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Datavideo unveils mobile production unit

A new, low-cost modular production unit that can be used as a flyaway or be quickly fitted in a van was unveiled by Datavideo at BVE in London last week. The MS-3000 Portable Production Unit will cost from about £12,000-13,000 for a full, turnkey system.

A new, low-cost modular production unit that can be used as a flyaway or be quickly fitted in a van was unveiled by Datavideo at BVE in London last week. The MS-3000 Portable Production Unit will cost from about £12,000-13,000 for a full, turnkey system. It sold the first one at BVE for live events production with eight cameras, and the system will be available as a completely customisable package, including free fitting of equipment a buyer already has, according to Allan Leonhardsen (pictured), sales and marketing director of Holdan, the Datavideo distributor, which will assemble the unit at its UK facility. The PPU is based around the SE-3000 8- or 16-channel 2M/E broadcast vision mixer (which costs from about £9,000 and has full 3D effects, transitions, picture-in-picture and sophisticated keying, including chromakey effects), and will almost certainly include talkback, hard disk recorders, vectorscope and waveform monitors, and power distribution sensors. It is designed to be easy to install in a small van or temporary studio. As a single cased unit, running on caster wheels, it can be rolled into place to provide instant television and AV facilities – anywhere. “We want it to be that you turn up, plug it in, and be live in seconds,” explained Leonhardsen. “We’re not using systems like embedded computers that take a long time to boot up. We want to make sure that if you lose power, you are back on line in five to ten seconds, maximum. It’s very much aimed at the live market, or anyone who wants stability.” Holdan hopes to create set configurations, to make it easy for customers to specify and check price points, and was talking to prospective users at BVE to find out what they’d need in such a package (one item being coffee cup holders – so users are less likely to spill drinks on it), but he expects that almost everyone will want to choose their own configuration. As it will be created from a kit of modules, it will be possible to keep prices low despite the customisation. “We can create integrated solutions but we don’t believe in it,” he added. “We don’t want it to happen that one item goes down and the whole system goes down, which is why we are using independent modules. We believe in stability and non-embedded functionality, so that independent items do independent jobs. If a hard disk recorder goes down, you can simply replace it rather than sending the whole thing back.” Although Datavideo manufactures all the items, customers won’t have to specify them and can have a unit from another manufacturer fitted instead. At BVE it showed a flyaway-style configuration with two 17-inch LED HD monitors, the SE-3000 switcher, dual-screen vectorscope test devices, a 16-way intercom, audio mixer and hard disk recorders. Units for live encoding, realtime graphics or additional media playout facilities can simply be inserted into the rack enclosure. Power for the PPU is supplied by a Datavideo central distribution system, which operates from 110-260v. This can have power outlets on the back for the cameras, tally, talkback and prompter (through a single multicore cable), and can be fitted with up to three redundant power supplies. For use in a van, it has a system that clicks into the normal seating rail system, so that a people carrier can be turned into an OB van (and back) in about ten minutes – it has already used this system for a few vans in Europe and the Far East, which Leonhardsen sees as being ideal where an OB van is only needed occasionally, or to allow the system to be moved between studio and OB use. Studio in a briefcase Also new at BVE was the Datavideo HS-2800 portable integrated production studio. The briefcase-style HD production switcher can be up and running on location in a matter of minutes, and has eight digital inputs, a built-in multiview video monitor and 10-bit video support. It supports multi-camera shoots, blending video sources, audio feeds, logos and graphics, and is designed for small-scale live production, or AV use for events or corporate production. “With HD-SD conversion, downstream keying and dual picture-in-picture functionality, producers can deliver very polished TV for multiple audiences,” said Leonhardsen. Features include high-quality digital video effects, multiple XLR inputs, a 17.3-inch monitor to display input sources, programme preview and the live programme, and an eight-way intercom system complete with headsets and tally lights. David Fox