Mark Hanna gives great insight on the Roland VR-4HD high definition AV Mixer and how great it would be for volunteer operators.
Compositing and effects
Effects like downstream keying (DSK), picture-in-picture (PinP), split and quad split are effects that typically require a mix effect (M/E) and therefore are traditionally not seen on smaller switchers. However, the VR-4HD
can do a news-style compositing of background, DSK, PinP for a three-layer composite. The result is much like the shot of the weather guy at your local TV station. The split and quad split are standards from corporate production where multiple people and a PowerPoint presentation need to be seen all at once. The DSK itself is capable of Chroma (blue/green) or luminance (white/black) keying. There is also a suite of video effects like colorize, posterize, negative and monochrome, to name a few.
The firmware update process from some manufactures should be considered a violation of the Geneva Convention. It’s rarely an easy process. One of the first things I had to do for this particular review was to update the firmware to version 1.5 on our Roland VR-4HD
review unit to check out some new software features. The firmware update process was not complicated, nor was it terribly intuitive. Thankfully, the process was well documented and the new firmware expanded the mixer’s capabilities by adding control for still image capture, sending still images from a computer, and it added a size value of 1/3 to the PinP control.
One of the more unexpected features on the VR-4HD was its ability to be remotely controlled. Using the VR-4HD RCS app gives you full control of the console from a computer, touch panel, or other external control device through RS-232C. It also features a D-Sub nine-pin Tally/GPIO connector for sending tally signals or sending and receiving RS-232C control. These features are typically only found on larger production switchers. The fact that they are included on this switcher is a testament to Roland’s commitment to quality and value....
Click here to read the full review on Church Production