Ikegami HDK-97ARRI Debuts at VMA; Delivers for Large-Format, Multi-Cam Needs

The 2013 “MTV Video Music Awards” broadcast featured outstanding moments on-screen, courtesy of Lady Gaga, Bruno Mars, Justin Timberlake and, of course, Miley Cyrus and Robin Thicke. And the massive global viewing audience got an unprecedented look at it all through eight pioneering new cameras from Ikegami as the HDK-97ARRI made its debut during the event that was broadcast from the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, NY on August 25. The HDK-97ARRI is a broadcast-style production camera with digital cinema characteristics and, in a significant development, it makes it possible to employ a large format sensor in multiple camera operation.

“At the VMAs I saw the future courtesy of Ikegami,” says Hamish Hamilton, Director of the 2013 VMAs. “And for all my fellow live multi camera directors and producers I can honestly say that it’s rich in detail, intensely colorful and has a magnificent depth of field.”

JM Hurley, Video Engineer at the VMAs, says that the camera is what those involved with large-format multi-cam shoots have been waiting for. “With its extremely low signal to noise ratio and low light sensitivity the picture seems ‘real,'” he says. “Having the handles to create a ‘LUT’ on top of the ARRI sensor is very exciting and useful for live performances or when post color correction isn’t viable.”

The result of the collaboration between Ikegami and ARRI is an image acquisition system ideal for use in multi-camera studio and field applications, including conventional broadcast camera operation and classic video operator control of multiple cameras. Centered around ARRI’s Super 35mm CMOS sensor with its associated support circuitry, the system provides such cinematic qualities as natural color rendering, exceptional dynamic range, and progressive framerates like 23.98p. Meanwhile, broadcast-grade distribution is enabled with the latest in Ikegami technology, via fiber transmission using up to 2 km SMPTE hybrid fiber/copper camera cable.

The HDK-97ARRI offers a unique convergence of attributes, designed with the latest innovations from both companies including a large-format front end is famed for its film-like, organic look characterized by extended, clean highlights, an extremely low noise floor, natural skin tones, excellent color separation, and a cinematic depth-of-field. Employing large pixels and a custom-designed read-out architecture, this critically acclaimed 35 mm CMOS sensor demonstrates exceptional dynamic range.

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