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Entertainment Technology Expo 2013: Wrap Up

Expo Was Wellspring of New Product Debuts and Upgrade Announcements

The Entertainment Technology Expo of 2013 was filled with a variety of training opportunities, including time lapse tutorials as well as formal discussions of the 4K revolution.  It was also home to some surprising new announcements from the likes of Canon and Blackmagic Design.  If that wasn't enough, there were other manufacturers on hand with cost effective 4K Displays, Thunderbolt storage solutions and even new lens solutions.  

Here is just some of what we saw:

Paul McAniff on Canon's upcoming C100 upgrade

Canon USA

Canon made a groundbreaking announcement at ETE 2013.  It wasn't a new camera, but the opportunity to upgrade the C100 to include the new dual pixel sensor which enables the camera to take advantage of the auto focus feature popular in their new EOS 70D.  Essentially, for $500, you can now send in your C100, and Canon will replace the sensor.  This is particularly good news if you shoot news, ENG and especially sports.  To find out more, go to the Canon website usa.canon.com

Marshall USA's Bernie Keach discusses their QVW-2710 Quad-Viewer Monitor's 4K signal capabilities.

The QVW-2710 in action

Marshall Electronics

The QVW-2710 has four independent 3G-SDI inputs to enable users to view four channels at once in a quad view mode. Additionally the QV-2710 can accept an HD, 2K or 4K signal using one or more of the 3G inputs.  The QVW-2710 Quad-Viewer Monitor features an all-digital TFT-MegaPixel active matrix LCD system with 2560 x1440 (QHD) native resolution at 10bit picture depth and Ultra-wide gamut.  This monitor is great for field production, works well in the video village, a control room confidence monitor, a post production monitor for color grading and a master control monitor for critical evaluation of output.  Although it doesn't have a Thunderbolt input, when paired with an AJA Io XT, the monitor should work well with the new MacPro.  This monitor allows you to cycle through the quadrants of the image for critical focus and color.  The QVW-2710 is covered by a 2 year warranty and is available through a variety of dealers.  

For more information on the new QVW-2710 or all of the other great products from Marshall Electronics, go to their website at:  www.lcdracks.com


Carl Zeiss' new Otus is said to be the “…best standard camera lens Zeiss has ever made”.

Carl Zeiss

Rich Schleuning of Zeiss showed me a new lens they recently released which is the first in a series of lenses they call Otus.  Otus is the new family name for a series of high performance still lenses they will sell in addition to their already existing lenses.  Per Schleuning, this lens is the result of three years of intense development in response to a trend in the industry of higher resolution camera sensors with higher pixel density.  When this starts to happen, it begins to put a high demand on optics especially at the frame edges.  The Otus line promises to be the best performing lenses at 1.4 so the shooter can maximize the creative possibilities of shooting in low light without any compromises in image performance.  Schleuning continues to explain that all of the constraints the company tend put on their designers in regards to weight or size or even cost were eliminated so the designers would have the freedom to create the best lens possible.  The lens is definetly larger when compared to Zeiss's other lenses of the same spec.  Instead of the seven lens elements in six groups, the Otus has twelve lens elements in ten groups.  The Otus is also an apochromatic lens meaning all of the red, green and blue light rays are all focused on the same point insuring it against color fringing and insuring constant contrast across the frame edge.  Based on their internal testing, Schleuning states it's the best standard camera lens Zeiss has ever made.  The next lens in the line will be 1.4/85 with a variety of wide angle lenses to follow.  Once they have at least three focal lengths, they will start exploring an incarnation of the Otus for video.  People can start using this for video applications today, but it is only one focal length.  

To find out more information about the Otus and all of the other great lenses from Carl Zeiss, go to their website at:  lenses.zeiss.com

Blackmagic Design's Kendall Eckman with the Blackmagic Cinema Camera

Blackmagic Design

No matter what event you attend, be it trade show or training seminar, if Blackmagic Design is there, you'll see a consistent group of the curious gathered around and ETE 2013 is no exception.  Kendall Eckman of Blackmagic was on hand along with the Blackmagic Cinema Camera as well as the Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera, but it was the announcement of DaVinici Resolve 10 which dominated the conversation.  Announced the second day of ETE 2013, Davinci Resolve 10's new features allow you to use multiple users on the same project as well as importing timelines from not only Final Cut Pro but also Adobe Premiere as well.  Other new features include multi track editing with unlimited video and audio tracks. Audio can be synced or trimmed and dragged independently to the timeline. Other new editing features include extensive ripple, roll, slide and slip clip trimming support.   DaVinci's viewer now provides a split screen display to show in and out points of adjacent clips.

You can read more about the extensive changes DaVinci Resolve 10 brings to the table in Blackmagic Design’s press release below, as well as on their website at www.blackmagicdesign.com/products/davinciresolve

The LEDZ Brute 9 from CineMills projects a rectangular beam at 5500°K.

The Brute 9's on board dimmer


The LEDZ BRUTE 9® system is a series of lights that can be mounted onto a C-Stand via a yoke system.  The BRUTE 9 uses a digital on-board dimmer which is most commonly seen on larger 1×1 LED lights.  The unit casts a rectangular beam with a temperature of approximately 5500°K.  

