September 27, 2010

Light-mounted wireless camera link

RF Central has unveiled a small, energy efficient wireless camera transmitter using MPEG-4 compression that can be mounted on a light.

The MicroLite HD COFDM transmitter is designed to fit on the back of a Litepanels Micro on-camera LED light (both companies are part of the Vitec group), to take up as little room on the camera as possible, although it can also be used separately.

The transmitter is integrated using a dedicated bracket that allows it and the light to be mounted in a camera hot shoe.  The package has been designed for use with any compact HD-SDI camera, most of which would need an additional bracket to be added to take a normal transmitter.

It takes HD-SDI/SDI or composite input. The MPEG H.264 transmitter uses a DVB-T compliant bit rate and may be used with any compliant receiver, such as RF Central's own MicroLite HD receiver, or other RF Central and Nucomm diversity receivers, when paired with an external MPEG-4 decoder. It uses H.264 main profile, which allows a 30% bit rate reduction over encoders operating at the baseline profile, or higher quality video at the same bit rate. In its standard configuration the delay is 200ms, but a low delay option will be available.

It operates in 6, 7 or 8MHz bandwidth for video and embedded audio, and the efficiency of MPEG-4 compression enables "very high quality HD in a very small transmission space," said a spokesperson.

Typical power consumption should be less than 12 Watts with a 12-volt power source.  The unit’s standard output power is 100mW, although it can also be operated in a 20mW low power mode, or up to 250mW. Range is dependent on terrain and the antenna selected by the customer. The unit is offered for use in 2GHz and 5.8GHz bands (other bands on request). The MicroLite HD should start shipping in October.

By David Fox

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