Wireless Camera Technology in High Definition

Wireless Applications

There are hardly any limitations for wireless operated cameras today - down and uplinks to helicopters, on Skidoos, on sledges, on steady cams and for all kind of productions: sports, shows and concerts – without wireless the shooting of some of the most stunning pictures would have not been possible.

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History

In 2001 the face of broadcasting changed, and a new technology rewrote the rule book. The world was captivated when Sky News walked the streets of Bagdad in 2003 wirelessly transmitting live pictures with their signature COFDM wireless camera system. The birth of this technology changed the way we operate in the field.

The ability to walk wirelessly around corners and bounce signals for substantial distances helped overcome health and safety issues of cabling where crowds of people would otherwise cause huge problems. The use of on board cameras in sports such as F1, allow airborne coverage and this technology allowed broadcasters to be in the heart of the action and bring live action to the home of viewers across the world.

Today

There are hardly any limitations for wireless operated cameras today - down and uplinks to helicopters, on Skidoos, on sledges, on steady cams and for all kind of productions: sports, shows and concerts – without wireless the shooting of some of the most stunning pictures would have not been possible. Together with wireless cameras also the supporting systems like stabilizing systems have been improved. One example is the artemis EFP Pro HD SDI from Sachtler. The EFP Pro is the only camera stabilizing system with an internal 3 GHz video line. This enables direct HD SDI and HD RGB monitor connection. Depending from model or manufacturer of the monitor the operator can use integrated measure instruments like waveform and vector scope for a high quality control over their work, without the need for a downconverter.

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Real HD shooting: The patented internal HD SDI wiring will bring HD video signals up to 3 GHz directly from the camera to the HD monitor. All other kinds of signals like HD RGB and SD can be used with the artemis EFP Pro HD SDI. Modular construction: Quick release mechanism between the post and side to side module makes the artemis so modular. It is easy to separate side to side module from the post, which contains the main cable, using 12 pin Lemo plugs and allows to flip over the gimbal for „low mode“ operation. Internal Tally system: The artemis system offers an internal Tally system, that can be used with all cameras.
Dual-Dynamic-Balance: Patented technology for a perfect dynamic balance, specially when flat panel monitors are used.

But meanwhile also other applications like the Polecam, the Steadicam or the Segway are supporting the triumph of wireless cameras in live productions

The Future

With over 6 years experience in the field, SD wireless cameras are now an essential part of day to day operations and coverage. They're used to cover all sporting events ranging from weekly football to the Olympic Games. Nearly every newsgathering truck now carries an SD camera system while helicopters are kitted out with COFDM systems. They are no longer a once thought luxury but a key piece of how broadcasters work today.

So what is the future? Technology must move forward and grow to create new ways to work with COFDM. 2006 saw the exciting launch of the HD wireless camera. The same trusted and proven technology but now in HD. Cellular networks, central receive points in city centers, repeater systems, and both cars and bikes are the way to move forward.

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Wireless Cameras and wireless camera adaptors

Following you will find a short overview of five Wireless High Definition Camera Systems available on the market: BMS, GigaWave, Link Research, Nucomm and Grass Valley.

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Broadcast Microwave Services (BMS)

On April 3, 2007 Broadcast Microwave Services, Inc. (BMS), a subsidiary of Cohu, Inc announced that it had purchased Tandberg Television AVS GmbH. BMS designs, manufactures and sells digital and analog microwave communication systems. Tandberg Television AVS, located outside of Frankfurt, has been renamed BMS Europe. Specializing in the manufacture of COFDM transmitters and receivers, the company’s high definition COFDM transmission products will complement BMS product portfolio. The combined product line of both companies is available to customers worldwide. The previous management team of Tandberg Television AVS, Reinhard Kühn, Managing Director and Rainer Horn, Director of Operations continue their successful leadership of the new BMS Europe facilities. Graham Bunney, President of BMS welcomed the AVS team with the following words, “We are excited about the addition of Tandberg Television AVS and its talented team of 25 employees in Germany with their proven track record for product development and support. With this purchase, we have expanded our digital microwave communications solutions, espacially for High Definition broadcast television. The acquisition also enable us to quickly respond to changing market requirements, grow into new gegraphical territories and offer the customer service and support necessary to sustain our global expansion plans.”

The CT2020HD CFDM Transmitter

Mobile HD Transmissions for DENG, OB Applications and Live EventsThe CT2020HD is the no-compromise HD wireless transmitter from BMS, offering a practical and affordable replacement for high performance SD transmitters that can deliver HD quality. The ground breaking CT2020HD provides cutting edge technology supporting many revolutionary features in combination to provide the closest alternative to a wired HD camera that you will find. In combination with our optional build-in remote control there is no detectable difference to triax operated cameras.

