The Teradek Cube – wireless video joy for your HDSLR – planet5D at PhotoCine EXPO

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You may have seen some things about the Teradek Cube, but we got the chance to interview Rod Clark while we were at the PhotoCine Expo and have produced this interview for you as well as some new information that has come out since the interview was recorded.

First, you may wonder what the Cube is:

Cube is the world’s first camera-top wireless HD video encoder. Cube streams up to 1080p over WiFi or wired Ethernet. Cube is the ideal solution for guerilla filmmakers who need on-set video monitoring without the cost or complexity of a full VTR rig. Cube is also a great solution for full-scale film productions to eliminate camera tethering on long dolly moves, running footage, steadicam shots, hand-held operation, jib-arms, and crane shots.

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Here's the recorded interview:

planet5D at PhotoCine EXPO 2010 – Rod Clark from from planetMitch on Vimeo.


And here's what Rod sent us yesterday about the latest developments with the Cube:

“There have been several big developments in the past few weeks regarding Cube. The big news is the ecosystem of workflow that is developing around Cube. First is the development of LightIron Digital's LivePlay.

LivePlay is possible because Cube captures the meta data generated from and associated with every take on the RED ONE. The takes are recorded on the server, then the iPad is used to play back and tag takes. LivePlay is a high-end system proprietary to LightIron. OFFHOLLYWOOD in New York City is promoting a similar system that uses open-source technology and only costs $4.99 in iPad apps. The system lacks the ability to tag like LivePlay, but it has been tested with two cameras streaming to a single laptop server, recording proxy, and viewing playback on the iPad, at a much lower cost. Cube has had a terrific reception with the users and is currently being used on several big budget studio TV and film productions.

One common misconception that we run across is that there is a high latency with Cube. Cube has been tested both internally at Teradek and with third party users and we typically see 4 frames of latency. The misconception comes from streaming video on an iPad. The iPad natively buffers video to provide the highest possible video quality, and in typical applications (such as movie watching) this is desirable. But for on-set monitoring and HD-SLR applications it's not desirable. Ironically, iPad plays back video files instantly, so both the LightIron and OFFHOLLYWOOD system play back recorded takes instantly, with no delay. The differentiation is iPad plays files instantly and streams with a buffer. So Cube streams live video to most any device with a 4 frame latency, the exception being iPhone and iPad, which can play back files instantly but buffer streaming video. Our challenge is to create an iPad app the tricks the iPad into thinking the stream is a file and circumvent the buffering. I suspect the iPad app will be available by Christmas as a perfect stocking stuffer.

Also, Cube is field upgradable. Firmware upgrades only take a couple of moments to complete. Right now is the perfect time to buy a Cube. Visionary independent filmmakers, TV shows, film studios and news gatherers are trailblazing a new workflow reality with Cube by creating instant dialies, wireless monitoring solutions for steadicams, jib-arms, and vehicle-to-vehicle running footage, and wireless solutions for the on-location new gatherers. It's a really exciting time for innovative solutions in live HD video distribution.”

Blogger's Disclaimer: We have no relationship with Teradek

(Photo credit: snap from the video)

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