SONY PMW-200 XDCAM
Announced as the successor to the popular Sony PMW-EX1/R cameras, the Sony PMW-200 camcorder brings high-resolution 4:2:2 chroma subsampling, a fast video bit rate of 50 Mb/s and three large 1⁄2-inch Exmor CMOS sensors that produce high-resolution capture of 1000 TVL (television lines), high sensitivity (F11 at 2000 lux) and low noise of 56 dB. When shooting in UDF mode, a maximum bit rate of 50 Mb/s is achievable with the MXF (Material Exchange Format) recording, and the camera also offers 35 Mb/s in MXF, 35 Mb/s/25 Mb/s in MP4 format and DVCAM coding. The Slow & Quick motion function provides frame rates from 1 fps to 30 fps in 1080p and 1 fps to 60 fps in 720p for a variety of fast- and slow-motion effects. An immediate playback function previews footage in-camera. The 14x fixed zoom lens offers autofocus and image stabilization, as well as three independent rings for zoom, focus and iris. The 16:9 color 3.5-inch WVGA (852×480) LCD panel illustrates each ring position on the screen. There’s a 15-second cache feature for capturing footage you may have missed prior to recording, and genlock and timecode make the system easily compatible with multicamera setups. A member of the Sony XDCAM family, the PMW-200 can capture to a variety of recording media, including SxS Pro, SxS-1, SD, Memory Stick and XQD cards (through an adapter). Wi-Fi remote control for both studio and on-location use through a free firmware upgrade is planned for December. List Price: $7,790. Contact: Sony, (800) 883-6817, www.pro.sony.com.
Offering editing capabilities, graphics creation, color correction and compositing, the latest Avid DS 11 NLE software incorporates a variety of new features for professional editors. With support of control surfaces across all pro Avid video-editing products, Avid Artist Color and Artist Transport Integration have been included for extensive control over color correction, grading, editing and navigation. The Resolution Independent Canvas provides a customizable size for high-resolution graphics creation with source generators and visual effects. Timeline operations can be blended to single or multiple clips or containers, and DS 11 integrates easily with Avid Interplay and Avid ISIS shared storage for simultaneous access and backup of media. Expanded file-format support includes Avid DNxHD 444, RED SDK (Software Development Kit) and Long-GOP support that eliminates transcoding time when conforming from Media Composer or Symphony. Upgrade pricing is available starting at roughly half the cost of a new license, and Avid DS 11 also can be purchased as a turnkey hardware and software system. With up to 16 channels of embedded SDI audio, each professional license includes a copy of Media Composer 6. List Price: Begins at $9,999. Contact: Avid Technology, (978) 640-6789, www.avid.com.
Compatible with broadcast, cinema and DSLR lenses, the VariZoom TOC single-, duo- or triple-channel motor-driven lens controls feature a touch-screen menu and 1,000 feet of wireless operational range. The motors offer both auto and manual calibration modes, lens scaling and variable smoothing. The single-channel focus-only system can be upgraded to two- or three-motor control systems, which also will integrate with VariZoom’s Cinema Pro motion-control heads. The motors feature a proprietary zero-backlash drivetrain. The oversized fluid-drag hand knob offers precision with focus control, while the force-sensitive thumb offers control over zoom. The systems are turnkey and ready to go, including a hand unit, receiver, motors, universal gear set and hard case. List Price: Begins at $5,999 (VZTOC-F1 Touch-screen Wireless Focus Control). Contact: VariZoom, (512) 219-7722, www.varizoom.com.
FULL-FEATURED ENTRY-LEVEL CAMCORDER
Targeted at event, sport, corporate and educational markets, the economically priced Panasonic AG-AC90 is equipped with a 1/4.7-inch, 2.19-megapixel 3-MOS image sensor for full 1920×1080 HD-video capture in 60/30/24p, as well as 60i and standard-definition 480/60i in 60Hz. With a wide 29.8mm to 357.6mm viewing angle, the 12x zoom lens incorporates a Nano Surface Lens Coating for reducing ghosting and flare. The lens also sports three independent adjustable rings for zoom, focus and iris control. There are two SDXC/SDHC memory card slots for simultaneous capture of video files, as well as high-speed 90 MBs UHS-1 memory card compatibility, a five-axis image stabilizer for reducing camera shake, 4X pixel-shifting technology for sharper images and the intelligent Auto (iA) Zoom 25X function for achieving better resolution through automatic in-camera adjustments to edge, gradation and detail. The AC90 is the first camcorder from Panasonic to include professional AVCCAM HD recording with a new PS mode (28 Mb/s in 60p). The camera also includes the PH mode (averaging 21 Mb/s with a maximum of 24 Mb/s), the HA mode (at approximately 17 Mb/s) and the extended recording HD mode (with approximately 6 Mb/s). A rotating 1.15-million-pixel 3.5-inch LCD monitor, two locking XLR inputs, two RCA audio outputs, two channels of Dolby Digital, timecode/UB recording, time/date stamp and two wired remote control terminals for zoom, focus, iris and REC are a few of the extra features. List Price: $2,250. Contact: Panasonic Solutions Company, (800) 211-PANA, www.panasonic.com.
KNOLL LIGHT FACTORY 3
Co-developed with Industrial Light & Magic VFX supervisor John Knoll, Knoll Light Factory 3 from Red Giant offers an advanced 3D lens-flare software system with a newly designed interface and realistic flare elements, numerous presets and time-saving animations. The streamlined interface features newly organized controls and a Lens Designer preview, while 28 Elements and 56 Sprites are included for fast light designs. There are more than 100 Lens Flare presets that include brand-new designs from John Knoll. Automated Behaviors, like Strobe, Pulse, Flicker and Blink, add unique animation through simulation of real-world effects. A new Edge Reaction feature flares or fades light for more realistic falloff near the edge of the frame. Knoll Light Factory 3 is available for After Effects, Premiere Pro, Final Cut Pro and Avid systems. It’s also available with the Red Giant Effects Suite 11 package with more than 70 tools for visual effects and broadcast design. There’s full integration with After Effects 3D (CS4-CS6) for syncing in the 3D space with animated lights. List Price: $199; $99 (upgrade); $899 (Effects Suite 11). Contact: Red Giant Software, (260) 918-4505, www.redgiant.com.
ON THE HORIZON
To meet the production needs of electronic and sports field production and film-style location work, the 150mm Skyline 70 fluid head supports a wide range of camera configurations from 9.9 to 82.5 pounds. There’s a seven-position pan-and-tilt drag plus a 0 setting for incremental adjustments to drag resistance even in an extreme temperature range of -40°F to +149°F. There’s also an eight-position selectable counterbalance, as well as +90°/-75° of tilt and a sliding 120mm quick-release plate. Other features include rear-facing illuminated controls, safety tilt lock and a dual-side mounting block for monitors and accessories. It’s available in three "Heavy Duty" kits with a selection of leg type and spreader: the Heavy Duty 2 Stage Carbon Fibre; the Heavy Duty Single Stage Alloy and the Heavy Duty Studio Alloy Tripod Systems. List Price: Begins at $7,500 for a Skyline 70 fluid head. Contact: Miller Camera Support, (973) 857-8300, www.millertripods.com.