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posted by - Tuesday, 13 September 2011

As IBC 2011 winds down, we’d like to take a moment to share some of the more exciting developments. In addition to the announcements from AJA, Arri, Blackmagic Design, Panasonic, and Sony, there were a few other highlights from this year we thought were worth mentioning.

Atomos has announced a very clever field converter that’s about the same size as a Sony “L” battery aptly called the Connect. Available as an SDI to HDMI or HDMI to SDI converter, the Connect features a built-in battery that will power the converter for two hours. Alternatively, you can attach a Sony “L” battery to power the Connect that will also pass power through to another Sony “L” device, such as the Atomos Ninja recorder. This will actually provide uninterrupted power to your Sony device, which is a nice touch. Other impressive features include a test pattern generator and real-time 3:2 pulldown removal that will extract 24p or 30p from a 60i signal (or 25p from a 50i signal for our PAL readers). This means that if you’re using a camera that only has an HDMI output (such as the Sony NEX-FS100) or a recorder that does not offer 3:2 pulldown removal, you can use the Connect for “on-the-fly” 3:2 pulldown removal. Pricing for the US has yet to be determined, but the current MSRP is €249.

(Image courtesy Philip Bloom)

MTF Services had just enough time prior to IBC to put the finishing touches on a product we’ve all been waiting for. MTF was displaying a powered adaptor for the Canon EF lenses that allows for full iris control and included a nice display with focal length and f- stop information. Strictly a prototype at this point, the powered adaptor allows for iris control in 1/8th stop increments but will finally allow you to use your Canon EF lenses on your Panasonic AF100, Sony FS100, or Sony F3. No price or ETA at the moment, but this is the first working example of a powered Canon EF adaptor we’ve seen, so we’re hopeful we’ll see retail versions by the end of Q4 2011.

While Sachtler has traditionally focused on support systems for larger ENG and cinema cameras, they’ve recently made a strong push towards the CompactHD and HDSLR market with fluid heads such as the Cine DSLR. They’ve expanded into the entry level range with the new Ace tripod, a complete system with a max payload of 8.8 pounds. We had the opportunity to play with an Ace system last month, and it was nothing short of impressive. Made from a lightweight composite material, the Ace only weighs 3.7 pounds, with a 5-stop counterbalance system, as well as three vertical and horizontal drag settings. The new SA-drag system works well, and the movements are what I would call the typical Sachtler “feel.” The Ace is expected to be available in the United States starting November 14th, and will be available as a complete package with head, legs, ground or mid-level spreaders, and soft bag. Exact price on a full system hasn’t been announced, but it should list for around $500.

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