HyperDeck Studio Mini, Revised ATEM HD Switcher, and Streamlined Cameras for Broadcasters and Video Bloggers
The YouTube generation of content creators is maturing, Blackmagic Design CEO Grant Petty said in a live streaming announcement of new products aimed in large part at making life easier for webcasters.
The new gear includes the HyperDeck Studio Mini, which Petty described a "miniaturized broadcast deck," a revamped ATEM Television Studio HD switcher, and the Blackmagic Web Presenter, which turns the HDMI or SDI feed from any camera into a 720p stream. Also new are revisions to the company's studio cameras that bring the prices down and make them lighter and more friendly as streaming sources with talkback and tally support.
Blackmagic Design CEO Grant Petty
"Web broadcasting is the biggest change in the broadcast industry since color TV," Petty said in a press briefing debuting the new products that streamed over YouTube. "With YouTube Live, you can open up a global broadcast channel that goes to all kinds of devices. That's a huge thing, and it's going to be a major part of the TV industry."
HyperDeck Studio Mini
The HyperDeck Studio Mini is the size of a Teranex Mini. Petty said it's designed to be used on a desktop, hidden behind a monitor, or rackmounted (it takes up just one third of a single 1RU space). It supports ProRes record and playback (10-bit YUV or 10-bit RGB) on SD cards at up to 2160p30. (A Blackmagic spokesperson told StudioDaily that DNxHD is not currently available but "is being worked on" for a future update.)
It supports remote control via ethernet as well as FTP for uploading files. Dual-link 6G-SDI outputs will allow a ProRes 4444 file with alpha-channel to play out both fill and key signals, making it easy to do real-time composites in an ATEM switcher, which can also control the device. At $695, Petty noted, it's less expensive than the existing 1RU HyperDeck Studio ($995), which supports a maximum resolution of 1080p30.
ATEM Television Studio HD
Next up is the ATEM Television Studio HD, a revision of the company's existing ATEM Television Studio live production switcher. While the previous version topped out at six cameras connected, the new model supports up to eight cameras — or, the company notes, game consoles or computer sources — connected via any combination of the unit's four SDI inputs and four HDMI inputs (all with resync).
The unit's SDI inputs and ouputs all support talkback audio with the option to turn on "mix minus," meaning the corresponding input is subtracted from the program output so that an interview subject won't hear their own audio channel coming back to them as an echo when they're trying to speak.
"It really does operate from the front panel," Petty said, noting that the LCD display allows complete control of all of the switcher's features and can be used to check audio levels on all sources. A serial port is included for control of PTZ cameras, and the GVG100 control protocol is also supported. It is shipping now for $995, the same price as the previous model.
One big difference between the ATEM Television Studio and its predecessor is that the new model no longer includes H.264 support on board. "Removing that cost allowed us to make a much better switcher," Petty said, "and then you decide if you want a streaming solution or not."
Naturally, Blackmagic wants to help you with that, too. That's where the new Blackmagic Web Presenter comes in. It's a small, $495 device that turns any camera — actually, any SDI or HDMI source — into a USB webcam.
Blackmagic Web Presenter
Built around bog-standard UVC and UAC driver technology, the box can pull in a signal at up to 2160p60 over 12G-SDI and change it to a standard streaming resolution of 720p using Blackmagic's Teranex downconversion technology. The idea is that an extremely high-quality camera, when fed through this box, behaves exaclty like a standard webcam as far as your streaming software is concerned. That means the final stream will look as good as it possibly can, given the usual streaming bandwidth constraints.
The Web Presenter can be paired with a Teranex Mini Smart Panel ($85) to provide an on-screen video preview, audio meters, and other details.
Blackmagic Studio Camera 4K
Finally, the company's studio cameras have been revised to bring prices down. The Blackmagic Studio Camera HD ($1495) costs $200 less than its predecessor, and the 12G-SDI Blackmagic Studio Camera 4K ($1695) sees an $800 price drop. Both cameras now come without a battery, as live production users generally have access to AC power; it wasn't clear from Blackmagic's announcement what other changes allowed the more dramatic price drop for the 4K version. "Obviously we've done more than just the battery to reduce $800," Petty said, "but we've been really working hard on this and we really hope this makes some big savings for people and lets them use cameras with professional talkback, tally and control features."
Both cameras are basically plug-and-play with ATEM switchers, which offer full camera control, Petty noted.
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