NAB 2017

NAB 2017: AJA Spotlights Ki Pro Ultra Plus, HDR, Interoperability

AJA Video Systems featured a wide variety of new products for 4K UHD workflows.

Ki Pro Ultra Plus
The new Ki Pro Ultra Plus provides one-, two-, three-, or four-channel simultaneous HD recording up to 1080 50/60p, and full HDMI 2.0 (up to 12-bit capture and output) for 4K UHD workflows. It is suited to recording multicam shoots in HD multichannel mode and 4K UHD recording and playback in single-channel mode.

Housed in a compact, easy-to-operate, standalone 2RU half-rack, Ki Pro Ultra Plus has broad I/O flexibility and connectivity options including 3G-SDI, HDMI 2.0, and various fiber connections. It captures pristine 4K UHD and HD video to widely accepted production codecs, including Apple ProRes and Avid DNxHD MXF.

Ki Pro Ultra Plus

Four channels of HD can be recorded simultaneously as Apple ProRes files, each with different compression profiles, to robust AJA Pak 1000 SSD media. Ki Pro Ultra Plus includes the Ki Protect technology, ensuring that, in the event of power failure or inadvertent withdrawal of a Pak Drive, recently recorded footage is always secure. All four channels can be displayed on the LCD screen as a quad-split during capture for confidence monitoring, and the output can be quad-split over HDMI, SDI, and even on the integrated browser-based web UI during capture.

“What sets Ki Pro Ultra Plus apart is the combination of multichannel HD recording, 4K recording and playback, full HDMI 2.0 support, a full-featured web-based UI for control and configuration, and Ki Protect, providing peace of mind on all productions,” says Nick Rashby, president, AJA Video Systems. “Our Ki Pro family is one of our most popular product lines, and this latest addition adds some of the most requested customer features.”

Ki Pro Ultra Plus will be available soon through AJA’s worldwide reseller network priced at $3,995. AJA’s Pak SSD media is compatible with Ki Pro Ultra Plus and available as AJA Pak256 ($495), AJA Pak512 ($995), AJA Pak1000 ($1,495). Complete information about and features of Ki Pro Ultra Plus are available at www.aja.com/products/ki-pro-ultra-plus.

FS-HDR
Demonstrated as a technology preview, FS-HDR is intended to deliver breakthrough HDR-workflow conversion capabilities. Building on AJA’s flagship FS4 and incorporating the latest HDR technology from Academy and Emmy Award-winning developer Colorfront, FS-HDR provides HDR and wide-color-gamut (WCG) processing and conversion for real-time 4K UHD and 2K HD workflows.

The 1RU, rack-mount, universal converter/frame synchronizer is designed specifically to meet the HDR/WCG needs of broadcast, OTT, postproduction, and event A/V environments, where real-time, low-latency processing, color fidelity, and metadata handling are of paramount importance. FS-HDR’s HDR/WCG capabilities leverage video and color-space processing algorithms within Colorfront Engine, specially licensed by AJA from Colorfront, and developed by Colorfront’s CTO Bill Feighter and Lead Engineer Tamas Perlaki, both of whom are Academy Award winners.

Powered by Colorfront Engine, FS-HDR’s extensive HDR and WCG support will enable real-time processing of 4K UHD and 2K HD, including HDR conversions and 4K UHD HDR downconversion to HD HDR. FS-HDR will also enable conversion of popular camera formats from multiple vendors into the HDR space, plus conversion to and from BT.2020/BT.709, which is critical for the widespread acceptance of HDR alongside SDR in broadcast and OTT workflows.

“AJA’s professional video solutions already provide robust, powerful, and cost-effective video output for our On-Set Dailies, Express Dailies, and Transkoder products,” says Aron Jaszberenyi, managing director, Colorfront. “In choosing the new FS-HDR solution with Colorfront Engine, AJA customers will instantly access many years of Colorfront’s leading-edge research into SDR/HDR and camera-output format conversion, plus a sophisticated tone-mapping toolset, which delivers technically-accurate and visually-pleasing results that retain the creative intent of the original material.”

Pricing and availability details will be coming soon. Complete information and features are available at www.aja.com/family/fs.

New Solutions for IP Workflows
AJA announced new firmware for its KONA IP desktop video and audio I/O card, along with two new IP Mini-Converters, significantly expanding flexibility in IP-based workflows. A new KONA IP license option for JPEG 2000 (2K), a preview of KONA IP firmware for SMPTE 2110, and new IPT-1G-HDMI and IPT-1G-SDI Mini-Converters facilitate flexible and cost-efficient delivery of work to and from creative suites via 1Gb Ethernet.

