Greg Smokler – Teradek – Sci-Tech Award

Greg Smokler is Vice President of Cine Products at Teradek. He grew up in LA, worked as a camera assistant, DP and ICG Local 600 Camera Operator. He was co-founder of Paralinx, the wireless video company, that was acquired by the Vitec Group. Today, Greg is responsible for Vitec’s Creative Solutions Cine business unit, which comprises Teradek, SmallHD, and Wooden Camera. Greg discusses his Sci-Tech Award. read more…

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L-R: Amimon Sci Tech Award honorees: Guy Dorman, Dr. Zvi Reznic, Prof. Meir Feder, Ron Yogev.

 

Feb. 13, 2021. Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Scientific and Engineering Awards (Academy Plaques) honored Dr. Zvi Reznic, Prof. Meir Feder, Guy Dorman and Ron Yogev. They were commended for “For the development of the Amimon wireless chipset, which enables untethered, high-quality on-set, encrypted digital video monitoring with sub-frame latency. 

“By using novel extensions of digital data transmission and compression algorithms, and data prioritization based on error rate, the Amimon chipset supports the creation of systems with virtually unrestricted camera motion, expanding creative freedom during filming.” 

Essentially, if you have a Teradek or ARRI or almost any other wireless video system for motion picture production, there’s an Amimon chipset inside.

Read an FDTimes Amimon special report and company visit after acquisition by Vitec and Creative Solution in November 2018.

Meanwhile, back the the Sci-Tech Awards, Dr. Zvi Reznic replied to some questions.

Dr. Zvi Reznic

Jon Fauer: In a press release, you said, “We would like to thank the Academy for honoring us with this Award. When we started Amimon in 2004 we knew that the challenge of low latency video transmission was high, but we were ready for it. What caught us by surprise was the type of markets that we ended up serving. We started with consumer products and ended up in endoscopy, in drones, and on movie sets, where our technology has made a substantial impact.” Were you aware of the Academy’s Sci-Tech Award as you were developing this product?  

Dr. Zvi Reznic: It is a great honor for us to receive this award. Usually, only the people who develop the technology are aware of its level of sophistication, while the users are simply enjoying its merits. In this case, the Academy realized that what is simply described as “low-latency robust wireless video” encompasses an enormous set of innovations, robustness layers, and creative engineering. We are grateful for that.

We knew that this award existed, but we were still surprised to receive it. When we first met people from the production industry, more than 10 years ago, they told us about the need for wireless video on movie sets. But at that first meeting, they also told us that there were Oscars for technical achievements, and that our technology could be a candidate for such an award in the future. At that moment, we thought that this could be a nice outcome, but later, we totally forgot about it.

Can you please explain why “the type of markets you ended up serving” caught you by surprise?

When we started Amimon, we were focusing on consumer electronics and mainly flat-panel TVs. With flat-panel TVs, people often go to great lengths to hide the video cables and often bury them inside the walls. We provided a chipset that could eliminate these cables.

We had some early successes, including with Sharp, Sony and LG; but we then realized that from a business point of view, there was a better opportunity for us in other exciting markets that can be generally called “professional markets.” These markets include endoscopy, installation, film/TV production, drones and remote machinery.

Did those markets change over the years?

Those market changed over the years. Our first non-CE (consumer electronics) market was endoscopy. This started almost from the very beginning of Amimon when we were approached by Stryker, who has been our customer ever since.  The second one, which is actually adjacent to CE, was installation or retro-fit: replacing an existing cable with a paired video transmitter and video receiver, equipped with an Amimon chipset. And later, when we decided to pivot away from the CE market, around 2012, we focused more on the film/TV production industry through our partners at Teradek and in drones. But the film/TV production industry has been our biggest success, mainly due to our partnership with Teradek.

Where do you think the cinema industry is heading in wireless video?

One change that is already happening is the move from HD (1080p) to UHD (4K). The Amimon chipset, as well as Teradek Bolt systems, already support that.

Without revealing NDA matters, where is Amimon heading?

The next generation of Amimon products extend the zero-latency and high robustness of our existing technology to products running on any IP networks. Our systems will run on any IP network: cellular, WiFi, and the public internet, with close to zero delay. There are endless application for that, including cloud gaming, remote machinery, driverless vehicles, remote production, live events and more.

Additionally, we intend to keep up with the industry in terms of resolution. So when the production industry will be ready to adopt 8K, we will be there with something.


Dr. Zvi Reznic is Amimon Co-Founder and Chief Technology Officer (CTO). He co-founded Amimon in 2004. He received his PhD in Electrical Engineering from Tel-Aviv University, a Masters Degree in Engineering from Cornell University and a BSc from Tel-Aviv University.

Professor Meir Feder is Chair of Information Theory, School of Electrical Engineering, Tel-Aviv University and a Visiting Professor at the department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Sciences at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). He holds an ScD degree from MIT.

Guy Dorman is Amimon’s Algorithms Design Manager. He joined Amimon in 2006. He received a BSc (1997) and M.Sc. (2005) in Electrical Engineering from Technion – Israel Institute of Technology in Haifa.

