NASCAR Drops Checkered Flag on Ambitious Year of Social Video
Fri, 02 Dec 2016 12:19:31 -0500
The 2016 NASCAR season brought plenty of dramatics, with one of stock-car racing’s most popular figures, Tony Stewart, taking his final lap and Jimmie Johnson winning yet another Sprint Cup title — his seventh — making his case for legendary status alongside the likes of Richard Petty and Dale Earnhardt. It also saw the sport improve by leaps and bounds in its digital-video and social-media strategy.
Whether via Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or SnapChat, NASCAR did a significant amount of experimenting with live Q&As and press conferences, 360-degree and virtual-reality videos, behind-the-scenes access with a live series called “Garage Cam,” and a digital friendly mini-documentary series “Behind the Wall: Martin Truex Jr. and the 78 Team” — all content that helped the league excel in the digital and social-media world.
NASCAR capped its season in social in a big way, using Facebook Live to stream the entirety of the final race of the season — the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series at Miami — from the on-board, in-car cameras from Tony Stewart’s No. 14 Chevrolet.
“It’s that extension the young fans were looking for, the new fans that may not be as familiar with NASCAR,” says Steve Stum, VP, operations and technical production, NASCAR Productions. “It’s looking towards the future of where broadcast rights go. In the future, how do we [build] viewership, and is there a way in the future to monetize this stuff? [It has] grown leaps and bounds, and there’s a lot of focus from NASCAR in that area for the newer, younger fans. We’re always looking to expand where we can go and new markets and new ideas and new technology, and certainly streaming on the social platforms is a big thing that’s coming in the future.”
Alex Case Takes Over at AES President
Wed, 30 Nov 2016 16:48:33 -0500
The Audio Engineering Society (AES) has named Alex Case has been named President of the professional audio organization.
“Alex Case has a diverse background in business, science, engineering and academia,” shares John Krivit, immediate Past President of the Society. “Alex is a great communicator. His skill set will serve the AES well over the next year, as it has already done with his committee and Board of Governors roles.”
Case has dedicated his professional life to the study of aesthetics, perception, signal processing, electroacoustics and room acoustics for the creation and enjoyment of recorded music. Bringing a wealth of knowledge and hands-on experience to his pursuits as an audio engineer and as an educator, Case’s background has served him well in his roles as a Fellow of the Audio Engineering Society and Co-Chair of the Membership Committee, also serving on the Education Committee (past chair) and the Technical Committee for Recording Technology and Practice.
In addition to his leadership in the Audio Engineering Society, Case currently serves as an Associate Professor of Sound Recording Technology at the University of Massachusetts Lowell, while continuing to give invited lectures and master classes at universities and events around the world. Case is a widely published author of over one hundred articles in industry journals and trade publications, as well as two books, and is a Fellow of the Acoustical Society of America, for which he is a frequent presenter of papers and chair of special sessions.
Case strongly endorses the AES’s goals of facilitating the advancement of audio science, professional practices and education through membership and participation in the Society’s activities at both the local section and international levels. “The greatest strength of the Audio Engineering Society is its membership,” says Case. “The diversity and depth of knowledge and professionalism in our membership is what makes the Society unique.
Serving that membership with opportunities to grow and thrive is the AES’s highest calling.” The same efforts that benefit AES’s membership have positive reach beyond the Society, says Case. “The leadership of the AES in advancing the art and science of audio not only fosters progress in the audio industry, but helps improve the consumer experience of sound.”
AJA Now Shipping KUMO 6464 Compact SDI Router
Tue, 29 Nov 2016 17:18:00 -0500
AJA Video Systems is taking orders for KUMO 6464, its new compact 3G-SDI router with 64 3G-SDI inputs and 64 3G-SDI outputs for high quality, cost effective signal routing in a small form factor. Extremely compact in design, KUMO 6464 facilitates long cable runs, minimizes signal interference and fits seamlessly into an array of broadcast, production, post and AV environments.
Ideal for any installation where a balance of size and routing capacity are critical, KUMO 6464 provides powerful signal control and offers the ability to route video with embedded audio to BNC outputs with auto reclocking of SDI rates. It joins AJA’s family of KUMO routers, which includes KUMO 3232, KUMO 1616, and the KUMO 1604. KUMO routers can be configured for ganged dual and quad port routing, allowing users to group together multiple inputs and outputs for Dual Link, 4K and UltraHD workflows. This allows seamless routing of uncompressed or Raw 4K and UltraHD signals throughout a production or post facility.
KUMO 6464 Features:
• Standards up to 3G-SDI: SMPTE-259/292/424
• Quad-Link, Dual-Link, 4K/UltraHD with multiport SDI switching for 2 or 4 sources at once
• Connectors: 64 BNC inputs and 64 BNC outputs
• Impedance: 75 ohms
• Reference Input: Analog Color Black (1V) or Composite Sync (2V or 4V) Looping, Nonterminating
• Auto Re-clocking SDI rates: 270/1485/2970 Mbps
• Auto Bypass of Re-clocker
• Pass through rates: 3 Mbps — 3 Gbps
• 1x RS-422, Grass Valley Native Protocol
• 10/100/1000 Ethernet (RJ-45), REST API
• Embedded web server for remote control on a standard web-browser
“KUMO 6464 offers incredibly flexibility and extensibility for any scenario where routing of multiple signals is required,” says Nick Rashby, President, AJA Video Systems, “Our newest addition to the KUMO family of products offers the same quality, value and reliability that AJA customers expect, with the increased density our customers have been asking for.”
