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In other news: automated data, batteries and more

Automation helps promote safe data capture on set; batteries rack up charges; Tally Ho phantom power; and 3D remote convergence.

Safe capture with automated data management

Band Pro Film & Digital has signed an exclusive sales agreement with Marvin Technologies to sell its automated data management systems in Germany, Switzerland, Austria and the US.

Marvin is already being used in the field on an 80-day shoot for the Dutch miniseries Lijn 32. It automates the creation of backups, LTO tape masters, QuickTime proxies for offline editing, and DVD dailies, in a single step. It is claimed to be “a fraction of the cost of competing data recorders,” and provides data security and all of the production formats required for digital cinematography.

“This year we have been taking a good, hard look at the direction our industry is going,” said Amnon Band, president of Band Pro. “With the growing use of data cameras, like RED and SI-2K, data management is becoming as important as the camera used to capture it. Marvin is a natural result of this transition and is perhaps the simplest, most elegant solution available.”

Marvin supports the RED ONE, Silicon Imaging SI-2K, Arri D21/Alexa, Panasonic P2, Phantom and Weisscam HS-2 cameras. The system is housed in a 4U housing with a padded case and controlled through a simple browser GUI running on a laptop computer connected via Ethernet.

After entering the settings for a new project, Marvin automates the rest of the process, saving hours of manual data wrangling and effectively eliminating the risk of human error. When removable media from the camera is attached to the system, Marvin creates verified copies of every shot to its own internal RAID5 storage array. The system then generates multiple verified LTO copies of all of the shots from the day, along with DVD dailies and QuickTime files for offline editing.

“New technology demands new tools, and Marvin is the data management solution that many Red owners and data camera-based productions have been waiting for,” added Gerhard Baier, Managing Director of Band Pro Munich.

Budget broadcast battery gets new mount

PAG has introduced a new version of its lower-cost broadcast battery, the PAG L95e, and a rack-mountable version of its latest high-power, simultaneous Cube charger (pictured).

The 95 Watt-hour Li-Ion L95e is a 14.8v 6.5Ah battery with a maximum continuous output current of seven amps. It has been designed as a low-cost replacement for the Anton/Bauer Dionic 90, so can be charged using any Anton/Bauer Li-Ion compatible charger.

PAG claims that the 760g L95e has “a better quality to price ratio than any other battery in this market” and guarantees the battery for 18 months. It features an electronic protection circuit that is itself protected from the results of damage to the cell pack. It has a five-LED capacity indicator display that will also provide an estimate of remaining camera run-time. As its capacity is below 100Whr, there is no restriction on the number of PAG L95e batteries that can be transported by air in hand luggage. The battery is also available in V-Mount and PAGlok formats.

The 1U high, half-width rack version of the Cube will simultaneously fast-charge Li-Ion batteries manufactured by PAG, Sony or IDX, via four V-Mount or PAGlok battery mounts that connect to the charger via its four XLR-4 outputs.

The four-channel charger features PAG’s Intelligent Parallel Charging software, which uses current efficiently for fast, fully automatic charging. The charger can supply approximately 100W (6 amps at 16.8v).

Phantom power for video + wireless Tally

Brick House Video‘s new TallyHo! is a wireless on-air indicator that offers camera users reliable remote on-air indication in the field. Its base station has a direct interface to the local vision mixer and a set of camera hot shoe-mounted receiver modules, which give the operator and presenter a visible indication of on-air status.

TallyHo! can be adapted to work with almost any vision mixer, although it has been initially matched to Brick House Video’s Callisto vision mixers and the Sony Anycast system.

“TallyHo! provides a reasonably-priced alternative to more complex and expensive systems,” explained Brick House MD, Julian Hiorns. “It stands alone in its ability to furnish wireless feedback to cameras; essential information that every operator in the field needs, but couldn’t access economically prior to TallyHo!”

Also new is Video Ghost, a phantom power module for use with both analogue and digital video feeds. It provides a nominal 12-volt auxiliary power for camera accessories using the existing video cable. Under certain conditions it can work up to 200m. For example, the system can be used to power a composite to SDI converter at the camera, thus avoiding the significant signal degradation suffered by composite video over such a length.

“Video Ghost is the video equivalent of phantom power for audio systems,” said Hiorns. “We developed it to provide a set of affordable phantom power modules for use with both analogue and digital video feeds.”

3D convergence remote for AG-3DA1

The German accessories maker, Bebob, has developed a new remote controller to control the convergence setting on Panasonic’s forthcoming AG-3DA1 integrated 3D camcorder.

The copa-3D is similar to a thumb-operated zoom or focus controller, and can be plugged direct into the camcorder and attached to the tripod panning arm, dolly or crane, up to a distance of 20m. It costs €499.