So the NAB exhibition opened to the public today, and I spent the majority of the day at my post as a demo artist for Cineform. Honestly the day seemed to go by much more quickly than I anticipated. I did get a chance to look over a few other booths, and noticed a couple items of interest.
Blackmagic has a number of new mini-convertors for analog component HD, HDMI, and HD-SDI, as well as an updated and expanded Video hub. The new “Broadcast” Video Hub is in a whole new category, increasing sixfold from 12×24 to 72×144 inputs/outputs, while adding support for 3Gb SDI. They also released the BlackMagic Video Recorder, a micro sized H264-encoding HD capture device that offers component HD, and optionally SDI input, connected via USB.
Adobe has released another update for Premiere Pro CS3, so now we are at 3.2.0. Among other smaller items, this update adds native support for XDCam-HD, and XDCam-EX, in all standard formats. Adobe was much quicker to support Sony’s SxS solid state recording format than they were Panasonic’s P2 solid state format that had been out for two years. On that note, I personally prefer the Sony varient for a number of reasons: modern ExpressCard interface, high transfer rate, 1080p cameras, etc. Now we just need larger and much cheaper SxS cards.
Although I have yet to personally make it to that hall, I hear that Sony has a couple of cool new toys. The PMW-EX3 extends their XDCam-EX line with a second model that adds support for interchangable lenses, capable of interfacing its 1/2″ imager with both 1/2″ and 2/3″ HD lenses. There is also an XDCam-EX VTR, the EX30, which I anticipated was coming, but it seems that it is physically larger than I was hoping. The EX format lends itself well to the creation of a small scale HD-SDI recording and playback device, which would pair well with a tiny HD-SDI camera. They also seem to have finally finished their new XDCam-HD camera that records their new MPEG2-422 format to XD. I expect that new 50Mb/s XDCam format will eventually be a broadcast HDCam replacement. No 24p support there, so I won’t be using that format for a while, but we have seen that pattern before, and it will arrive eventually.
Red also released details on their future products, but they aren’t due out until early 2009, so I will discuss those at a later date.