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ATEM Camera Converter

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Joe Christensen
ATEM Camera Converter
on Apr 22, 2011 at 1:29:05 am

Hello,

How does the ATEM Camera Converter work in a multi-camera production?

I'm trying to understand how multiple Camera Converters can be used on a production where the comm is setup as a party line?

Congrats on the new products. Several of them are on my list.

Thank you,


Joe Christensen
Blaze Streaming Media
LIve Online Productions


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Tom Bassford
Re: ATEM Camera Converter
on Apr 22, 2011 at 3:29:17 pm

The talkback feature on the camera converter is a little strange - I can't see how one would use it in a multicamera system without adding additional equipment.

There are 2 different scenarios depending on if you have an existing talkback system or not.

If you have no talkback currently then you will need an audio distro amp and a basic audio mixer, these both sit with the director, a microphone is plugged into the input of the audio distro amp and the outputs of the audio distro amp are plugged into the mic input of each of the local atem camera converters. The headphones out of each of these local converters is plugged into the audio mixer and the output of this is fed to the directors headphones. At the camera end you just plug the mic and headphones into the atem converter and then your set.

If you have a standard 3 wire PL talkback system then you could set things up as above with a ADA and a mixer, then you would plug the mixer output into a audio input on the comms base station and feed the ADA with the audio output from your comms base station. If your comms base station is too basic to have audio in and out, then you could simply make an adaptor wire to take the audio send and return feeds out of a normal beltpack (this is a simple xlr 4 or 5 pin, whichever your headsets use, to whatever connectors you need on the mixer and ADA)

I you have a lot of beltpacks then you can drop the need for the ADA and mixer by simply using a beltpack with a 4/5pin to 2x minijack connected to each of the local ends of the atem converters.

All of which makes for a bit of a messy system - really your better off using cameras with proper studio cables (26pin / triax / smtp fibre) as not only will you have talkback that is easier to setup and neater, you'll also have proper remote control of iris and black level, universally compatible tally, genlock and returns into the camera viewfinder.

I can't see the ATEM camera converter being a very popular product, at $1000 per camera (2x converters one at each end of the fibre) it's pretty expensive for a product that doesn't have any remote control facilites, and is clearly designed to work with low end cameras. I'm also concerned about the flimsy fibre connector - i could see that breaking very easily.

On the other hand it's quite a cheap* solution for a bidirectional HDSDI / DVI / HDMI sender so it could prove popular for simply sending these hd signals a long distance, it's just the camera specific add ons which seem a little ill thought out.

*go to http://www.telecast-fiber.com/ to see how expensive fibre used to be!


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Kilian Hirt
Re: ATEM Camera Converter
on Aug 9, 2011 at 3:13:28 pm

Hey guys.

At first sight it looks like a pretty handy solution as we quite often need more than HD-SDI distance, Tally and Intercom. I am also sure it would need a custom built-in solution for the talkback feature to work. The plugs might need extra protection at the belt pack, etc. But if you figure this out you might have a quite cost-effective pseudo-professional solution.

My question would be how to use the Tally? Can I use it only in conjunction with the ATEM switchers as it seems to work with certain ancillary data in the SDI stream!?

Cheers,
KH


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Hersh Burston
Re: ATEM Camera Converter
on Aug 12, 2011 at 2:38:14 am

The ATEM Camera Converter will accept Tally information sent down the program line of the ATEM switcher. This is a data packet in the SDI stream which can be read by the converter. The converter has a button to select the camera number to match the camera number being sent from the ATEM Switcher. This can also be setup via the converter utility.

Regards,

Hersh Burston
Senior Product Manager


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Kilian Hirt
Re: ATEM Camera Converter
on Aug 18, 2011 at 10:24:48 am

Hi, thanks for the reply.
So this means it is not possible to use this system with other live Video Switchers? This use of the data packet in the PGM stream is only done by blackmagic?
Cheers,
Kilian


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Hersh Burston
Re: ATEM Camera Converter
on Aug 18, 2011 at 11:14:33 pm

Hi Killan,

This is correct, but we will make the information available so that others can use it as well if they choose.


Regards,

Hersh Burston
Senior Product Manager
Blackmagic Design


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Charles Sanchez
Re: ATEM Camera Converter
on Feb 4, 2012 at 3:47:03 am

I have 2 ATem camera converter them I need to know how can I manage the audio signal analog that I connected to the input of the first and to recieve that audio in the other Converter.

I do not know if that can be possible because each camera converter has connection for audio input in jack type connector but I do not know how can recive the audio signal in the other end .
Please help me as soon as possible


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Charles Sanchez
Re: ATEM Camera Converter
on Feb 4, 2012 at 3:50:09 am

I have 2 ATem camera converter them I need to know how can I manage the audio signal analog that I connected to the input of the first and to recieve that audio in the other Converter.

I do not know if that can be possible because each camera converter has connection for audio input in jack type connector


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Robert Lipop
Re: ATEM Camera Converter
on Jan 20, 2014 at 3:39:50 am

Is this still true? That the data cannot be relayed/sent by a non ATEM switcher? Will the tricaster850 pass this camera number info? Obviously the camera number is created by the camera converter and passed by the atem. When the camera converter sees its own number on program it lights the light. Dogs this work when passed thru other switchers? It would make sense.

Also, the manual implies that the Tally Border only is visible in when the camera is set to view the program input? This cannot be right can it?

On the studio converter v2 there is audio disembedded for each fiber input. Can I choose which pair of audio is disembedded? Or is it locked to 1/2? Or is it only the analog inputs on the camera converter?

Thanks in advance!


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Chad Pearson
Re: ATEM Camera Converter
on Jan 21, 2014 at 9:02:30 pm

Yes this is still true. Blackmagic came up with their own proprietary way to inject custom metadata into the program SDI signal which they use for tally information, and it is up to each camera converter (using buttons on the front panel) to decide which "number" to listen for to light it's tally light. I don't know of any other manufacturer who has gone through the trouble of reverse engineering the custom metadata to enable support for this one-off blackmagic camera converter product.


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Thomas Petzold
Re: ATEM Camera Converter
on Jul 31, 2014 at 3:17:06 pm

Hi Hersh,

where I can find the information? How the tally signal are embedded.

Regards
Thomas Petzold


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aduloju john
Re: ATEM Camera Converter
on Dec 11, 2013 at 2:47:08 pm

pls do i need to make use of splicer tray when am using a longer sdi cable of 100mtrs long or i can make use of the camera converter on both end of the camera and the studio converter to get a perfect signal?


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Ben Harper
Re: ATEM Camera Converter
on Jan 12, 2014 at 5:54:30 pm

Some of these problems can be solved of course by using the Studio Converter. Don't think it was available when you guys were originally posting but now it makes the platform far more useful! Article here about some of the useful features BMD studio converter.


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