Orders can now be placed for KUMO 6464 through AJA’s worldwide reseller network at a US MSRP of $7,995; product will ship next week. For a complete set of features and technical specifications, please visit www.aja.com/products/kumo.
Blackmagic Design Announces NewVideo Assist 2.3 Update
Mon, 28 Nov 2016 17:07:42 -0500
Blackmagic Design has announced Video Assist 2.3, a major new update for Blackmagic Video Assist customers that adds 3D LUTs to both models. This update also adds features to the 5” Blackmagic Video Assist including improved DNxHD and DNxHR support, false color monitoring, expanded focus options and new screen rotation features. The Video Assist 2.3 update is available for download now from the Blackmagic Design website and is free of charge for all Blackmagic Video Assist customers.
Customers using the Video Assist 2.3 update can now load up to six 3D LUTs when monitoring video on set with their 5” or 7” Blackmagic Video Assist. 3D LUTs have become an important part of digital filmmaking because they transform the camera images into a look that closely approximates the final look the director wants. The benefit of monitoring with 3D LUTs is that the crew can see the footage as the director intends it, and it’s completely non destructive because the original camera footage remains untouched. The six 3D LUTs can be stored and recalled at any time by the user and this new feature is available on both the 5” Blackmagic Video Assist model and the 7” Blackmagic Video Assist 4K model.
For customers using the 5” Blackmagic Video Assist model, this update adds new features that were previously released only on the 7” Blackmagic Video Assist 4K model.
These new features include the ability to record to DNxHD and DNxHR files in MXF format which improves compatibility with Avid systems running on Windows. In addition, customers can now choose between DNxHD 220, 145 and 45 bit rates, or between DNxHR HQ, SQ, and LB formats when recording.
The Video Assist 2.3 update also adds false color monitoring exposure tools to the 5” Blackmagic Video Assist model. False color exposure tools make it easier to properly set exposure in different parts of the image by highlighting specific color ranges of luminance with a solid color overlay. For example, green indicates neutral grey, while pink tones are good references for skin, which is typically one stop over neutral grey. Using false color helps camera operators keep exposure consistent from shot to shot.
In addition, Video Assist 2.3 update also expands the options for focus assist so customers can now choose whether they want to see red, green, blue, black, white, or traditional focus peaking indicators. This makes it easier for customers to accurately adjust focus in a wider range of scenes and under a variety of different lighting conditions. Customers will now also have the ability to manually control the screen orientation and turn off the auto rotate feature, which makes it easier for customers to use the 5” Blackmagic Video Assist model with handheld gimbals and other equipment designed to move the camera and rig simultaneously.
“Blackmagic Video Assist is perfect for customers that need better monitoring and higher quality recording,” says Grant Petty, CEO, Blackmagic Design. “This new update adds incredible LUT monitoring to both models, and brings some of the same powerful high-end features from the 7” Blackmagic Video Assist 4K model to customers that have the 5 inch Blackmagic Video Assist model. We think the massive number of features on the 5 inch Video Assist model is amazing when you consider it only costs $495! That’s why Blackmagic Video Assist has become an essential part of every filmmakers toolkit because they help customers shoot and capture higher quality video with everything from DSLRs to older tape based camcorders, and even the latest digital film cameras!”
Blackmagic Video Assist 2.3 update is available now and is a free download from the Blackmagic Design website.
FCC and Canadian Commission Sign Robocall and Spoofing Enforcement
Tue, 22 Nov 2016 17:13:49 -0500
The FCC’s Enforcement Bureau and the Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunications Commission today announced a formal agreement, committing the two agencies to work together to combat unlawful robocalls. The Memorandum of Understanding represents the FCC’s commitment to working cooperatively with international regulators to combat robocalls and caller ID spoofing.
“Robocall scams are as much of a menace to American consumers as they are to Canadians,” said Enforcement Bureau Chief Travis LeBlanc. “We know that a lot of these calls originate from outside the United States. It is imperative that we work with our counterparts around the globe to quickly identify the origin of these calls and to shut them down at their source.”
Under the agreement, the two agencies agree to cooperate on enforcement matters related to unlawful robocalls and caller ID spoofing. These agencies have also committed to exchange information about investigations and complaints, share knowledge and expertise, provide information about legal theories and economic analysis, keep each other abreast of significant legal developments, and provide other appropriate assistance.
This agreement follows on the heels of a similar memorandum of understanding that the Enforcement Bureau signed last June with members of the Unsolicited Communications Enforcement Network (formerly the London Action Plan). This coalition coordinates and promotes international cooperation and activities targeting unlawful communications like robocall and robotext scams. Members, like the FCC, share intelligence, identify common threats, learn from each other’s best practices, and assist each other with investigations where permissible.
The Memorandum of Understanding is available at: http://go.usa.gov/x8T2s