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New Black Magic Design Product Line Announced

  • Posted By Andrew Zarian
  • April 16, 2012

It's NAB 2012 time, and we have some exciting new products!

This year we have designed some of the most exciting products in our history, and I also think we have taken design to a new level of elegance.

We have an amazing new digital cinema camera, a completely reworked DaVinci Resolve, two new Teranex standards converters, a new HyperDeck Studio model with 4K, new battery converters and software updates to add powerful new features to ATEM and HyperDeck Studio!

New products include:

Blackmagic Cinema Camera

We have been thinking hard about cameras and some of the limitations in quality that video cameras run into. Working with DaVinci color grading has only made these limitations more noticeable.

Some of the reasons why video cameras look like "video" is because they have limited contrast range, are limited to HD resolutions, use heavy compression for file recording, have poor quality lenses and of course they don't integrate into NLE software with metadata management.

We decided to address these problems by developing a camera that provides feature film quality in an extremely compact portable design.

The Blackmagic Cinema Camera includes a super wide 13 stops of dynamic range, large 2.5K sensor, integrated SSD recorder that has the bandwidth to capture CinemaDNG RAW, ProRes and DNxHD files, integrated capacitive touchscreen LCD for direct metadata entry, standard jack audio connectors, refrigerated sensor and it's fully compatible with EF and ZF mount lenses.

The Blackmagic Cinema Camera also includes SDI and Thunderbolt connectors and it comes with a full copy of DaVinci Resolve and UltraScope software. Imagine plugging in your laptop for on set grading and scopes!

The 13 stops of dynamic range is one of the most important reasons why this camera looks like film. Often people focus on more pixels, but that is just a larger video image. The real way to get film quality is to capture a wide contrast range to retain more detail in the black and white levels of the image. Then once you color grade the images, it looks amazing! Combined with amazing EF and ZF lenses, the result is a true film look!

Of course the quality is killed if you compress the images when recording them, so we built in an SSD recorder. That means you get the recording speed you need to record the full 2.5K RAW sensor data into completely uncompressed CinemaDNG files. This means you get all the detail and quality of the sensor.

No files on this camera are custom in any way and this is the first camera that’s designed to make the whole post production process simple. It records into CinemaDNG format for RAW files, and DNxHD or ProRes for HD resolution files compatible with Avid Media Composer and Apple Final Cut Pro.

You can play back all recorded files on the LCD, and there is a built-in microphone and speaker for reviewing audio. Of course you will want to plug in high quality audio into the standard jack connectors and the audio is always recorded uncompressed for highest quality.

The integrated LCD has a touchscreen and when tapped, a window called the "slate" appears where you can type in shot information just like typing on a smartphone. This is then recorded into the file as metadata in the Final Cut Pro X and DaVinci Resolve format. Common data like shot number can auto increment to save time.

You can also change camera settings on this touch LCD, such as frame rate, shutter angle, color temperature, dynamic range, focus assist settings and more. The SDI output also has overlays showing you all the camera data when monitoring on set, and even the same data when playing back recorded files!

The design is machined from a solid block of aluminum and looks amazing. It’s strong, very compact and designed to be easily hand held. I am still amazed we have fitted all this into such a small design, when normally features like RAW recorders and monitoring can be optional extras on cinema cameras.

A cinematographer friend of ours, John Brawley, has been working with the camera for the last few weeks. He's shot some test clips in the process of working out what the camera’s capabilities are and we have posted them online for your to see. Even though some of them are just hand held test shots near John’s house, they are still great to see as examples of what’s creatively possible. Remember to select HD when viewing them!

We expect to start shipping in volume in July for $2,995.

DaVinci Resolve 9

We have worked very hard on DaVinci and the new DaVinci Resolve 9 features a completely redesigned user interface. Over the last few years we have been busy adding more camera and file type support plus powerful features, however we thought it was time to rethink the user interface to make it much faster to use.

The new user interface has been designed to be extremely fast to use and to eliminate any unnecessary clicks and settings to get working fast. You can now get a job running in three clicks, one to log in, one to drop media into the project, and the next to grade! It's really amazing and it's hard to describe so you really need to see it!

Even though DaVinci is used on more feature films than any other color correction system, plus has more powerful features than any other solution, we did not want to get complacent. I think this new user interface is vital to DaVinci Resolve’s future. It is now a true, modern, multi-platform tool. It’s just as powerful, but also nicer to use.

We hope everyone really likes the attention to detail in the new interface and we think it's also one of the best looking software tools. Thousands of hours of engineering have been put into it, and if you’re heading to NAB, please stop by the booth to check out the interface and add your comments and suggestions!

DaVinci Resolve 9 will ship in July as a free update for all users on Mac, Windows and Linux, and will also be available as the free Resolve Lite model.

Teranex 2D and 3D Processors

As you might know, we recently purchased a high end standards converter company called Teranex. Their specialty is developing extremely high quality image processing for standards conversion and format conversion. They have also world leading technology for 3D processing and simulation.

