Slideshow: What’s New in Video Switchers?
A church-focused, gear-based guide to some of the latest switchers
For houses of worship that are considering adding video as a part of their services or are looking to purchase new equipment, one of the first pieces of equipment that needs to be considered is the video switcher. While choosing the format that you will shoot in and the sources that will be used in your video system are important, the switcher is a key consideration that needs to be decided upon earlier rather than later.A video switcher is a piece of equipment that mixes multiple video sources into one or more master outputs. To make it easier to grasp, you can compare a video switcher to what an audio console does; it takes in multiple input sources; the user can apply effects and/or processing; and the unit provides an output. Switchers are normally used for real-time recording, broadcast, or streaming of live events or where multiple sources need to be mixed in real-time and routed to a projector, as opposed to post-production editing.Video switchers are able to create visual effects like mixes or wipes between scenes as well as providing compositing effects where various inputs and graphics are layered to create a single output. Many of today’s switchers are designed to deal with multiple formats where they can accept a wide variety of sources like Serial Digital Interface (SDI) including 3G, HD, or SD; High-Definition Multimedia Interface (HDMI); Digital Visual Interface (DVI); component video; VGA; composite; etc. Among the many options to consider are scalers. Scaling is a vital function required to correctly scale the output based upon the requirements of the display. Also a number of new models even supply graphics and titling as well as audio mixing. While shopping for new video equipment may seem initially daunting, especially if it’s your first time looking at purchasing new equipment, with a little research, a good understanding of what you want, and careful consideration of your options, you can be happy with your final choices. When looking for a video switcher—or any piece of high-tech equipment—take your time and [perform due diligence]. It’s recommended that you speak with AV technicians at other churches similar to your own, as well as get demonstrations from video suppliers or manufacturers. As always, if you have questions or comments about this article, please feel free to drop us a line at: firstname.lastname@example.orgBelow CPM provides basic, wet-your-whistle descriptions of just a sampling of what’s now available. Slideshow above features images.Analog Way | SaphyrSaphyr is a 10x2+1 video output seamless switcher with 16 input plugs, including DVI-D, HDMI and 3G-SDI. It features mixer and native matrix modes and includes key features of the Midra platform: Quick Frame, advanced audio management, and professional effects. Saphyr includes the RCS², an intuitive software interface for fast and easy control. It began shipping in November 2013.MSRP: $15,250(visit link)Barco | PDS Series SwitcherThe Barco PDS series switcher is designed as an easy-to-use, seamless switcher with more digital inputs at an affordable price. Featuring Barco’s renowned scaling technology, the PDS provides simultaneous program output via the DVI, analog and 3G HDSDI connectors. The PDS-902 3G model features four DVI-I inputs, with full HDCP 1.0 support, four analog inputs, one 3G SDI input, and a preview output.MSRP: Contact manufacturer for details. (visit link)
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