Our latest HD Portable Production Unit (PPU) is designed to scale up or down with your production requirements. It’s one 16U rack-mount flightcase packed full of all the signal processing and ‘glue’ to handle any multi-camera production.
Just add the extras, like monitors, VT recorders and players, talkback and a vision mixer to suit. Packages available.
As standard, the PPU features:
Call 0207 193 9722 for a bespoke solution.
An Outside Broadcast (OB) truck was first used for King George VI’s coronation in May 1937, watched by around 10,000 people at home on the BBC’s television service.
Since then, broadcast has changed massively – analogue has been killed off by digital, HD has surpassed SD, and new technologies are set to change things in the next few years even more. Broadcast giant Sony helped pioneer the first 3D OB truck a couple of years ago and, at NAB this year, they announced they’re building a 4K multi-camera OB truck. NHK even trialed a modified 8K OB truck during the London Olympics 2012.
So, how has the advance of technology changed the OB market? Well, for one thing, equipment is smaller. Instead of a cumbersome rack of VTR decks, space-saving file-based servers are now the norm. The advent of multi-viewers has changed OB trucks, too – no longer do you need a wall of chunky CRT monitors – large flat screen monitors will do the job instead. Fibre cabling has also increased capabilities. Fibre means longer distances and fewer cables required. At Trickbox TV, we use the most-compact kit possible. Not only is this great for our clients, it means our kit rooms and trucks have also gotten smaller!
The cost of kitting out an OB truck or studio facility has plummeted. A few years ago, for a simple multi-camera set-up, you’d need a vision mixer, a separate multi-viewer, a video server to play the show’s opening title in on, some up-converters for that last-minute SD feed, a video scaler for that PC feed you need to get into the mixer etc. But now, one unit – a vision mixer for under £10K – can do all that! The cost of equipment has reduced considerably, part due to a fiercer market, but largely due to the cost of producing components has reduced. CMOS sensors over CCD sensors is an obvious case. The introduction of KA band and 3G and 4G video uplink means it’s easier and cheaper to transmit. Will this mean more outside broadcast? We certainly hope so.
There are some staples of television which OB will continue to dominate, such as sport and large-scale national events. But other traditional OB territory, such as music, events and festivals, can now be achieved on a smaller scale. You can get the same functionality as an OB truck with a portable production unit (PPU) but with a smaller footprint and lower budget. Trickbox TV often get asked to quote for music jobs and big events because, sometimes, an OB truck just isn’t cost effective or there’s space limitations. Plus, we work with some smaller broadcast production companies to help provide bespoke solutions for pilots or low-budget productions.
So what other emerging technologies are likely to change the face of OB? IP broadcast technology is sure to grow. BBC R&D has developed Stagebox – a camera adaptor designed to transmit everything you’d expect in a conventional triax or fibre cable (video, talkback, tally lights etc), but it’s all done over a single cat5E cable. The video is encoded at industry standard AVC-Intra 100 compression in real time. With the right software at the other end, you could ISO record all your cameras onto one storage device.
IP control is another technology changing how things are done in the field. Sony has brought out a software application which allows you to rack multiple cameras over IP. Every vision engineer must be thinking: ‘Do I actually need to get out of bed for this job? I could rack that show from home!’
GVG recently announced the launch of GV Director™, a nonlinear live production system. With built-in graphics capability, a video server, assignable buttons and a futuristic touch screen interface, mixers like these are changing the way productions are managed. GVG say the emphasis is on creativity and not on technical knowledge. As IP technologies get stronger, will it get to a point where there’s just a skeleton crew out in the field, but everything’s controlled from another location? Well, since technology is getting better, passion from people in the industry is strong and the demand is high from viewers, it’s clear the future of OB is going to get better and better.
If you’d like to find out how Trickbox TV can help with your next outside broadcast, call Liam on 0207 193 9722.
Firstly – apologies for the cheap tabloid headline of this blog, but we couldn’t resist!
Yes, our flagship PPU (portable production unit), The Trickbox® has spent the last month on the roof of a building overlooking the Vatican, providing studio facilities for a foreign news broadcaster covering the historic selection of the new Pope.
