Crystal Vision offers engineers a choice of keying and embedding products at BVE 2014 (Stand E01)

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Crystal Vision will be showing a selection of keying and embedding products for different applications and budgets at BVE 2014, which takes place at ExCeL in London between 25th and 27th February. Products on show on Stand E01 will include a choice of new control options for the Safire 3 real-time chroma keyer, five different ways of adding graphics to suit every station branding budget, and a choice of embedded audio products to satisfy both those requiring a straightforward embedder/de-embedder and those needing the ultimate in flexibility when dealing with embedded signals. 

Crystal Vision will be demonstrating the new range of control options for the Safire 3 real-time chroma keyer – from dedicated control panel to iPad. Ideal for all live virtual productions, Safire 3 works with 3Gb/s, HD and SD sources and features multi-point sampling for easy auto-setup, an extensive range of fine-tuning tools including built-in color correction, and timing adjustments including a frame synchronizer on each input and ten frames of video delay. The recently shipping Safire 3 Controller is a stylish 3U panel able to control any number of chroma keyers over an Ethernet network. Eight hard buttons allow selection of the chroma keyer to be controlled, recall of presets and quick selection between the chroma keyed output, Foreground input and Background input. Additionally, soft buttons on the eight inch touch screen are used in conjunction with physical knobs to access the various intuitive setup menus, which allow the key processing, masks and engineering settings to be configured with ease. The Safire 3 Controller can sit on a desk stand, be fitted into a desk or be rack mounted. 

Browser-based control is the second new control option for Safire 3 – allowing operation by any device that can open a web browser, from PC to iPad or smart phone. The Crystal Vision frame (running software V4.6 or later) features a web server that allows any device to operate the chroma keyer using web-based protocols, with the Safire 3 XML file stored in the frame's front panel. To use this free browser control, the frame housing the Safire 3 module needs to be located on an Ethernet network, with tablet or smart phone control requiring the frame to be on a wireless network. Simply typing the frame's IP address into the web browser will bring up the Safire 3 control menus. To aid intuitive control, Crystal Vision has ensured that the look and feel of the Safire 3 menus when accessed from any device – whether iPad or the Safire 3 Controller – is always very similar. 

Crystal Vision will be showing five new products for adding graphics to a video source – from simple keying to powerful video and audio branding. The first of these is LKEY 3: an affordable, feature-packed and space-saving linear keyer designed for the simple keying of any graphics over 3Gb/s, HD or SD video streams. LKEY 3 brings with it a number of new features appearing on a Crystal Vision linear keyer for the first time: it is the company's first 3Gb/s-compatible linear keyer, and features masks with adjustable edge softness, as well as a frame synchronizer on each input along with an additional ten frames of video delay ideal for matching any big system processing delays. 

The four new versions of the MultiLogo three-layer HD/SD logo keyer are designed for more sophisticated station branding applications. There is a suitable MultiLogo for every budget, with a choice of internal storage (either 4 GB for up to 250 graphics or 8 GB for 500 graphics) and a choice of video inputs (either one or four) – with external AES inputs and outputs and audio and video cross fading additionally available on the MultiLogo 432 variants. Features include numerous key processing controls, look-ahead preview, clip recording and trimming, Quick Text, the ability to store 255 partial presets and relay bypass protection. These new versions of MultiLogo are ideal for video and audio branding applications: they can embed up to four audio groups into their video outputs, with audio mixing allowing this output audio to be generated from a mix of the audio embedded on the video input and a voiceover or sound effect sourced from either the two internal audio stores or from an external AES input. The voiceover or sound effect can be faded in and out and have its level adjusted, while the main program audio can be partially or fully dipped allowing it to be either mixed with or be replaced by the voiceover. 

Crystal Vision will also be showing embedded audio solutions for every application. For engineers who require multiple channels of straightforward embedding or de-embedding where price is an important factor, TANDEM 320 is ideal – with its ability to fit 24 channels of embedding or de-embedding in 2U. Now shipping, the dual channel TANDEM 320 can embed and de-embed into two separate 3Gb/s, HD or SD video streams. Using the 3G-AIP2, 3G-AOP2 and DIOP4 analogue and digital piggybacks, it can be configured as a dual embedder, a dual de-embedder, or a mixed embedder/de-embedder, and can embed or de-embed one group of external analogue audio or two groups of external AES per channel. TANDEM 320 will pass through and route up to four groups of internal audio on each video path and includes flexible audio routing. It features audio gain adjustments, audio re-sampling, channel muting and stereo to mono conversion – while an adjustable audio delay of up to 400ms helps to compensate for system video delays. 

For engineers who need the ultimate in flexibility when dealing with embedded signals, Crystal Vision's flagship embedded audio products become even more powerful with the addition of new features: Dolby encoding and SMPTE 2020 embedding and de-embedding. The TANDEM 310 audio embedder/de-embedder and SYNNER 310 video synchronizer, tracking audio delay and embedder/de-embedder both work with 3Gb/s, HD and SD sources and can embed and de-embed a mixture of up to four groups of AES and two groups of analogue audio at the same time, with full audio routing, audio and video processing, sophisticated Dolby E handling including Dolby decoding, integrated fiber connectivity and flexible delay compensation. 

TANDEM 310 and SYNNER 310 can now encode Dolby E by fitting the DBE-E Dolby encoder top board, which takes in up to four streams of AES audio and associated metadata and produces a single Dolby E stream – ideal for applications such as the output of a studio, an OB vehicle at a sporting event or contribution feeds sent to another broadcaster. The Crystal Vision solution for Dolby encoding is simple, neat and space-saving: it combines the encoding and embedding in a single package which removes the needs for interconnecting cables, takes the syncs from the incoming video rather than from the station reference for simpler system integration, offers flexible routing and allows up to three Dolby encoders to fit in 1U of rack space compared to one standalone product. 

SMPTE 2020 is a way of carrying easily accessible audio metadata in the same data stream as the video and embedded audio, and Crystal Vision is now offering SMPTE 2020 embedding on TANDEM 310 and SYNNER 310 when they are fitted with a DBE-D Dolby decoder and SMPTE 2020 de-embedding when they are fitted with a DBE-E Dolby encoder. The SMPTE 2020 embedding extracts the data from the RS422-format stream coming from the Dolby decoder and puts it into the video stream as required by SMPTE 2020, with the complete range of data quantities supported as well as both the Method A and Method B embedding patterns. The SMPTE 2020 de-embedding takes the metadata from the SMPTE 2020 video and inputs it to the Dolby encoder. 

Based at Whittlesford near Cambridge in the UK and with an office in the USA,

Crystal Vision


digital keyers


picture storage

modules and a full range of interface equipment including





distribution amplifiers


audio embedders

to the professional broadcasting industry worldwide.



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