KONA IP Firmware License for JPEG 2000
The new KONA IP firmware license enables compression/decompression of HD video in real time to/from JPEG 2000 encoded within an MPEG-2 transport stream. Featuring support for TR-01, the update ensures interoperability with other JPEG 2000 systems and devices across the network. It supports three configurations: up to two simultaneous JPEG 2000 outputs, up to two simultaneous JPEG 2000 inputs, or a simultaneous JPEG 2000 input and output to a system running KONA IP. A single KONA IP configuration with the latest Desktop Software v13 installed offers out-of-the-box functionality for Adobe Premiere Pro, Apple FCP X, Avid Media Composer, and AJA Control Room; dual KONA IP configurations are also supported for more-demanding JPEG 2000 workflows for SDK developers.

KONA IP Firmware for SMPTE 2110
Coming soon is the new KONA IP firmware for SMPTE 2110. With support for SMPTE 2110 up to HD rasters, KONA IP will introduce new flexibility for live production by enabling networking with separate essence flows. Broadcasters will be able to synchronize production of audio, video, and ancillary data elements, eliminating the need for embedding/de-embedding to/from SDI while also reducing latency.

IPT-1G-HDMI and IPT-1G-SDI Mini-Converters for IP Workflows
Designed to complement AJA’s line of IP receiver converters, the new IPT products convert HD video to VSF TR-01 (and other JPEG 2000 formats). IPT-1G-SDI provides one 3G-SDI input with a loop through SDI output, and IPT-1G-HDMI has a standard HDMI Type A input. The ability to convert baseband video to JPEG 2000 MPEG-2 transport streams allows a source to be transmitted anywhere on a network and enables IP compatibility with baseband cameras, digital VTRs, routers, and switchers. The IPT-1G-SDI and the IPT-1G-HDMI can be used in conjunction with KONA IP, plus the IPR-1G-SDI and IPR-1G-HDMI Mini-Converters, to streamline video ingest, exchange. and distribution across an IP network, including final reception to displays.

“IP adoption and interest are surging,” says Rashby. “We’re excited to introduce JPEG 2000 and SMPTE 2110 support for KONA IP along with our new IPT Mini-Converters, which significantly expand what’s possible for facilities embracing IP.”

A KONA IP license for JPEG 2000 will be available to purchase soon through AJA’s website for $250 per device. KONA IP firmware for SMPTE 2110 is expected to be available soon as a free download from AJA’s support page. IPT-1G-SDI and IPT-1G-HDMI will be available through AJA’s worldwide reseller network soon for $995 each.

AJA Mini-Converters

New 12G-SDI and Fiber Mini-Converters
AJA introduced Mini-Converters that resolve interoperability and interconnectivity challenges in modern broadcast and pro A/V environments. Include were the 12GDA 12G/3G/SD-SDI reclocking distribution amplifier, 12GM 12G-SDI to/from 3G-SDI muxer/demuxer, and new multi-mode SFP options for its family of FiDO SDI/optical-fiber Mini-Converters.

12GDA 12G/6G/3G/SD-SDI Re-Clocking Distribution Amplifier
12GDA is a miniature 1X6 12G-SDI reclocking distribution amplifier. With support for 12G-SDI for 4K UHD single-link workflows, the format-agnostic device features six separately buffered SDI outputs identical to the recovered input. It also offers automatic input detection, reclocking and cable equalization, and an LED signal-detection indicator in a very compact design.

12GM 12G-SDI to/from 3G-SDI Muxer/Demuxer
12GM is a compact SDI transport converter that enables 12G-SDI–to–quad 3G-SDI and quad 3G-SDI–to–12G-SDI conversion. The muxer/demuxer supports 4K UHD workflows and conversions from multi-link SDI signals to single-link SDI signals, and vice versa at 1.5G, 3G, 6G and 12G bitrates.

FiDO Multi-Mode Fiber SFP Options
In addition to FiDO models that support single-mode fiber, new Multi-Mode SFP options for FiDO Mini-Converters support multimode fiber-optic cable at distances up to 700 meters (OM4) or 300 meter (OM3). The new lineup includes the following model names for ordering with multi-mode SFPs or, when applicable, optional CWDM SFPs: FiDO-R-X single-channel LC fiber to 3G-SDI, FiDO-T-X single-channel 3G-SDI to LC fiber, FiDO-TR-X 3G-SDI/LC fiber transceiver, FiDO-2R-X dual-channel LC fiber to 3G-SDI, FiDO-2T-X dual-channel 3G-SDI to LC fiber, FiDO-4R-X quad-channel 3G-SDI to LC fiber, and FiDO-4T-X quad-channel 3G-SDI to LC fiber.

12GDA and 12GM will be available this summer through AJA’s worldwide reseller network: the former priced at $495, the latter at $895. Multi-mode SFPs are available for order now from the AJA SFP Configurator. More information about 12GDA, 12GM and FiDO Multi-Mode Options is available at www.aja.com/en/category/mini-converters.

Support for Adobe Premiere Pro CC HDR Workflow
AJA announced support for new HDR and JPEG 2000 workflows with the spring releases of Adobe Premiere Pro CC. AJA’s new Desktop Software v13 provides HDR support, which will enable HLG playout from Adobe Premiere Pro with the AJA KONA 4 desktop I/O card or an AJA Io 4K Thunderbolt-enabled I/O device.

