Teradek and SmallHD (both part of Vitec) have joined forces once again! All recent models of OS3 powered SmallHD monitors, including the FOCUS Bolt 500 RX or 703 Bolt are capable of receiving lens data from the Teradek CTRL.1 single axis lens controller. The data is being displayed as an overlay on the screen which is pretty neat and a first in wireless video!
So you’re on a pro shoot and your team involves a dedicated 1st AC (aka focus puller). That’s great but how to avoid having the 1st AC glued to the camera because of one of the following: No wireless video and/or no wireless remote focus control? And even if you have both, he/she will stick around for a glance at the focus scale of the lens.. This seems to be solved now, because with this new firmware update 1st ACs see exactly what’s going on without being anywhere near the lens.
Teradek CTRL.1 Lens Controller
The relatively new Teradek CTRL.1 single axis lens controller (read our article here) offers the aforementioned lens data delivery but you have to purchase that functionality via a paid ($999.95) firmware upgrade. This price is pretty steep and since the device itself is already $1.499.95 (without a motor or any cables!) I really don’t know if this is the right way to go.. But on the other hand the overlay you’ll get once your cash is on the counter is well worth a second thought if you are serious about pro focus work.
When purchasing the lens data delivery firmware upgrade, you’ll get a set of pre-marked focus rings with different minimum focus distances to choose from. How to calibrate your lenses with these rings you ask? Watch the video below for some answers:
You need to install OS3 version 3.4.0 in order to enable this feature on the SmallHD side of things. Once everything is set up nicely, the Teradek CTRL.1 will send lens data to compatible SmallHD monitors. Head over to the Teradek support site for a complete run-through of the setup procedure.
The pre-marked focus rings can be ordered with either imperial or metrical markings. Make sure to choose the correct set for your given lenses.
Teradek and SmallHD claim that these graphical overlays are rendered with virtually zero delay, allowing you to pull focus while keeping your eyes locked to the same display. Available overlays include focal distance, iris, zoom and more. This is pretty nice! And as far as I know this is a first for wireless video. There are wired solutions out there but having a wireless video transmission paired with wireless remote focus control paired with visual feedback is something new. And I think it will make the life of many many AC’s a lot more easy.
If you’re feeling lucky, this might be for you: SmallHD and Teradek are giving away one of their FOCUS 7 Bolt 500 RX monitors /receivers.
All you have to to is to tag 2 friends in the comments of the above post and you have to follow Teradek’s and SmallHD’s Instagram channels. Since I’m not on Insta this is not for me but hey: One competitor less for you! Good luck
What do you think? Is this a major breakthrough in technology or just some eye candy? Share your thoughts in the comments below!