ALEXA SXT W
ALEXA SXT W is totally wireless. Wireless Video, WiFi and wireless camera/lens control are all built in.
ARRI has integrated a high-quality, low-latency (no delay) HD video transmitter and a WiFi radio into the new ALEXA SXT W model. Having a video transmitter built in makes the camera smaller, lighter and less cluttered than having an external transmitter. Fewer cables is nice because how many times have you rummaged through equipment cases looking for the essential one that you just cannot find? Camera setup can now be quicker, and the AD might even thank you for saving precious production time.
Product Manager Marc Shipman-Mueller explains, “ARRI’s new WVS Wireless Video System transmits uncompressed HD up to 600 m with no delay (< 1ms). The signal includes audio, timecode and Record Start/Stop flags. Up to four ARRI receivers can be used per transmitter.
“The second set of antennas on ALEXA SXT W is for the integrated WiFi radio. It can be used for wireless color management on set, wireless camera remote control using the ALEXA Web Remote, and other interesting apps available now or in development.
“The fifth antenna is dedicated to ARRI’s Electronic Control System (ECS) for WCU-4 wireless lens, focus, iris, zoom and camera control.”
Interference between different radio frequencies has often been a headache, heartburn or worse. The SXT W mitigates that worry.
ALEXA SXT W will replace all previous SXT models. Life gets simpler: there is only one version of SXT W. Existing ALEXA SXT EV and SXT Plus owners can upgrade.
SXT W will be accompanied by software upgrade SXT SUP 2.0, which adds improved HDR monitoring, support for current SxS PRO+ and CFast 2.0 cards, quicker frame grabs, various WCU-4 and lens motor features, and other refinements.
Standalone Wireless Video and Accessories
The ALEXA SXT W is just one part of ARRI’s jump into the world of wireless video. Anyone can benefit from ARRI’s new WVS (Wireless Video System) even if they don’t have an ALEXA SXT W or an ALEXA SXT ready to upgrade.
ARRI WVS consists of a stand-alone video transmitter to be used with other ARRI or third-party cameras. A stand-alone video receiver works both with this transmitter or the one in an SXT W.
ARRI’s accessory team has been busy building an extensive range of mounting brackets, antenna extensions and a handheld Director’s Monitor Support (DMS), as well as a specially adapted Transvideo monitor with a built-in receiver for the ARRI transmitters. It is a modular and flexible system. An extra power-out on the video receiver, for example, permits both the receiver and an attached handheld monitor to work from a single on-board battery.
Here is ARRI’s official press release today, edited for brevity:
ARRI is announcing an upgrade to the ALEXA SXT platform, making ALEXA SXT an entirely wireless motion picture camera system.
To increase efficiency on set, ARRI has integrated a high-quality and low-latency HD video transmitter and a WiFi radio into the new ALEXA SXT W model (“W” for Wireless). Based on the ALEXA SXT Plus, the SXT W will replace the ALEXA SXT Plus and ALEXA SXT Studio models. There are upgrade options for existing owners of ALEXA SXT EV and ALEXA SXT Plus cameras.
In addition, the integrated WiFi radio opens a whole range of options, starting with wireless color management on set and continuing with wireless camera remote control with the ALEXA Web Remote. Other exciting WiFi options are currently in development.
“Our wireless video uses technology from market leader Amimon, with special hardware and software modifications to comply with ARRI’s stringent performance and quality requirements,” says Marc Shipman-Mueller, ALEXA Product Manager. “But that is not all; the wireless video system works harmoniously with ALEXA SXT’s other radio-based offerings – the WiFi and our own proprietary camera and lens control system – avoiding time-consuming interference between the radios on the camera.”
“We are very proud of our joint effort with ARRI on their new wireless ALEXA SXT,” says Ram Ofir, CEO of Amimon. “We worked closely with ARRI’s engineering team on customizing the wireless video modules, adding new features and optimizing performance for ALEXA. I believe that our continued venture with ARRI will be fruitful and yield unique developments in the future.”
“This significant upgrade affirms our commitment to the ALEXA SXT camera platform,” says Stephan Schenk, Managing Director of ARRI Cine Technik and Head of ARRI’s Business Unit Camera Systems. “From the very beginning we have planned various upgrades for the ALEXA SXT platform and I am pleased to now announce a camera that allows a wireless workflow on set.”