Ross Video Launches Mid-Market Carbonite Switcher Series; OB Trucks Up Next

Although Ross Video has seen massive growth over the past two decades, the Canada-based manufacturer of switchers and a variety of other production gear has yet to put its stamp on the outside-broadcast market. However, Ross owner/CEO/CTO David Ross believes that will not always be the case.

“It’s no secret. In North America, Ross, Snell, Sony, and any other [switcher manufacturer] all have the same problem: the freelance operators just prefer to use one brand of switcher,” Ross said in a not so subtle reference to Grass Valley switchers during his NAB press conference. “But where do truck operators come from? They come from universities and news production a lot of the time. That means that all those young operators are learning on Ross switchers right now. If nothing else, it’s simply a matter of time [before we break into the OB-truck market].”

Ross continued on to say his company is seeing major growth in nearly every market, with the exception of OB trucks. “That is the only market that we’re having challenges with right now, and we’re actually starting to make some headway there now.”

The big news for Ross at the NAB Show is the launch of Carbonite, an affordable line of production switchers aimed at mid-market broadcasters.

“We have the small switchers in the CrossOver series, and we have the big switchers in the Vision series. But there is a huge hole in the middle of our market, which is a cost-effective in-between switcher,” says Ross.  “This fills that need.”

A Switcher for the Upper Middle Class
Carbonite relies on the same Multi-Definition Production Engine found in the company’s high-end Vision Octane series of switchers, but in a smaller package. The Carbonite series offers two choices on panel size combined with a 16- or 24-input chassis.

Carbonite 1 is a 1MLE panel with 16 direct-access source buttons, full-panel mnemonics, and Ross PanelGlow RGB buttons. This control surface has direct access to two full MLEs, giving producers the operational benefits of a multi-MLE production in the same physical space as a traditional 1MLE production switcher.

Carbonite 2’s panel features Carbonite’s production engine, with 24 direct-access buttons, full mnemonics, PanelGlow, three-axis joystick, and Ross faders all standard.

Carbonite also includes a browser-based, multi-user GUI that can be instantly accessed from a Mac, PC, or Apple iPad. The GUI provides graphics management for Media-Stores as well as control-switcher setups and remote operation.

Carbonite’s 2RU processing engine includes two multiviewers, four keyers per MLE, four DVE channels, four animation stores, internal synchronization and conversion, and full multidefinition operation.

A 16-input Carbonite 1 is priced at $22,995; a fully loaded 24-input Carbonite 2, at $39,995. Shipments will begin this summer.

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