Best of NAB: Video Production Trends 2015


NAB was bigger and better than ever this year. The National Association of Broadcasters annual conference covered over 1 million square feet, showcased 1,700 companies with over 100,000 attendees. Here are some of the highlights:

Drones were a big hit last year, but aerial videography with drones has has become so popular that an aerial robotics & drone pavilion including a fully enclosed flying cage was set up for NAB 2015. DJI, which is releasing its new 4K (UHD) Phantom 3, sponsored the pavilion. If you want even more than a quadcopter with an on-board camera or GoPro, like a DSLR or RED camera, you will need a larger drone to carry the weight and more blades to be able to maneuver better. How about DSLR Pro’s X8 which can carry up to 30 lbs? Still need more? How about the monster 12 blade Flying POV xFOLD which can carry up to 40 lbs!

Digital cinema evolves. Can you say 8K?

RED Digital Cinema
Now that you have gotten over the shock of adjusting to 4K instead of 2K HD, are you ready to experience the inverse of limbo? How high can video resolution go? RED announced their new 8192 x 4320 sensor. RED’s 8K Weapon Dragon is set to shoot soon with 6K and then 8K by the end of the year. It will be capable of shooting at a variety of high speeds depending on the resolution you choose.

RED Digital Cinema

Canon released the EOS C300 Mark II, the latest rev of its 4K Digital Cinema Camera line which can record in either cinema (4096 x 2160) or Ultra HD broadcast (3840 x 2160) resolutions. The EOS C300 Mark II can record 10-bit 4:2:2 files at over 400Mbps in 4K internally, while simultaneously recording 4K RAW files to an external recorder. It has a brand new Super35mm CMOS sensor, lower rolling shutter distortion and now has an astonishing ISO of over 100,000.



The Ursa now has a more nimble high res counterpart boasting a 4K super 35mm sensor with a 15 stop range and dual CFast recorders and the legendary humongous 5” foldout screen.


Atomos Shogun
Atomos Shogun

If your camera sensor can output higher res than your onboard recorder can capture, why not use an Atomos recorder? First there was Ninja, then there was Samurai, now the brand new Shogun! You can record directly from your camera sensor at 10 bit 4:2:2 quality at 4K 30p or up to 120p at HD. Keep recording to your hearts content with hot swappable batteries for continuous power.


The ultimate focus puller

Redrock Micro Hālo Explorer

Redrock Micro
Manual focusing is tricky and with a DSLR it can be a real challenge. Whether you use an assistant camera crew member or pull focus yourself, you have got to love the revolutionary Redrock Micro Revolutionary wireless Hālo focus-pulling system. You can now manually select with tap to focus or automatically track subjects for focus.

According to Redrock Micro, the new system scheduled for release later this year “uses the same technology cars use for collision detection and avoidance; the Hālo Explorer creates a real-time scene map, combining pinpoint accuracy with up to 180 degrees of view. Artificial intelligence precisely identifies all your subjects (people and objects) and tracks their distance and location in real-time.”

Since its detection system is not dependent on humans, you could even be in total darkness to measure the distances accurately! The system won numerous NAB 2015 Best of Show Awards.

Redrock Micro

Out with the old. In with the new.

Retrofit your old Mole-Richardson Fresnel with an LED

LED Fresnels have hit the big time now that Mole-Richardson has come to town. Back in the day, if you wanted a punchy 2K light source on location, you would need to do a tie-in into the electrical panel because a 2,000 watt light would blow a 15 or 20 amp fuse. Now imagine several 2K lights cooking your talent on the set. Aren’t you glad that you can now get the equivalent of a 2K Fresnel light with less heat, a smaller footprint and that only uses 400 watts. In fact you now roll out the big gun---yes the 5K LED Fresnel and only draw 900 watts! If that wasn’t enough, you can retrofit your old Fresnel with a new LED trough or pick up the spanking new variable color Vari-Baby LED.


I can see clearly now

For those DSLRs videographers that want a better viewfinder experience, consider the Zacuto Gratical HD EVF viewfinder.  It is a big step up from the Zacuto optical Z-Fnder because it uses Micro OLED technology for a super sharp and bright viewing experience.  With a choice of connections, you can even mount the viewfinder onto your rig.


Jump cuts g-g-gone

Do you have a lot of great concise interview video segments, but spans that are irrelevant or rambling? You just cut them out right? Sure, but then you get a jump cut; or if you go with a dissolve, you end up with a weird double face superimpostion. How about if you could morph the face from the two shots together? Well now you can with Adobe’s innovative morph cut feature coming soon in Premiere CC.


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Topics: Video, Thought Leadership

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