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Vision Research Unveils High-Speed Digital Camera for High Definition Broadcast and Entertainment Use

100 Dey Road, Wayne NJ 07470 USA

Contact: Kyle Kappmeier (908) 722-5757
R&J Public Relations

NAB 2009: Booth #C10441

High-resolution images are available for download at the end of the press-release

Vision Research Unveils High-Speed Digital Camera for High Definition Broadcast and Entertainment Use

New Phantom® v12.1 Records Over 6,900 Frames-Per-Second at 720p HD Resolution

LAS VEGAS, N.V., April 20, 2009 – Vision Research, a leading manufacturer of high speed digital imaging systems, announces the Phantom® v12.1, the next generation high-speed digital camera in the company’s v12 series. Like its Phantom v12 sibling, the Phantom v12.1 offers the professional broadcast and entertainment markets unsurpassed performance with an advanced CMOS sensor and blazing speed. At 720p HD resolution, the new Phantom v12.1 can record at a rate of 6,933 frames per-second (fps).
The Phantom v12.1 utilizes a specially designed, 1280×800 high definition CMOS sensor, available in color or monochrome and built specifically for high speed imaging applications. At full resolution, the Phantom v12.1 can record 6,242 fps in a wide aspect ratio, making the camera perfect for high-definition broadcast applications, including slow motion sports replay as well as special effects. At lower resolutions, the camera can go even faster maxing out at 1,000,000 fps at a resolution of 128×8 (optional).
The Phantom v12.1 also features low-noise and unprecedented light sensitivity with an active pixel size of 20 microns coupled with improved quantum efficiency. To eliminate blur and accentuate detail, the camera features sub microsecond shuttering, down to 300 nanoseconds (optional), programmable in 18 nanosecond increments.
New to the Phantom v12.1 is an internal shutter that can be used for shading the lens to perform a session-specific black reference, also known as a current session reference (CSR). During use, the sensitivity of the CMOS sensor’s pixels can drift due to changes in resolution, exposure time and temperature, which can lead to inaccurate color representation and substandard image quality. A CSR calibrates all pixels that will be used for a given set of camera parameters, and sets them to pure black – an important step in ensuring that the Phantom high speed camera delivers the most accurate image possible.
With the new internal shutter on the Phantom v12.1, users no longer have to physically access the camera to perform a CSR. The operation can now be performed remotely or users can program the camera to automatically perform a CSR after every shot. This proves extremely useful especially in situations where the v12.1 would be mounted out of reach or used on a boom.
The Phantom v12.1 supports both 8- and 12-bit pixel depth for maximum detail and clarity, and also boasts Vision Research’s Extreme Dynamic Range (EDR) feature, which allows the user to capture two different exposures within a single frame. The v12.1’s color CMOS sensor is rated at ISO (ISO 12232 SAT) 1600 and the monochrome CMOS sensor is rated at ISO 6400, and for added ease of use and flexibility, the Phantom v12.1 also features auto exposure, which automatically adjusts the camera to adapt to changing lighting conditions.
Eight gigabytes of high-speed dynamic RAM comes standard with the Phantom v12.1, with the option to upgrade to 16GB or 32GB. The high-speed dynamic RAM is also dividable, up to 64 segments, allowing users to record multiple shots, back to back, without having to download data from the camera.
Taking versatility to the next level, the Phantom v12.1 also is compatible with Vision Research’s CineMag™ system. CineMag is a non-volatile, hot-swappable memory magazine that mounts directly to the body of the camera, providing added storage and data protection. Available in 256GB or 512GB, the CineMag gives end users the ability to record full resolution video at a maximum frame rate of 700 fps, directly to the magazine. To record at higher speeds, users can utilize the Phantom v12.1’s onboard memory and then manually or automatically transfer those files to the CineMag at a rate of approximately 1Giga-pixel per second.
CineMags also are designed to work with Vision Research’s new Phantom CineStation™, which streamlines workflow by allowing CineMags to be viewed, trimmed, played over video, and saved to hard disk using an offline docking station rather than the valuable camera asset. The Phantom CineStation is a simple setup that connects to a PC using GigaBit Ethernet. Users simply snap in a CineMag to the CineStation and use the supplied Phantom Video Player (PVP) software to view each cine stored on the CineMag, play the cine files over the dual HD-SDI ports or component video ports, set in- and out-points to trim the cines, and save the files to a connected hard disk drive.
To view recordings immediately, the Phantom v12.1 features a video-out port which users can connect to a component video monitor. The recordings can be displayed in a variety of formats, including NTSC, PAL, SDI and high-definition 720p. The Phantom v12.1 also boasts Vision Research’s proprietary Versatile Dual HD-SDI video out, an extremely beneficial feature for professional sports broadcasting. Users can take advantage of two identical 4:2:2 outputs, independent 4:2:2 outputs where one is live and one is playback, one dual HD-SDI 4:4:4 output, or 4:4:4 playback on the dual HD-SDI while the user has a live image on the component viewfinder.
The Phantom V12.1 is available in two models, either with or without the CineMag interface and in either color or monochrome. The V12.1 base model operates at up to 680,000 fps with a minimum shutter speed of 1 microsecond, and the step-up model can record at up to 1,000,000 fps with a minimum shutter speed of 300 nanoseconds.
Additional information and detailed specifications for the Vision Research Phantom v12.1 can be found at

About Vision Research
Vision Research designs and manufactures high-speed digital imaging systems used in applications including defense, automotive, engineering, science, medical research, industrial manufacturing and packaging, sports and entertainment, and digital cinematography for television and movie production.
The Wayne, N.J.-based company prides itself on the sensitivity, high-resolution and image quality produced by its systems, robust software interfaces, and reliability and versatility of its camera family – all which continue to stand as benchmarks for the high speed digital imaging industry.
Vision Research digital high-speed cameras add a new dimension to the sense of sight, allowing the user to see details of an event when it’s too fast to see, and too important not to™. For additional information regarding Vision Research, please visit

Vision Research is a business unit of the Materials Analysis Division of AMETEK Inc., a leading global manufacturer of electronic instruments and electromechanical devices.
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