Soho-based post house Rainbow Post has purchased a Sony SRW-5500 HDCAM SR deck to help with its ever-increasing HD workload. The new VTR can handle full 1080i, 1080p and 720p high definition video playback and recording at a variety of framerates, and offers up to 12 channels of 24-bit audio, allowing the creation of programmes with 5.1 surround sound.
"We've been handling post production of HD projects regularly for a few years, already have DVCPro HD and HDV decks, and have rented HDCAM SR hardware as required until now," said Rainbow Post MD,Nick Rogers, "but our HD workload now merits the full purchase of an HDCAM-SR deck."
Various format-conversion options are available for the SRW-5500, and Rainbow's deck is fully expanded, allowing it to convert programme material freely between 1280 x 720 and 1920 x 1080 resolutions for maximum compatibility with their clients' requirements. The machine room at Rainbow already features a Snell & Wilcox UKON universal format converter to handle the conversion of video from HD to SD (and vice versa, subject to the quality restrictions inherent in SD), from one framerate to another (including 23.98fps) without changing the overall duration of programme material, and to create 'letterbox' versions of 16:9 anamorphic programme material, making Rainbow a one-stop shop for projects in all formats and frame rates in use internationally.
In addition, Rainbow's well-equipped machine room can deliver mastered programme material in a wide range of physical formats, including HDCAM SR, HDCAM, DVCPro HD and DigiBeta.
Thorough Quality Control of all programming is carried out before projects are completed, both by passing material through a Videotek VTM-440 Rasterizer, and also by eye.
"There's a lot of kit around nowadays that will alert you if there's a problem with an image, or if sound levels are too high, and of course we make use of that," explained Rogers, "but ultimately, there's no substitute for an engineer sitting down and watching the master through with an experienced eye!"