To find out more about Cinemills line of LED lighting or all of their products, go to their website at cinemills.com


Eddie Barber, Emmy Award Winner and creator of the Steddiepod


Eddie Barber, owner and CEO of Barbertech, absolutely loves what he does, and it shows.  Especially when he's talking about the Barbertech Steddiepod, which is a multitude of production tools in one device.  First the Steddiepod works as a handheld camera stabilizer which has a learning curve of about twenty seconds and can instantly achieve smooth, stable, handheld shots.  It works as a body brace and can also be used as a monopod with a fluid head.  It also works as a camera boom.  It can perform low angle shots, putting the camera eye level with a child, dog or even a cat.  With additional accessories from Barbertech, you can use it as a car bar, dolly and even a slider.  Although I didn't get a full demo of all the different jobs the Steddiepod can do, I did get a chance a chance to take it for a test run around the ETE Show Floor, and I can tell you the device just floats in your hand.  Learning to turn took a little finesse, but I was able to do it successfully in less than a minute.  There is no counter balance weights required as the three legged base is sufficient to balance most cameras six pounds or lighter, and proper balance is achieved through adjusting the swivel handle from one end to the other.  Once you have the Steddiepod properly configured, you can essentially perform any move and it just floats.  It's a great device, and if you're just entering into shooting and don't have much support gear or you're tired of having so many devices, the Steddiepod from Barbertech is a great tool to simplify your workflow.  

For more information about the Steddiepod or any of it's accessories, go to the Barbertech website at www.barbertech.com

Zylight President Joe Arnao and their F8 Fernel Light


Joe Arnao, president of Zylight, took some time to show off his Zylight F8 Fernel light.  The light uses a bellow component to extend and retract the lens.  Once extended, the light becomes rigid allowing you to put gel holders and barn doors on it without affecting its performance.  The F8 uses Zylight's Zylink™ remote.  A little smaller than the average computer mouse, the Zylink puts DMX control in the palm of your hand. With the Zylink, you can wirelessly control all of the functions of your Zylight from one little device.  For the F8 you can control the brightness, but for Zylights which have color functionality, you can control it as well.  You can also plug the Zylink into your lighting control board and command any Zylight wirelessly.

For more information on the Zylight F8 or any of the other products from Zylight, go to their website at zylight.com

Azden's laest wireless UHF reciever, the 330UPR


I'm familiar with many of the products from Azden including their line of wireless UHF products, but I wasn't familiar with the their latest UHF receiver the 330UPR, dual channel, camera-mounted receiver.  Azden's own Lewis Gerr was good enough to explain its features.  The 330UPR allows you to have two microphone inputs going into one receiver.  If you have say a lavaliere and a handheld microphone, normally this would require two receivers which can become a bit cumbersome for one camera.  The unit takes the place of two receivers and provides a tidy solution and is only slightly larger than a cigarette pack.  Once you've mated up your two wireless devices, one single stereo cable is all you need to accommodate your two devices.  Azden packs either a mini stereo to mini stereo cable and a mini stereo cable to dual 3 pin XLR cable.  As with all of the Azden UHF products, there are 188 User-Selectable frequencies displayed on an LCD screen to make it fast and easy to find a free channel.  The 330UPR comes in three configurations with two body pack transmitters with lavaliere microphones, one body pack transmitter with lavaliere and one handheld transmitter or a body pack/lav with a plug in transmitter which allows you to turn any XLR microphone into a wireless microphone.  

For more information about the Azden 330UPR Dual Channel, Camera-Mounted Receiver or any of the other products from Azden, go to their website at www.azdencorp.com

Akitio's external storage solutions have been honed while working with the likes of Apple and Intel


You may not be familiar with the name Akitio, but they've been manufacturing products for Apple, Intel and several other companies for years.  Chances are you probably using one of their products right now.  Akitio provides external storage solutions.  Most of their products are sold bundled together with drives with a focus on SSDs.  Why SSDs?  As Richard Wright explains, if you're using Thunderbolt, you primarily have to use SSD technology to get the full benefit of the speed.  If you're using a regular spinning drive, you're limited by the speed of the drive.  Akitio boasts the fastest Thunderbolt speeds of any product on the market with a max read speed of 770 megabytes per second and 596mb write speed .  Akitio also has the highest capacity, bus powered solutions.  Many companies peak out at 256gb, but Akitio has a 512gb device.  All of their products are certified by both Apple and Intel which is required for all certified Thunderbolt devices.  Wright revealed that Intel was actually a co-developer of Thunderbolt technology along with Apple, and now that we are on the cusp of Apple releasing the new MacPro with multiple Thunderbolt ports, Intel is pushing the various PC manufacturers to use the technology, with HP being the first.  Akitio does make two enclosures without the drives, one is the Thunder Duo and the other is the Thunder D3.  This allows people to use whatever drive they choose.  One should note, with these two products you'll be limited by the speed of the drives, so if you're using SATA drives you'll get the top speed of the drive.  If you want to take advantage of the speed of Thunderbolt technology, you'll need to use solid state drives.  

If you're like most people and have multiple external drives including everything from Firewire to ESATA, Akitio has a device they call the Thunderdock which will not only allow you to extend the life of these drives but also maximize their speed.  Of course, you cannot exceed the speed of the device, but you can make sure there won't be any decrease in speed.  

For more information about all of the products by Akitio, go to their website at www.akitio.com

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