• Low Power Consumption
• One-Frame Latency• COFDM 2k Transmission
• 1W RF Output Power max, reducible down 100mW by Panel
• 8/12/16 MHz Bandwidth (up to 48MBit/s Video bandwidth)
• 1080i and 720p at 24p, 25p, 30p, 50i, 60i incl. Frequency derivates
• Rugged and Lightweight Design
• Camera Dockable with Brackets
• Anton Bauer- / IDX- / PAG-Battery Mount
• Frequency Range 1.95 to 2.65 GHz, 3.2 to 3.6 GHz and 6.5 to 7 GHz
• Camera Remote Control for major camera suppliers, fully integrated in the TX housing (Option)
• Genlock ( flying wheel synchronizer)

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Gigawave Limited

Gigawave has grown from a small specialist antenna company, employing just a handful of people, to a multi-million Pound company with customers in over 100 countries in a short space of time.

Today, the Company designs and manufactures a wide range of specialised RF equipment for television outside broadcasts, news gathering and security applications.The Company's Chairman and founder is Henry Barczynski. The Gigawave Head Office, adjacent to the first fairway of the beautiful 'Garden Course' at the Essex Golf & Country club, enjoys far reaching views over the English countryside. It is difficult to imagine a more pleasant working environment, yet 'The Fairways' is close to London Stansted Airport and less than one hour by train from Central London. Gigawave took on a Technical Centre in early 2007, transferring its Production, Sales, Test and Development departments to the state of the art facility situated just a short lakeside walk from the Head Office. Gigawave's reputation is based on its unique operational experience and the expertise of the people it employs. Anyone who has the opportunity to visit the Gigawave Technical Centre, conveniently located in a rural location close to London, cannot help but be impressed by the team of people who design and build the ever growing range of Gigawave products.

The D-Cam HD „Clip-On“ Transmitter

Gigawave designs and manufactures a wide range of portable and fixed microwave equipment for television outside broadcasts and electronic news gathering. The D-Cam is designed for use with both HD and SD cameras for electronic news gathering, television outside broadcasts and studio application. The D-Cam HD offers exceptional reliability and performance. Used in conjunction with the Gigawave camera control system, full remote control of broadcast cameras is available.

• Low Power Consumption (18W)
• Selectable to less than 2 Frames Latency
• Modulation Modes: QPSK, 16QAM, 64QAM
• Data Rate 4.98 to 31.7 Mbit/s• 100 mW RF Output Power
• 8 MHz Bandwidth
• Rugged and Lightweight Design
• Camera Dockable with Brackets• Anton Bauer- / IDX- / PAG-Battery Mount
• Frequency Range 1.3 GHz to 7 GHz
• Camera Remote Control (Option)

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Link Research Limited

Link Research Limited was founded by David and Len Mann beginning full time operation in September 1992. Drawing on their experience of running successful manufacturing companies, including Link Electronics, Vinten Broadcast and Cabletime, their aim was to build a new company in the field of professional television. Both Link`s Encoder/Modulators and the Wireless Camera Systems have become market leading products. The major departments at Link are Sales, Research and Development, Service and Support, Production, Systems and Administration. All areas are essential to the operation but Research and Development is key, with one third of Link’s staff dedicated to R&D. Link markets its products to the television broadcasters worldwide through its distribution network in every continent. In February 2005 Link joined the Vislink PLC group. Vislink is one of Link's biggest customers for OEM encoder boards. In addition Link's wireless camera systems have added a key product range for the group. With emphasis on Research and Development the future looks very bright with Link’s new High Definition wireless camera systems and other products. The aim is to continue the steady growth in the exciting world of professional digital television.

The L1500 Transmitter

The L1500 is the latest wireless camera transmitter from Link Research. This new unit will allow you to choose to either have HD or SD transmission from the same unit. The modular design of this transmitter will allow you to start from a standard SD transmitter and add camera control and HD capability as and when customers require it. Also by being modular customers will be able to change RF modules in the field as needed. Standard IDX, PAG or Anton Bauer camera and battery mounts can be specified to allow the transmitter to be used with the customers own SD or HD cameras.

• Low Power Consumption (24W)
• Selectable to less than 2 Frames Latency
• Modulation Modes: QPSK, 16QAM, 64QAM
• Data Rate 4.98 to 31.7 Mbit/s
• 100 mW RF Output Power
• 8 MHz Bandwidth
• Rugged and Lightweight Design
• Camera Dockable with Brackets
• Anton Bauer- / IDX- / PAG-Battery Mount
• Frequency Range 1.4GHz to 7 GHz
• Camera Remote Control (Option)

Nucomm Inc.

