NAB in Review: The Changing Face (and Price) of Production Switchers

SVG by Brandon Costa

Technology vendors exhibiting at the NAB Show make a habit of pointing out that their latest product development is a result of conversations with customers. In no market segment is that more true than in the rapidly changing world of production switchers.

NAB 2013 saw a widely diverse offering of production switchers spanning the gamut of needs and price points. Some even turned heads.

Grass Valley’s Dramatic Shift
Making the most head-turning move was Grass Valley, which introduced the GV Director integrated nonlinear live-production center.

GV Director is aimed at simplifying and streamlining production and distribution of live content across multiple distribution platforms. Just the look of the device suggests a paradigm shift and a very different way of thinking about production. Grass Valley CEO Tim Thorsteinson jokes that it is “a switcher for people with hair on their head.”

GV Director’s touchscreen, traditional switcher buttons, and T-bar controls are designed for experienced technical directors (TDs) and students alike. The software-based tool runs on mostly common hardware components forming a scalable CPU and GPU platform with Grass Valley-designed I/O technology. That makes it very flexible and customizable with virtually unlimited M/E buses, keyers, 2D/3D graphics, localized clip storage, and the ability to handle baseband and file-based sources. read more...

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