left and right. By increasing or decreasing the level of the Side mic, you can control the width of the stereo field, which gives you incredible flexibility over your recordings. If you record in RAW mode, you can even adjust the stereo width after recording.
The onboard 90° X/Y stereo condenser mics are arranged with the right and left mics on the same axis. This design ensures that the mics are always equidistant from the sound source for perfect localization and no phase shifting. The result is brilliant stereo recording with natural depth and accurate imaging.
Using the H2n’s Mid-Side and X/Y mics together, you can create stunning 360° surround sound recordings. Choose between 2-channel mode, which combines the Mid-Side and X/Y mics, and 4-channel mode, which records two separate stereo files, allowing you even more post-production capability. No matter which mode you use, you’ll get perfectly balanced, surround sound recordings.
The H2n also functions, including Auto-Gain, a compressor/limiter, time stamping and a new data recovery function. Whether you experience battery loss or an accidental power-down, this feature will automatically restore your data the next time the H2n is powered on.
The H2n provides over 20 hours of continuous operation on just two standard AA alkaline batteries. The built-in reference speaker lets you know your recordings have been captured. With its 1/8-inch stereo output, you can also playback your recordings on your home audio system or listen to your masterpiece using your favorite pair of headphones.
The H2n can accommodate up to a 32GB SDHC card for over 50 hours of recording time using the 16-bit/44.1kHz WAV format. With 128kbps MP3 format, you get an incredible 555 hours of stereo recording. The H2n comes with a 2GB SD card to get you started.
The Sampson Go Mic is a portable recording microphone that clips to your laptop or sit on your desk. It features a switchable cardioid and omni polar patterns and is compatible with Mac or PC.
American ingenuity at it’s best, the Padcaster. Why? Because they can, that’s why. Check out the video about the device and then check out the website for some sample footage. Pretty crazy stuff.