The 12 Days of Creative Christmas 2019

This Christmas Season has everyone celebrating in holiday-spirit mode! Even high caliber tech nerds much like us from the broadcast and post-production industry are ready for the holly jolly Christmas up ahead! In staying true with the holiday tradition, I asked Christmas lovers on many of our social media channels: “If you could get a cool production toy this Christmas, then what would it be?” With a little luck and voting, we were able to create our own list of toys for everyone to enjoy! But we don’t plan to take all the credit when good old St. Nick chimed-in and gave everyone a helping hand in presenting our picks. That’s right, twelve different items – one for each day!

It’s an indisputable (and unscientific) fact that a happy and productive creative crew needs fabulous toys like these to be healthy and efficient. We hope you enjoy this and have a holly jolly Christmas!

On the 1st day of Christmas, the RØDECaster Pro Podcast Production Studio, which makes podcasting easy. When I say easy, that is an understatement! The RØDECaster Pro will change the face of podcasting, which has proven nothing short of being the fastest-growing segment in the media industry. Imagine that this holiday season, your dream of creating professional-quality podcasts will become a reality all thanks to this new and powerful platform. What would make a holiday season better than all your dreams coming true? The RØDECaster Pro is a remarkable new direction for RØDE: an all-in-one studio for podcasters of every level.

On the 2nd day of Christmas, the JVC Connected Cam GY-HC900, which is a unique and innovative broadcast camcorder. Want to know why? Read on! This camera is of the highest quality because it makes no compromises when it comes to image quality while equally offering a level of connectivity not found elsewhere. They didn’t include the word “connected” in the name for nothing! The JVC Connected Cam GY-HC900 features three 2/3-inch CMOS image sensors that deliver high sensitivity, low noise, and wide dynamic range. This connected camcorder is equipped with a new powerful communications engine with a streamlined ENG workflow that’s both reliable and cost-effective in making News-over-IP a reality. Boom!

On the 3rd day of Christmas, the CineLight 480 Super Quad from Fluotec, a constant-output BiColor Tunable DMX LED Long Throw Panel soft lighting fixture that has high quality pure white light with interchangeable diffusion and a CCT range from 2700 K to 6500 K. And just when you thought you didn’t need more white (at least in the areas it snows), the CineLight 480 Super Quad features a constant output of pure white light, making it the largest and most powerful luminaire on the market with a light output equivalent to 4 CineLight 120 with no need for a ballast or power supply.  Don’t you “calorie-counters” worry about too much power consumption – the LED technology means this only uses 835w! Go ahead – leave those cookies for Santa!

On the 4th day of Christmas, the AJA Ki Pro GO, a portable multi-channel H.264 recorder that offers up to 4-channels of simultaneous HD and SD recording to off the shelf USB drives with redundant recording capabilities. And why wouldn’t he showcase this marvel? This recorder provides connections to the latest video sources, including cameras. The AJA Ki Pro GO also features AJA’s high-quality de-interlacers on each input so progressive recordings can be made from interlaced inputs, and it is designed to be either portable or rack-mountable with half-rack wide, 2RU high dimensions, which makes it suitable for any environment it is used in.  Don’t fret – Santa has this well-packed on his sleigh!

On the 5th day of Christmas, Blackmagic Design‘s HyperDeck Extreme 8K HDR. Ho-ho-ho!  This product features the HyperDeck’s trusted reliability combined with new innovations like space-saving H.265 files, an optional internal cache, 3D LUTs, native 8K, and HDR support! The HyperDeck Extreme 8K HDR has the ability to record native 8K in H.265, and it provides you the user with reduced storage costs and amazing image quality. Featuring a modern design and traditional controls, the HyperDeck Extreme 8K HDR’s large touch screen ensures a perfect view of your recording as well as control over all deck settings. The HyperDeck Extreme is the perfect solution for the next generation of broadcast, live production, and digital signage!  Too many more features to list! Santa’s exhausted already!  Check it out!!!

On the 6th day of Christmas, the Panasonic AJ-CX4000, a B4 lens mount camera with an interchangeable lens camera recorder that is typical for broadcast use. When it comes to cameras, Santa is no slouch!  The Panasonic AJ-CX4000 is equipped with a large-sized 11MP image sensor and enables high-quality 4K (UHD) image recording with a horizontal resolution of 2000 TV lines (with HDR, compliant with BT.2100 & BT.2020). All this AND 24-bit audio!  Did you hear me?  Of course you did – thanks to this great feature! Four-channel 24-bit LPCM audio recording accompanies the high speed transfer and reliable “expressP2” card or the low running cost “microP2” card (SDXC memory card can also be used) which can be selected for recording media. It also supports the recording of the “AVC-ULTRA” CODEC (HD) from the conventional P2HD Series. UHD 60p/50p 10-bit 4:2:2 output via a 12G-SDI output is also possible.  The LAN terminal, equipped with a lock mechanism (1000BASE-T compatibility), supports NDI|HX connectivity. Transmission and camera control is possible with an IP connection and can be linked to a recording/distribution system combined with Panasonic’s remote camera. Truly a holiday delight!