Ron Yogev is Amimon’s Vice President of Research and Development. He graduated with a BSc in electrical engineering from Ben-Gurion University in 2001.

 

2/13/21 | by Jon Fauer | Leave a comment

Sci Tech Awards to Teradek and Amimon

SCIENTIFIC & TECHNICAL AWARDS 2020 (to be presented Saturday Feb 13, 2021).
Announced today by The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences: February 2, 2021. LOS ANGELES, CA — 17 scientific and technical awards will be presented in a virtual Scientific and Technical (Sci Tech) Awards presentation on Saturday, February 13, 2021 on the Oscars® website beginning at 1 p.m. Pacific Time. You can go to the website now to read summaries of the awards. read more…

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Panasonic LUMIX DC-BGH1

Panasonic calls it a box camera. Perhaps that is too modest a name for the LUMIX DC-BGH1. “Box” reminds me of the first Kodak box camera of 1888. It had a simple fixed lens and lacked controls. “You take the pictures, we do the rest.” Calling the BGH1 a box camera could be like comparing a Jiro (dreams of Sushi) Omakase experience to a box lunch. Yes, the LUMIX BGH1 is boxy on the outside, with sculpturally beveled and rounded edges. It will feel familiar for broadcasting, streaming, multi-cam and IP remote control. But the BGH1 is much more. read more…

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Blackmagic URSA Mini Pro 12K Report

This Special Report about the Blackmagic URSA Mini Pro 12K camera is compiled from several editions of FDTimes. It is a free, printable, 36-page 11 MB PDF download.

The Blackmagic URSA Mini Pro 12K costs less than $10K. It dares to defy a typical engineering riddle—pick any four of six: quality, resolution, easy data wrangling, size, weight, cost. Incredibly, URSA 12K gives you all six.

URSA 12K is a serious camera now shooting seriously stellar Super35 images at an astonishing 79.6 Megapixels per frame (12,288 x 6480) up to 75 fps in 2.39:1 (2.4:1), among many other aspect ratios, frame rates and resolutions. read more…

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SmallHD Indie 7 Monitor

Indie 7 is a new SmallHD 7″ touchscreen monitor, well, for independent filmmakers and many others. Some call it an entry level model, but perhaps that is a bit modest for something so packed with helpful features. This is probably the affordable monitor you’ll want to tame your new KOMODO. Optional software upgrades provide touchscreen camera control of RED KOMODO and DSMC2 cameras. read more…

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FUJINON Premista 19-45 mm T2.9

Jan 14. FUJINON officially launches their new Premista 19-45 mm T2.9 Full Frame zoom lens. This third member of the Premista zoom family was first announced as being in development on Sept 2, 2020. Now it is here and will be released on January 28, 2021 with an online presentation that day (details to follow.) The three FUJINON Premistas cover from 19 mm to 250 mm: 19-45 mm T2.9.   28-100mm T2.9.  80-250mm T2.9-3.5. read more…

FDTimes Jan 2021 in the Mail

The Film and Digital Times January 2021 Print Edition, Issue 106, is now in the mail.

The latest text update v.01.03.21 is online. Still free for all as a 150 PDF. And, the high rez 300 dpi PDF is ready for online subscribers to read or print. read more…

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Vocas Accessories for RED KOMODO

Vocas has a range of compact and handy accessories for the RED KOMODO.

With the side cage as the starting point, you can add components to build a complete cage with different top handles, handles, lens motors, microphone holder, additional 15 mm rods for mounting focus motors and shoulder supports. read more…

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Steven Manios Sr. 1938-2021

Steven Manios Sr., industry legend, optical wizard and former owner and president of Century Precision Optics, passed away on January 3, 2021 from complications of COVID-19. Steve’s fifty-year career in Hollywood was the stuff of legends. He was part of an esteemed group referred to as Hollywood Royalty. Steve innovated and developed many lenses and optical devices. Among these were wide-angle lenses and adapters, swing-tilt and telephoto lenses, extenders, macro attachments and more. Most of these became essential ingredients of camera and lens packages on film and TV productions. read more…

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TILTA Kits for KOMODO

The TILTA Full Camera Cage for RED KOMODO protects the camera and provides 1/4-20 and 3/8-16 mounting threads for accessories. Handgrips attach to industry-standard Hirth-Tooth Rosettes in front and at the back of each side. A cold shoe on top accepts carrying handles. There are numerous configurations. The base of the cage has mounting threads to attach your camera to gimbals, drones and other places where balance is important. Several baseplates attach to the bottom of the cage for lens rods, Arca Swiss and Manfrotto as well as other quick release plates, and underslung battery plates. read more…

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Larry Thorpe on Canon Sumire Primes

