NAB News: RAI Television is to install Hitachi HD cameras in an upgrade of its digital studios and facilities throughout Italy. By completion of the project, RAI will take delivery of more than 150 Hitachi SK-HD1000 studio and EFP cameras, writes David Fox.
The Italian state-owned public service broadcaster selected Hitachi after conducting extensive trials of HD studio cameras, and chose Hitachi cameras because of their high quality, efficiency and price performance, and ability to integrate using fibre and triax as well as via wireless. More than 150 camera chains will be used as RAI upgrades its studio and OB operations to HD.
“We are honoured to be selected as partner to RAI, and are delighted to have been awarded this contract with the tremendous efforts of our Italian representative, CVE, which will provide comprehensive technical support from its offices in Milan and Rome. The competition to meet RAI’s advanced specifications was intense and we look forward to successfully delivering leading-edge camera systems, based on the latest proven technological developments in HD,” said Masahiko Kato, GM of Hitachi Kokusai’s Global Business Division.
The Hitachi SK-HD models are flexible dockable HDTV cameras that allow multiple configurations thanks to their fibre optic, digital triax cable, and wireless transmission adapters. The SK-HD range offers the choice of native 1080i or 720p CCD options, can be fitted with a full studio adapter that enables the use of both hanger-type and bayonet-type lenses without removing the camera from the adapter, and has an easy-to-use camera control unit.
Four new cameras at NAB
At NAB, Hitachi introduced four new HD cameras. Three of the cameras are based on 3Gbps technology (the SK-HD2200 studio camera pictured left, SK-HD1200 handheld companion, and DK-HD200 PoV box-camera), while the fourth, the SK-HD2000, is a studio-body version of the SK-HD1000.
The 3Gbps technology cameras use new 1080/60p native-scan 2/3-inch, Ultra-Advanced Interline CCDs for accurate colour reproduction and high picture detail. They have 30-bit 175MHz RGB processing, bi-directional fully progressive transmission and HD-SDI multi-format camera outputs.
The new UAIT CCDs are claimed to deliver “the highest exposure latitude and most accurate depth-of-modulation curves that have ever been achieved with a television camera”. The digital fibre transmission can be used with a single 3Gbps camera or with two 1080i cameras. This reduces the required fibre cable and ensures full compatibility with 3D systems that currently use L/R Hitachi 1080i PoV box cameras. Several aux and prompter channels can be sent to the camera head and provide trunk data in any format to and from the CCU.
The new Hitachi CCUs were designed specifically for 3Gbps use and provide multi-format outputs for any worldwide HD standard.
The 3Gbps cameras, as well as existing 1080i models, can be used with the recently announced Multidyne EOS-4000 optical routing system. Together with a standard PC, this allows a large number of cameras to be connected to CCUs in multiple studios or production facilities, providing optimum workflow flexibility.
The DK-HD200 can be used with two SM fibre interfaces that can transport 3Gbps HD-SDI SMPTE-424M video distances in excess of 3km.
The studio-body SK-HD2000 was developed to meet customers’ requests for a camera that could avoid the storage and logistic complications of a sled-configured system. It shares video quality, specifications, accessories and functionality of the existing SK-HD1000, with a build-up adapter, the SA-1000.
A digital wireless transmission system, compatible with the new cameras, is being demonstrated within Hitachi’s NAB booth, along with a new series of economically priced, bi-directional digital microwave links slated for the Americas market. A P2- recorder back to create a fully integrated HD P2 system (pictured left) is also on display, together with external HD recording systems from Maxell and Cinedeck.