Broadcast Pix Gets Ahead of the Market With 3G-Capable Magma

By Carolyn Braff

It’s not unusual for customers to rave about the products they use, but it is not every day that a customer improves upon a product he uses — for the good of the company that invented it. Drew Kutlik, president/CEO of systems integrator Magic Wave, had been installing Broadcast Pix systems for years before he decided that the product could be even more successful in a compact version.

“I love the Broadcast Pix product, but a lot of people have been asking to have this in a portable version,” he says. “I thought I could fit this into the size of a carry-on bag.”

Kutlik has done just that, creating the Magic Wave Magma. Weighing in at 45 lbs, the portable unit incorporates the Broadcast Pix Slate integrated production system, including its Fluent workflow software. The system includes a 17-in. LCD monitor, detachable keyboard, and the Slate 1000 control panel to maintain the Slate’s I/O functionalities: video switcher, multiviewer, Inscriber character generator, clip and graphic stores, and aspect and format conversion. The semisoft travel case with wheels means the Magma is ready for travel.

“The whole target market was those people who don’t want to have a flight pack or who don’t have the means of transporting a large flight pack,” Kutlik explains. “This is something you could put in the backseat of a compact car, drive somewhere with your cameras, run a few cables, and away you go.”

There is currently one Magma concept unit that has done a few productions in the market. Magic Wave Productions will begin selling Magma through Broadcast Pix Elite dealers in the Americas beginning at the end of June.

As with the Slate G1000, Magma will support Broadcast Pix’s recently announced 3G 1080p system upgrades, even through few events are being produced in 1080p.

“It’s not that people are using 1080p cameras that much yet, but, if you are mixing formats, it does a superior job of mixing formats,” says Broadcast Pix VP of Sales Russell Whittaker. “It also retains the motion benefits of progressive but the pixel count of 1080i. It has very low delay, since everything’s done in one pass, which is crucial for sports.”

As for 3G capability, Whittaker concedes that his company is probably ahead of the market — at least for now: “I do think we’re ahead of the game. I’m not sure for how much longer, though.”

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