As today was the beginning of the second half of NAB, my wandering of the aisles took a more varied route, leading me to three of the four halls covering production, AV, and post, racking me up a respectable 12,734 steps today as I sat down at the computer to type tonight. Here is the most interesting technology I saw.
AVID Media Composer First
As Blackmagic Design shook up the world of nonlinear editing software by making a full-featured version of Resolve free, Avid has decided to jump on the free app bandwagon. While Avid is aiming Media Composer First at high schoolers, hobbyists and film students, there are only a few strategic differences and limitations between it and the full Media Composer. The limitations are four tracks of video with eight tracks of audio, a limited number of bins, and — while it can import and edit 4K footage — a 1080 60p export limit. Its multicamera mode is also limited to four cameras. It can be used with most hardware and plug-ins (like Boris Continuum Complete) that work with Media Composer. The program and media reside on your computer, not the cloud. Projects edited in Media Composer First can be opened in the full Media Composer, as long as the licenses are registered to the same people. You can’t send the projects back the other way though. This totally free version will be available this coming June.
Decimator Design MD-LX
This dual channel bi-directional HDMI/HD-SDI converter and distribution amp. The unit can auto sense what input is being used and rout the signal to both outputs. It is capable of handling all video signals from SD up to 1080 60p. It can be configured different ways, and firmware can be upgraded via USB. This sort of device will be welcome in the AV industry, where whenever an HDMI/HD-SDI converter is needed, you always seem to have the wrong one. The MD-LX does both, so you always have the correct one. With an MSRP of $99, I’m sure I will be seeing a lot of these in future AV set-ups.
AJA Ki Pro Ultra Plus
This new version of the Ki can record one stream of 4K or 1080 60p in Apple ProRes and Avid DNxHD MXF codecs or four simultaneous streams of 1080 60p HD in Apple ProRes only. All four channels can be displayed on Ki Pro Ultra Plus’s LCD screen as a quad-split during capture for confidence monitoring, as well as the ability to output the quad-split over HDMI, SDI and even on the integrated browser-based web UI during capture. Ki Protect technology ensures that in the event of power failure or inadvertent withdrawal of a Pak Drive, recently recorded footage is always secure. MSRP $3995
Dell UP3218K (8K monitor)
This stunningly sharp 7680×4320 resolution monitor is meant for users who need the highest possible resolution for editing or imaging. Feeding a single signal over DisplayPort 4.1 can do 8K 30p. Using dual 4.1 DisplayPort signals, you can display 8K 60p. While it is not HDR, it still had a gorgeous picture. MSRP $5000.
This is a touch display meant to replace a mouse for applications that require precision touch, such as animation, special effects and photo editing. You see the image you are working on, on both the computer screen and the large touch screen. This allows the artist to be more precise than working on an awkward touch screen that is standing up or a smaller laptop that may be too small. MSRP $1799
G-Speed Shuttle XL
These two portable and configurable RAID enclosures (one six and one eight bays) are extremely fast, at up to 1500 MB/s for the eight-bay and 1300 MB/s for the six-bay, through dual Thunderbolt 3 ports. Users can choose to populate the bays with HDDs or SSDs or fast media readers for media such as RED Mags, CFast Cards and others. MSRP starts at $2799.95 for the six-bay version and $3499.95 for eight bays.
Manfrotto Nitrotech N8 Video Head
This new tripod head uses a new nitrogen piston mechanism that guarantees continuous counterbalance during use. The counterbalance control knob is large and easily adjustable. You won’t confuse it for another control in the heat of a hectic shoot. Variable pan-and-tilt fluidity, easy link connector with anti-rotation to support off-camera accessories, 17.6 lb. load capacity. The head comes with a removable 75mm half ball for use on a tripod — or remove it for use on a monopod. MSRP $449 head only.
Litepanels Sola 4+ and Sola 6+ Fresnel lights
They use new, more powerful LEDs that produce a greater output than their predecessors at the same price. The Sola 4+ LED Fresnel boasts a more than 120% increase in output while the new Sola 6+ has a 50 % increase. MSRP Sola 4+ $999 and Sola 6+ $1795.50
Alzo Video Smoothy Radius and Linear Motorized Slider
This was really neat. This slider was shown with an optional motorized camera platform. You can program the camera motion by placing small magnetic “key frames” to tell the platform where to start, slow down and stop. MSRP slider and track $327, MSRP motor option $400
Canon 70-200mm T4.4 Cine Zoom Lens with EF Mount
In almost exactly the same form factor as their 18-80mm T4.4 Cine Zoom Lens, this one gives you a longer telephoto range. This lens is a cinema-style lens that includes a servo drive unit as a standard feature. It is a compact and lightweight lens constructed for users that demand versatility and portability. The lens incorporates image stabilization and many other features found on popular photo lenses, and provides high image quality for 4K image productions. MSRP: TBA