Visual EFX is prepared for incoming HDTV and SDTV assignments with EEG’s EN530 HDTV Smart Encoder IV and DI470 Digital Smart Encoder. “If you can’t make a customer’s deadline, you’re going to have a short life as a closed captioning vendor,” says Mike Kuhar, President of Visual EFX. “Closed captioning is usually done at the 11th hour right before a piece of media is due for air, so your system had better be reliable. For projects in both HD and SD, our EEG gear proved easy to learn, easy to use, with total support any time we need it.”
Whether working directly in conjunction with a TV network or receiving media from an independent producer, Visual EFX depends on the efficient workflow that results from having EEG solutions in their equipment rack. “Captioning is a simple process, provided you have the right systems in place,” Kuhar notes. “The dependability of the EEG EN530 and DI470 has proven them to be the correct choice. The EN530 was an important component for us to add when we began gearing up for HD. With all the different flavors of HD that can come through our door, it’s a versatile tool to have on hand for our clients – they know we can accommodate their HD captioning needs, no matter what the format.”
VisualEFX also relies on EEG’s CCPost software package in combination with their EEG encoders, using the powerful CCPlay application which streamlines caption encoding by automatically importing all known closed captioning file formats. “The functionality of CCPlay stands in marked contrast with previous captioning software solutions that required the use of different encoding software for each file format,” comments Philip McLaughlin, President of EEG. “With CCPlay, the operator selects the file and the software automatically imports the caption data, regardless of format. CCPlay also supports the simultaneous encoding of two caption languages from two separate caption files, even if they are different in file format. This is increasingly important since many broadcast networks have moved to provide captions in both English and Spanish. Therefore, coupled with the EN530, CCPlay can efficiently provide simultaneous dual language, HD and SD encoding in a single pass.”
Equally important to Kuhar and his team is EEG’s commitment to customer service, with expert support ensuring that closed captioning remains problem-free. “If we have needs, EEG is always available,” says Kuhar. “We had a lot of questions when we first started offering closed captioning with our DI470 several years ago, and all of our issues could always be resolved with a phone call. Since then, we’ve appreciated knowing that all the support we need is instantly accessible.”
EEG’s EN530 is a universal closed caption encoding solution supporting HD and SD video encoding, decoding and bridging, with myriad applications including video post production and live broadcast captioning from local or dial-up captioning sources. Its independent HD and SD-SDI video paths allow the simultaneous encoding of SD and HD signals as well as caption bridging and upconversion functions. In addition, EEG’s universally supported Smart Encoder command protocol provides compatibility with all commercially available and legacy real-time and off-line captioning software as well as support for native mode EIA 708B captions.
The EEG Model DI470 Digital Smart Encoder has long been recognized as the industry standard for SD Broadcast Closed Caption Encoders. Key features of the DI470 include broadcast quality outputs, by-pass protected for power failure, precise Line 21 waveform digitally synthesized, three Serial Data Ports, one Modem and one VTR control port, an optional second internal modem optional, and LCD status display.
When the post action heats up at Visual EFX, being equipped by closed captioning pacesetters EEG helps the busy facility to keep a cool head. “We’re a service producer, so it’s crucial for us to understand what our customers require from us,” Mike Kuhar concludes. “To be ready for them, you need more than just gear – it has to be easy to use with the support to back it up. With EEG, we’re ready to meet all of our clients’ closed captioning needs.”