Aputure’s Array Trans: Cool Wireless Tech, Aggressive Price, Candid Description of its Limitations

by Hugh BrownstoneLeave a Comment

We first saw a pre-release version of Aputure's Array Trans (a wireless transmisson system) last April at NAB 2015, and it was impressive.  Nine months later, it's finally on the shelves. With exceptionally aggressive pricing ($599) and virtually zero lag, it looks good. It's also the first time I've seen a description of a product which gives equal weight to what it can and cannot do — something both impressive and important.

It's no secret that we like the guys at Aputure.

From their VS line of monitors [B&H|Amazon] to their Amaran [B&H|Amazon] and Lightstorm LED panels [B&H|Amazon] and recently released A.Lav mic [B&H|Amazon], this is a company that combines engineering, industrial design, keen pricing, and an even keener ear for customer feedback to create tremendous bang for the buck products.

Their just-shipping Array Trans is a two-piece (transmitter and receiver) zero latency, HDMI wireless system. It does not create a high performance hot spot allowing you to use something like an iPad as a monitor,  but it will allow you to remotely display or record a live, uncompressed 1080p signal through an HDMI cable connected to the Array Trans receiver.

There are some qualifiers:

  • Line of sight only – Aputure is clear it does not radiate a 360 degree signal, nor overcome obstacles. The receiver and transmitter must be pointed toward each other, no more than 90 degrees apart.
  • Limited distance only – Aputure lists a range up to 80 meters, but its manual also shows that it will automatically disconnect at 39 meters and require a manual reconnect.
  • Fixed shot only – a corollary to line of sight, this means the Array Trans isn't suited for gimbals, shoulder rigs or Steadicams.

Optimal use? Fixed location cameras or limited range of motion applications like a jib.

As we learn more, we'll share more, so stay tuned.

The Array Trans is available at amazon.com.

Aputure Array Trans

Adobe Photoshop PDF

The unit has a range of 80 meters. Utilizes a 60ghz RF signal with millimeter waves as opposed to a standard 5.4ghz RF signal. Here's the spec sheet on it. There are some limitations, mostly that the unit is line-of-sight and that it can only do HDMI.

Here are the Pros and Cons of 60hz milimeter wave tech:

Advantages are:
– Zero Latency Transmission
– Uncompressed and Lossless Image Transfer
– Supports 1080p 60HZ signal transfer

Disadvantages are:
– 80m range (some other transmission devices are longer for sure)
– Line-of-Sight
– No 360 degree transmission. Transceiver and Receiver need to be facing each other within a 90 degree angle.
– Doesn't do well with motion or obstacles

Learn more about Array Trans.

(cover photo credit: snap from Aputure)

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