If you’d like to find out how Trickbox TV can provide cost effective broadcast facilities for your next production, or if you need temporary broadcast facilities, get in touch. Please email email@example.com or call us on 0207 193 9722.
Over 350 guests arrived at the Royal Albert Hall on the evening of Sunday 16th September to a champagne reception, a three-course meal, beverages and a live auction all with one aim: to raise as much money for The Sunflower Jam as possible. After dinner, the iconic venue opened its doors to a further 2000 people and everyone settled in for what promised to be a once-in-a-lifetime rock music line up.
Trickbox were there to cover the whole event with our trusty PPU, The Trickbox® and 8 cameras.
The 6th Sunflower Jam, a rock & roll music event saw rock legends take to the Royal Albert Hall stage to perform. The evening, hosted by actor Jeremy Irons, consisted of many special performances from Bruce Dickinson (Iron Maiden), Ian Paice (Deep Purple), Mark King (Level 42), Alfie Boe, Brian May (Queen), Kerry Ellis, John Paul Jones (Led Zeppelin) and Alice Cooper. Jerry Brown, Margo Buchanan, Micky Moody, Murray Gould, Nick Fyffe, Sandi Thom, Steve Balsamo, The Temperance Movement, The Big C Choir, Uli Jon Roth and Wix Wickins made up an outstanding house band.
The show’s highlights included Brian May, John Paul Jones and Ian Paice teaming up for a rendition of Deep Purple’s ‘Black Night,’ and Brian May joining Alice Cooper for a version of the shock rocker’s classic ‘School’s Out.’ Just when the Royal Albert Hall thought it couldn’t get any better, the evening ended with each and every rock legend coming together on stage for a ‘Superjam’ cover of Deep Purple’s anthem ‘Smoke on the Water.’ The atmosphere was nothing short of electric – everyone was acutely aware that they were watching something special. Suffice to say, the Royal Albert Hall has never rocked like that!
We recently provided the multi-camera and video streaming facilities for a Conor Maynard music performance.
The live secret gig was in a small art gallery in London and the gig and interview with the star was streamed live into muzu.tv
We used our portable production unit (PPU), The Trickbox®, and 4 Panasonic HPX3000 series cameras.
Visit us at stand 320 in the Production Show area where we’ll be demonstrating our flyaway multi-camera portable production unit (PPU), The Trickbox® plus we’ll be demonstrating some of the best file-based and tapeless external recorders on the market including, the Atomos Samurai, the Blackmagic Design HyperDeck Studio and our new flyaway AJA Ki Pro multi record station.
We provided a 5 camera flyaway PPU setup for an all night music festival at ExCeL London recently. We used a mixture of Panasonic HPX371 and HPX500 cameras and recorded the live cut on an AJA Ki Pro whilst streaming live.
Here’s a few pics from the night:
Please see our Facebook page for more images from the night
We were called in to shoot The Stranglers Convention 2011 – The Weekend in Black for a DVD.
We used our multi-camera PPU, The Trickbox®, and 5 Panasonic P2 cameras – a mixture of HPX371‘s and HPX500′s. We were filming on and off all day and night so the file-based workflow and P2 card management was busy, plus we were encoding a H.264 live as we went for a quick turnaround for the web.
Here’s a few images from The Stranglers Convention 2011 but see the Trickbox FaceBook page for more.
See our FaceBook page for more images from The Stranglers Convention 2011
Trickbox TV were proud to be asked to handle the multi-camera recording of the One Love Peace Festival at Wembley Arena. We used our multi-camera portable production unit - The Trickbox® and three Panasonic AG-HPX371 cameras.
Commemorating the 30th anniversary of the passing of Bob Marley and supporting the fight against gun and knife crime, the theme of the 2011 One Love Peace Festival was ‘Throw Away your Guns, Throw Away your Knives and Save a Life’
It was a great day, packed full of bands like Aswad, Levi Roots (with a remixed version of Reggae Reggae Sauce!), Sean Paul, Busta Rhymes and Shaggy. It was a long hard day for the crew, with a fairly big rig – 100 metre camera cable runs. But it was great fun.
See more photos from the One Love Peace Festival on our Facebook page
For more information about any of our services, please call:0207 193 9722