Teranex processors are mandated by many broadcast networks and Hollywood studios for transferring masters to other video standards for international markets, and their quality is truly amazing. While the processing is great, the problem is the existing VC100 processor model is very large, expensive to build and the fans were very noisy!

We have new models that include the same Teranex quality and address these problems. There are two models: a single processor model for regular conversions, and a dual processor model that adds 3D processing and 4:4:4 quality.

Both models are 1 rack unit in size, but dramatically shorter at 6 inches for the 2D model 8 inches for the 3D model. They all include 3 Gb/s SDI, HDMI and analog video in and out, with independent 8 channel AES/EBU and 4 channel analog audio. Both models have new whisper quiet fans.

These new models still feature the same processing features at the same quality, including up conversion, down conversion, SD/HD cross conversion, SD/HD standards conversion, cadence detect and remove, noise reduction, adjustable scaling, aspect ratio conversion, smart aspect, timecode conversion, subtitle conversion, 16 channel audio, test signals and more. The Teranex 3D Processor model includes all this as well as 4:4:4 dual link quality, plus 3D camera align, 3D dual stream standards conversion and incredibly realistic 3D simulation.

However we did not want to stop there. We realized that if we combined our Thunderbolt technology for capture and playback with Teranex, the result would be a processor with computer capture built in that works as the world’s most advanced video capture card!

These new models feature a Thunderbolt port, as well as reference and deck control so you can use them in the same way as our UltraStudio series of capture and playback products. The 3D model will even capture and play back 2 video files for dual stream 3D! Both models even include UltraScope software so you can use the Thunderbolt port for integrated waveform monitoring and error logging. It’s like three products in one!

We also have a wonderful new design with a solid machined aluminum front panel with a bright new LCD display that features upgraded menus that look much nicer and are easy to read. The whole front panel is much sharper looking and very elegant. The power supply is built in, and the 3D model features dual redundant power supplies.

The Teranex 2D Processor will retail for US$1,995 and be available in June, while the Teranex 3D Processor model will retail for US$3,995 and be available in July.

ProRes Software Update for HyperDeck Studio

If you have a HyperDeck Studio you will be happy to hear we have just released a new update that adds Apple ProRes codec support for recording and playback. You can download this software and select between 10 bit uncompressed, Avid DNxHD and now Apple ProRes. This makes HyperDeck Studio a deck that records in the format of your NLE software no matter what software you prefer.

You can then mount the disk on your computer desktop and edit direct from the disk. The ProRes quality is great, and on a 512 GB SSD, you can get over 5 hours of recording. It’s really amazing.

This software is free of charge and you can download it now from our support page.

HyperDeck Studio Pro

Our HyperDeck Studio has been very popular and it has some fantastic features such as SDI and HDMI based recording and playback in uncompressed, and compressed ProRes and DNxHD, using common low cost solid state disks (SSD). You can get hours of recording time on a disk that only costs a few hundred dollars, and with dual slots, recording can keep going to a second disk when the first one fills.

We now have a new enhanced model this year that adds even more powerful features! It includes all the features of the regular HyperDeck Studio as well as analog video and audio in and out, XLR connectors for analog audio and timecode, 4 channels of 3 Gb/s SDI in and out, and an integrated Thunderbolt port. There is also a built-in power supply so you don't need an external power adapter on this model.

The new model includes faster internal processing and can play back 4K via the 4 SDI video channels out from a single high resolution ProRes file. It’s amazing to see and the quality is incredible. We think this will be perfect for driving digital signage.

With 4 channels of SDI, we are also going offer a software update to add 4 channel capture and playback using 4 independent ProRes QuickTime files after the model has been released. This will allow HyperDeck Studio Pro to be the perfect camera recorder for ATEM switchers!

With Thunderbolt technology built in, HyperDeck Studio Pro can also capture and play back to computers just like an UltraStudio desktop video solution, and it also includes UltraScope so you can add a computer for scopes direct to the deck!

This is a very exciting model and will ship in July for US$1,995.

UltraStudio Express

With so many of our products including Thunderbolt technology, we also wanted to design a compact and portable capture and playback product that’s powered from the Thunderbolt connector and has the flexibility to bridge between consumer and professional connectors.

We have achieved that with the new UltraStudio Express and it’s Thunderbolt powered so is more portable because it will power from your computer’s battery. It also includes two breakout cables. One with RCA connectors allows capture and playback with consumer equipment, and the professional breakout cable includes BNC and XLR connectors plus genlock and deck control for connection to professional equipment.

It is fully compatible with all popular software including Final Cut Pro X, Final Cut Pro 7, Adobe Premiere Pro CS6, Avid Media Composer 6, Adobe After Effects CS6, Adobe Photoshop CS6 and more plus it includes our Media Express software.

You get all the latest technology including 3 Gb/s SDI, HDMI and analog video in and out, and it's also designed from solid machined aluminum so it's very attractive. UltraStudio Express is also much lower cost.

