Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Anycast Test

Below is a list of items that I (Mike Becher) tested with Anycast. I focused on the parts of the unit that we will use most often. I have not tested any of the switcher effects (wipe, picture in picture) or the internal cg. To this point, the only problem that I have with Anycast is convincing my wife that we really need one of these at home. I love it. Everything (inputs, outputs, both audio and video) is mappable/routeable. The only thing that takes getting used to is the way the some of the menu's are structured. Audio, for example, has 3 or 4 different menus that would be more intuitive if they were put together.


Successfully imported several graphic images (.tiff, .tga)

*CG graphics need to be 720x540

* logos need to be 160x240 (make sure 'save transparency' is check when saving alpha)

Switched (cut, dissolve) between 2 Hitachi cameras in studio

-composite inputs 1 & 2 successfully tested


Successfully fed RBG (powerpoint) into input 5 (display needs to be set to 1024x768 or will not show up in anycast) – looked great.


Successfully input pzm mic requiring phantom into input 2

Successfully input shure mixer into input 1

Successfully input DVD video/audio into line inputs 7 & 8.

Successfully recorded program output and isocam 1 to HDD mediapak at the same time – it created 2 separate .avi files. Resolution contained some noise but not bad. Tried to take into Avid/Final Cut. Couldn't open the file on either system. Recorded as .avi in ext3 system format. Sean will burn to cd and I'll try to import into Avid or Final Cut.


Sean open files and placed on FTP. Downloaded files to mediapak. Imported into avid successfully. Both sound and video. Little bit of noise in video. If we decide to use the HDD as a backup, Sean will place a workstation near head-end that runs linux. After recording is complete from Anystream, we'll take the mediapak to this workstation and copy the files to the desktop. When copying is complete, remove ext3 formatted mediapak from the reader and replace with a NTFS formatted mediapak. Copy the files to the NTFS mediapak and take into an Avid suite and import the files using the Mediapak reader.

Successfully test audio inputs 3 – 6.

Successfully tested all audio outputs (program l-r, aux1 l-r, aux2 l-r, mix l-r). Fed tone and wireless mic into Anycast, then alternated tone/wireless mic output to shure mixer, monitored with headphones.

Successfully tested dv inputs and recorded dv program out to shredder 2000 (Steve's favorite deck.) Recorded wireless mic and switched between canon hd, hitachi, and powerpoint recording to mini-dv on shredder 2000. Playedback tape successfully.

Calibrated internal tone reference level to -14.


Mike has started a nice repository of information here as well as test results.

I thought I would add to it with current production experience:

Production: CSCRM Seminar.

Location: Wolstein Auditorium

Scenario: Single Camera shoot, PowerPoint, Intro by Host at Podium, Single Presenter, Q & A

Notes: As you may already know it's a tight fit for shooting behind the seats in Wolstein. However, it lent itself appropriately for side saddle shooting with the Anycast positioned snuggly between me and the camera. The small projector stand (P9) worked nicely as a table for the Anycast to set upon. I used the mediapac as an external drive for primary recording to AVI and did a DVCam iso in the camera with program audio fed from the Anycast. I could have iso recorded this to the mediapak as well as program but sided on being cautious this time out. It was a cool setup. I should have taken a picture. I produced the program record tightly, a couple seconds of the opening PowerPoint slide with a dissolve to the host speaker and then a fade to black at the tail. Then End.

I copied the file (16GB AVI) from the mediapac to the Linux machine desktop and then copied it to the FTP Server Submission watch folder for an apparently seamless workflow to Case TV.

I noticed a considerable improvement in PowerPoint slides.

Here's the link to Anycast Production on 03/12/08:

Here's a comparative link to a similar previous production on 01/09/08:


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