This the one and a half year anniversary of our first discussion about Canon Sumire Prime lenses. Since their introduction in April 2019, Sumire Primes have distinguished themselves on features, TV, series, spots, docs, reality and many productions. They are unique at Canon in that products are usually not given names, like Sumire, but rather letters and numbers, like C70, R5, CN-E and K-35. Consider this as the second episode of our Sumire Saga. Larry Thorpe, distinguished Senior Fellow at Canon, discusses Sumire Prime Lenses, scotches rumors about K-35 and vintages, and eloquently explains lenses for formats from S16 to S35 to Full Frame and Resolutions 2K to 12K. read more…

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Teradek Bolt 4K LT

I have been singing the praises of 4K and HDR wireless video on set and location. But there was a concurrent chorus of users who wanted a more affordable alternative. Now Teradek adds their new Bolt 4K LT Transmitter and Receiver to their Bolt 4K line-up. “Bolt 4K LT represents the culmination of a massive effort at Teradek,” said Nicol Verheem, Creative Solutions CEO. “We’ve added considerable technology upgrades without raising the price to the end-user.” What’s this? Same price as previous Bolt 2K models? Why would I want to upgrade? And at half the price of the current Bolt 4K systems, what’s missing? Yes, Bolt 4K LT is the same price as earlier 2K models. You want to upgrade because the image quality and signal range  is greatly improved compared to your older 2K Bolts. But you don’t have to ditch them. For example, you can use them for B camera or second unit. read more…

Cinematography Electronics /i Lens Display

Larry Barton, President of Cinematography Electronics, was on the other end of a Zoom chat in high resolution, with dramatic lighting and Full Frame shallow depth of field. It was time to learn about the Cinematography Electronics /i Lens Display. Larry said: “What we’ve done with our /i Lens Display was to take the iris, focus, focal length and other metadata from the lens—combined with information from the CINETAPE 2—and make the information more user-friendly for focus pullers and lens technicians at rental houses.” read more…

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Panasonic LUMIX DC-S5

The new LUMIX DC-S5 joins Panasonic’s growing line of Full Frame L-Mount hybrid mirrorless cameras that shoot stills and video. A quick review. The LUMIX DC-S1H is still the flagship for hybrid video, with a crisp 5.76 million dot OLED EVF and numerous video choices that include C4K Full Frame 4096×2160 All-I 4:2:2 10-bit 400 Mbps MOV H.265 files internal recording up to 30 fps. The LUMIX S1H has a 24.2 MP sensor. LUMIX DC-S1R has a high resolution 47.3 MP sensor. Both have 5.76 million dot finders. Now, if you want a lighter, smaller, cheaper companion to the S1H, the new LUMIX S5 beckons. It uses the same 24.2 Megapixel Full Frame sensor as the S1H. read more…

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Motion Impossible and AbelCine

AGITO is an exciting, stabilized, modular, remote camera dolly system. Robb Drewett, CEO, and Andy Nancollis, CDO, are the co-founders of Motion Impossible and creators of AGITO. Pete Abel is CEO of AbelCine, with locations in New York, Chicago and Los Angeles. Jeff Lee is Director of Education at AbelCine. read more…

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Band Pro is Angenieux Distributor in Americas

 

Inevitably there is breaking news at the annual Band Pro One World Open House.

This year it was virtual–at 4pm PST on December 10.

Severine Serrano, Managing Director, Angénieux International Sales & Marketing, announced that effective December 10, 2020, Band Pro will be exclusive distributor of the Angenieux brand of products in the US, Canada and Latin America. read more…

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Leitz Henri Directors Finder

Rainer Hercher, Managing Director of Ernst Leitz Wetzlar GmbH (Leitz Cine), said, “The initial concept of Henri was to implement the Leica SL2-S for lens testing. And so, we decided to make our own system as a Director’s Viewfinder for the cine world, especially because the SL2-Sb camera, in my opinion, has the one of the best viewfinders in the business. It’s very good and very sharp. The colors and contrast are excellent. read more…

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Leica SL2-S for Stills and Cine

The new Leica SL2-S launches today, December 10. Think of the “S” after the “SL2-” as “Special” or maybe “Sinematographer” with an “S.” That is because the SL2-S will be specially suited for cinematographers and anyone shooting stills and cine.

The SL2-S has a 24.6 Megapixel sensor inside. (Its sister SL2 has a 47 MP sensor). What is it about 24 MP sensors that puts them inside the Panasonic  S1H and S5, as well as the SIGMA fp? Are these members of the L-Mount Alliance conspiring? What do they know that we should know? read more…

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Grading Ford v Ferrari with Skip Kimball

In last month’s FDTimes, Nicol Verheem (Founder & CEO of Teradek and CEO of Creative Solutions) said, “One of my recent favorite memories was watching Ford v Ferrari with my 12-year- old son. I can remember walking out and he said, ‘First off, that was a really good movie. And second, when can we come back and see it again?’” I saw it again as well and was delighted to get in touch with Company 3’s Senior Colorist Skip Kimball about the film’s impressive grading.Ford v Ferrari was directed by James Mangold. Cinematography was by Phedon Papamichael ASC, GSC. It’s based on the true story of Carroll Shelby (Matt Damon) and Ken Miles (Christian Bale) as they work to win the 24 hour race at Le Mans in 1966. read more…

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