UltraStudio Express will be available in May for US$495

Battery Converters

We have two exciting new converters this year, that extend the range of converters for use in live events. Our ATEM Camera Converter, introduced last year, has been very popular, however because it uses optical fiber, it’s not as easy to use for small switcher setups with HDMI cameras.

These new battery converters solve that problem as the Battery Converter HDMI to SDI model is perfect for converting consumer cameras or computers to SDI for extending camera cables. The Battery Converter SDI to HDMI is perfect for connecting to televisions and monitors for monitoring around live events.

Both converters will run for hours on the internal battery, and they include the heavy duty machined aluminum design so they are rugged for live event use. They also include the latest technology such as 3 Gb/s SDI and even convert 1080PsF to P for better HDMI compatibility.

Battery Converter SDI to HDMI and Battery Converter HDMI to SDI will be available this month for US$295.

Universal Videohub Editing Interface

One of the problems in building a facility is the cabling, and with Universal Videohub Editing Interface we hope to eliminate some of that cabling as we are building the UltraStudio capture and playback into the router itself!

The Universal Videohub Editing Interface is a plug-in card for our Universal Videohub routers that includes 4 independent Thunderbolt connector based capture and playback devices in one! It includes 4 Thunderbolt connectors and 4 independent reference connectors so each interface can run a completely different video format.

This means instead of purchasing independent video capture and playback products for each computer, you can just plug in the one editing interface card and the SDI video connectors are connected directly through the router backplane.

This is only made possible by the new long optical fiber Thunderbolt cables coming onto the market to allow lengths up to 30 meters or 98 feet. That’s a long distance, and makes it possible to run a single Thunderbolt cable from each computer direct to the router. It’s also perfect for broadcasters who want to stream multiple formats.

Each interface is fully compatible with all popular software including Final Cut Pro X, Final Cut Pro 7, Adobe Premiere Pro CS6, Avid Media Composer 6, Adobe After Effects CS6, Adobe Photoshop CS6 and more plus it includes our Media Express software.

Universal Videohub Editing Interface will be available June for US$1,195.

Desktop Video 9.5 Software Update

This new software update adds support for Adobe CS6 and includes a new WDM driver in the Windows version of this update.

Our update for Adobe Creative Suite 6 includes support for Adobe Mercury Transmit which is a new plugin design for Adobe Premiere Pro CS6 and allows for any format and codec with more real time and more video formats. It’s very exciting and is included in this update for all DeckLink, UltraStudio and Intensity models of capture and playback products.

We also support Adobe Encore via the same plug-in so you get hardware video output when authoring DVD and Blu-ray disks.

The new WDM driver on Windows allows wider support for more software! Desktop Video 9.5 lets all DeckLink, UltraStudio and Intensity products work directly with CyberLink PowerDirector, Corel VideoStudio X5, Nero Video 11, Magix Movie Edit Pro, VLC, AMCap, ArcSoft ShowBiz and many more. WDM drivers are also great for developers as it's a more future proof technology, and it's faster and more efficient as well.

Desktop Video 9.5 Software will be available for download free of charge in early May.

New ATEM 2 M/E Switcher Audio Mixer Software

This new software update adds a built-in audio mixer into the ATEM 2 M/E Production Switcher that lets you mix audio from all audio SDI/HDMI inputs, plus the media players and the external audio input. This is then output on all SDI and HDMI outputs of the ATEM switcher.

A built-in audio mixer means you can take camera audio and mix it without using an external audio mixer, so it’s lower cost, much simpler and allows for a more portable solution. It allows level and balance control for each camera, and you can set audio to follow video or do a direct mix.

Audio-follow-video allows audio to crossfade when the inputs change, while direct mix allows an input to be permanently mixed into the program output independent of the current active input. It’s very easy to use, and we have added an Audio tab to the ATEM Software Control panel.

This new update, to add the audio mixer to the ATEM 2 M/E Production Switcher, will be available later this month free of charge.

New Low Price for Heavy Duty Mini Converters!

We have new lower prices in our Mini Converter Heavy Duty range of converters. Now that we are able to keep up with demand, we have been working hard to reduce the price of these wonderful machined aluminum converters that are both attractive and extremely strong.

The old price was $395 and now we’ve reduced it to $345. I love these converters as they feature really advanced technology but are so beautiful and strong! It’s the best combination possible!

New Lower Prices for Videohub Routers

Lastly we have also reduced prices on our Videohub all in one routers. From today, the 16 x 16 size Micro Videohub SDI router will be $1,495, the 16 x 16 size Smart Videohub SDI router with built in control panel will be $1995, and the 40 x 40 size Compact Videohub SDI router will be $3995. We think these new lower prices will make routers even more affordable.

That's all for this update, and if you're coming to NAB 2012 in Las Vegas, then please drop by for a visit, and pick up a copy of our latest catalog!

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