Additionally, AJA’s next-generation KONA IP desktop card and new optional firmware, support uncompressed input from JPEG 2000 streams and real-time encoding of JPEG 2000 streams from Adobe Premiere Pro.

New support for HLG affords Adobe Premiere Pro editors using AJA’s KONA 4 or Io 4K hardware more flexibility when working with HDR material. HLG is the latest HDR format gaining wide industry acceptance. Now KONA 4 and Io 4K users can accurately monitor in HDR while using the powerful new workflow tools within Premiere Pro.

The new JPEG 2000 firmware license option for KONA IP enables real-time input/output from/to JPEG 2000, encoded within an MPEG-2 transport stream. Adobe Premiere Pro editors using KONA IP will be able to participate within IP-based JPEG 2000 workflows and connect around the globe with AIMS Broadcast IP interoperability compliance.

“AJA has been a long-standing provider of reliable and flexible companion I/O hardware for our video solutions,” says Sue Skidmore, head of partner relations for professional video, Adobe. “We’re excited that AJA is introducing technology updates that will help our users make the transition to HDR and IP-based workflows.”

Says Rashby, “AJA has also been an early supporter of IP-based post and broadcast ecosystems, and we’re pleased to offer JPEG 2000 capture and playout from Premiere Pro with our KONA IP cards.”

New Desktop Software v13 featuring support for HLG playout from Premiere Pro will be available as a free download from AJA’s support page soon. Optional JPEG 2000 license support for KONA IP will sell for $250, with an availability date to be announced soon.

Free Desktop Software v13 for KONA, Io, and T-
AJA’s Desktop Software v13 for its KONA, Io and T-TAP families of video and audio input/output devices expands HDR and IP pipelines with support for Hybrid Log Gamma (HLG) and JPEG 2000 workflows.

In addition to HDR-10, HLG playout is possible from Adobe Premiere Pro with AJA KONA 4, Io 4K, and KONA IP. New KONA IP firmware for JPEG 2000 brings TR-01–compliant capabilities, which will be available soon as an optional license purchasable from www.aja.com. In addition, Desktop Software v13 offers Linux compatibility in AJA Control Room software for the KONA and Io families, along with several other feature enhancements.

“Our customers are looking for new ways to simplify their 4K and IP workflows, and this software update enhances the functionality of our most popular Desktop products,” says Rashby. “Desktop Software v13 is packed with new features that customers have requested, including the addition of HLG support for HDR workflows and the option to upgrade your KONA IP with new JPEG 2000 support.”

Desktop Software v13 feature highlights include the following:

  • HLG compatibility for HDR workflows, adding HLG playout from Adobe Premiere Pro with KONA 4, KONA IP, and Io 4K
  • Support for a new KONA IP firmware license option for JPEG 2000 workflows (JPEG 2000 firmware for KONA IP is a separate license that can be purchased directly on aja.com)
  • 2-Bit/BT.2020 support in Apple Final Cut Pro X for KONA 4, KONA IP, and Io 4K
  • 4K UHD downconvert for KONA 4 and Io 4K during capture for pass-through to monitors or HD-based offline editorial on a second workstation
  • 48p support for Avid Media Composer with KONA IP, KONA 4, and Io 4K
  • 12-bit ProRes 4444 XQ playback support via free AJA Control Room software for KONA IP, KONA 4, and Io 4K with Adobe Premiere Pro and Apple FCP X

New AJA Control Room software features the following:

  • Linux support for KONA and Io products
  • “Burn-in” option on output for timecode and closed captioning for KONA and Io products
  • Route audio tracks in QuickTime files to desired output/monitor channels with KONA and Io products
  • :30 increase to maximum deck preroll time for the KONA and Io

Desktop Software v13 will be available soon as a free download, along with KONA IP’s JPEG 2000 license option, from AJA’s website: www.aja.com/support.

New KUMO CP2 Control Panel
The new destination-oriented KUMO CP2 control panel for plug-and-play control of AJA’s line of compact KUMO SDI routers. Ideal for broadcast environments, it can be used in standalone or networked configurations for KUMO 6464, 3232, 1616, and 1604.

KUMO CP2 features 80 buttons and enables selection of up to 64 sources and 64 destinations on each of up to four KUMO routers in standalone mode or through a built-in GUI-accessible from any web browser on the network. The affordable control panel is only 1.3 in. deep and easy to install and eliminates the need to use a Shift key on KUMO 1604, 1616, and 3232. It is backed by a five-year warranty.

“Broadcast facilities and OB trucks have come to rely on a standalone control panel to control our KUMO routers,” says Rashby. “Introducing a compact 2RU panel that supports KUMO 6464, 3232, 1616, and 1604 is a natural progression.”

KUMO CP2 will be available soon through AJA’s worldwide reseller network for $895. More information is available at www.aja.com/products/kumo-cp2.