On the 7th day of Christmas, the NewTek TriCaster Mini 4K. This device can present an audience with the most immersive viewing experience defined by amazing clarity and incredible detail.  And you can take it anywhere; it’s small and lightweight. Set up and get started in 5 minutes. Thanks to this product’s 4 POE ethernet ports and 8 live video inputs, a user can produce programs, performances, events and live sports in the resolution, all the way up to true 4K UHD.  Thanks to the Plug-n-Play NDI®, no external networks are needed. Add your NDI® device and its live.  And the 2 PoE input modules directly connect HDMI devices instantly as NDI® sources.  The best part – you can stream to all your favorite social channels with the push of a button!  So grab a couple of cameras, including your iPhone®, and you’re on your way.  The NewTek TriCaster Mini 4K can help you turn every frame of video into an artistic masterpiece. But don’t try to capture Santa – that’s a no-no and will have you on the naughty list faster than you can imagine!

On the 8th day of Christmas, something else from Blackmagic Design – the ATEM Mini, a low-cost multi-camera live production switcher that makes creating professional multi-camera productions for live streaming to YouTube or innovative business presentations using Skype much easier. By simply connecting your ATEM Mini, you can switch live between 4 high-quality video camera inputs in dramatically better quality images. You can even connect to a computer to present PowerPoint slides or add a gaming console. The ATEM Mini is easy to use and it provides true broadcast-style mix effects switching. To live stream, ATEM Mini has a USB output that works like a webcam, so you can connect to any video software. There’s also HDMI video out for projectors!  Santa doesn’t believe he can make switching any easier!  So, switch now (get it?)

On the 9th day of Christmas, iZotope Dialogue Match, a Pro Tools AudioSuite plugin tool made for re-recording mixers who deliver the final sound mix for films and television programs.  Santa is right along with them – when they say that this is the next indispensable tool for post-production. iZotope Dialogue Match is the first tool to automatically learn and match the reverberant character of dialogue recordings. It does this by reducing the time needed to match dialogue from lavalier, boom mics, and ADR in order to create a seamless and cohesive dialogue performance. The iZotope Dialogue Match features include: Matching lavalier mics to booms, Matching ADR to production audio, Matching localized audio to production audio for screening and streaming in multiple languages. Keep your audience in the moment with seamless dialogue recordings.  Santa’s hooked!

On the 10th day of Christmas, Magewell’s Pro Convert HDMI 4K Plus. Adopting NewTek’s royalty-free NDI® protocol for encoding and transmission, the Pro Convert family easily and reliably converts video signals such as HDMI and SDI into NDI streams. These NDI streams are available to all NDI-compatible software and systems on the same network regardless of physical distance, ensuring high-quality, low-latency, IP-based live production experiences superior to traditional live production solutions.  Santa’s impressed!  The compact unit features a small size of 117.5mm by 66.7mm (4.63” by 2.63”) and 23.4mm (0.92”) thick, weighing only 234g. Tiny as it is, the converter supports HDMI 2.0 signal inputs up to 4K at 60fps 4:4:4 and can encode NDI streams up to 4Kp60 4:2:2.  See the amazing Pro Convert HDMI 4K Plus yourself!  You’ll believe…

On the 11th day of Christmas, the Adobe Creative Residency, a year-long program, which allows for up-and-coming artists to focus on building their dream portfolios. Adobe Creative Residents receive access to the best creative tools and resources, along with guidance from advisors and a compensation package. In return, residents proactively pursue their own personal creative projects while sharing their processes, insights, and inspirations with the community along the way. Each resident is supported with a full salary, health benefits, mentorship, access to Adobe software, speaking opportunities, and other project-specific support to make their vision a reality.  WOW, Santa says: don’t wait!  APPLY HERE

On the 12th day of Christmas, what was surely the greatest gift anyone in the industry could want, and that’s a trip to the 2020 NAB Show. Whoa. Stop the holiday season!  I know the twelfth day of Christmas is January 5th, but what an ending!  From creation to distribution to consumption, across multiple platforms and countless nationalities, NAB Show is where global visionaries convene to bring content to life in new and exciting ways. No one knows media, entertainment or technology like NAB Show and this is THE annual event for those serious about storytelling.  So, let’s all meet in Las Vegas for 4 days to further our careers, gain knowledge, experience cutting-edge training and connect with industry trailblazers. And not just that – NAB is expanding to include Sunday! That’s right – From now on, Sunday is the new Monday. NAB is excited to announce the change of new exhibit days and hours for the 2020 NAB Show. Check out 2020 NAB Show and we’ll see you April 18 – 22, 2020 (Exhibits April 19 – 22).

Twelve gifts, one each for the twelve days of Christmas.  No Lords-a-Leaping, no Ladies Dancing, and definitely no swans-a-swimming!  So, put your chestnuts into that open fire and get them a-roasting!  It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas. One thing, though, I’d like to exclaim, before I go outta sight – a Merry Christmas to you all, and to all a good sight!

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Editor-In-Chief, Publisher at Broadcast Beat Magazine, LLC.
Ryan started working in the broadcast and post production industry at the young age of twelve! He has produced television programs, built large post production facilities, written for some of the industry's leading publications and was an audio engineer for about ten years. Ryan previously wrote for Broadcast Engineering Magazine, Creative COW and his projects have been featured in dozens of publications.
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