Nucomm Inc. is a worldwide provider of digital and analog video microwave systems for the broadcast industry. Working with leading customers around the world, Nucomm has developed a comprehensive line of portable and fixed link microwave systems. A hallmark of Nucomm's products is their unmatched flexibility in supporting the migration from analog to digital transmission. From its inception in 1990, Nucomm has been a trendsetter in product research, development and manufacturing, introducing products with features, technologies, and capabilities never before offered in microwave transmitters and receivers. As Nucomm’s customers embrace the digital age, Nucomm continues to evolve as a worldwide provider of end-to-end digital systems solutions. No matter which wireless video transport equirement the customers have, chances are Nucomm offers an innovative system for their application. The key to Nucomm’s success is in maintaining a firm commitment to the customers, the industry, and the technology. By focusing on innovation, product quality, and customer satisfaction, Nucomm has gained a reputation as a provider of reliable, leading-edge microwave systems for broadcast, government, military, law enforcement, and homeland security applications. Since 2007 Nucomm is part of the Vitec Group.

The CamPac2 Transmitter

The CamPac 2 is a small lightweight HD/SD COFDM microwave transmitterintended for wireless camera applications including sports coverage and electronicnews gathering ENG. Its stylish rugged machined housing provides durabilityand excellent thermal characteristics for operation in the harshest of conditions.The unit can mount to professional cameras using integrated battery adapterplates for standard IDX or Anton Bauer batteries.The CamPac 2 transmitter includes an integrated MPEG2 encoder and variable bandwidth COFDM modulator. The CamPac 2 will accept various video formats from SDI, component and composite to DVB-ASI for repeating applications. The dual audio inputs can be configured for microphone, line level or AES/EBU digital audio.

• Low Power Consumption (24W)
• 2 Frames Latency
• Modulation Mode COFDM from 6-24MHz
• Data Rate 20 to 50 Mbit/s
• 200 mW RF Output Power
• 8 MHz Bandwidth
• Rugged and Lightweight Design
• Camera Dockable with Brackets
• Anton Bauer- / IDX- / PAG-Battery Mount
• Frequency Range 1.99GHz to 7.1 GHz
• Camera Remote Control (Option)

Grass Valley Group

If you watch television or go to the movies, you've seen Grass Valley™ brand products at work. Grass Valley is one of the world's video and film experts — especially as broadcast, television, and film production go digital. Whether you're watching the evening news or a feature film, some of Grass Valley products may have been used in production. That's because Grass Valley offers a wide range of the broadest products aand a high levels of customer support and systems expertise available for broadcast, TV, and film professionals. The company offers a full line of multi-format switchable, HD-upgradeable, and HD-only broadcast, post-production, and video compression and networking products that deliver streamlined workflows, and cost efficiencies. Our HD wireless camera system gives complete freedom of movement under the most demanding production conditions. With its compact design, integrated battery mount, and bi-directional digital transmission, it frees customers from carrying additional equipment. And it eliminates adverse effects from multi-path reflections so a cameraman can pass through doors, make low-angle shots, and choose the most suitable camera handling position. All while providing excellent HD picture quality.

The LDK-5464/00 Transmitter

Sports fans can now analyze the action in high definition (HD), with the launch of the Grass Valley™ HD Wireless Camera System. The HD Wireless Camera System features the JPEG 2000 compression scheme. This wavelet-based system delivers excellent compression efficiency together with the elimination of blocking artifacts when in difficult reception environments. Given a bandwidth of 55-75 Mb/s, high-quality HD images can be transferred using pure JPEG 2000 with a latency of just one frame, making it perfect for intercutting them with cabled cameras in studio situations. A lower bit-rate, highly robust transmission mode and booster for long-distance outdoor applications are also included. Future developments could allow the wireless camera to become a true WiMax device, bringing the possibility of a roaming HD camera anywhere in a city, for example, for rapid-response ENG.

• Low Power Consumption (28W)
• 1 Frames Latency• Modulation Mode COFDM
• Data Rate 35 to 75 Mbit/s
• 60 mW RF Output Power
• 8 MHz Bandwidth
• Rugged and Lightweight Design
• Camera Dockable with Brackets
• Anton Bauer- / IDX- / PAG-Battery Mount
• Frequency Range 2.2GHz to 2.7 GHz
• Camera Remote Control (Option)

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