13 December 2023: Ikegami reports a sustained advance towards 2160p 4K-UHD as the globally preferred mastering format among television production companies creating content for linear broadcast transmission and online video-on-demand.

Responding to demand for robustly-built future-proof solutions with a long working life, Ikegami announced the new UHK-X600 multi-format portable camera. The UHK-X600 can be upgraded from HD to UHD via a license-key based option as or when required. Among other license-key based options is support for 2x, 3x and 4x high-frame-rate capture in HD plus optional 4K format (3840×2160/50p) delivering 2000 TVL resolution. Plug-in hardware-based options include a SMPTE ST 2110 compatible media-over-IP interface board and 12G outputs.

“Customers at every level from freelance producers up to large scale media networks are demanding safeguards against what looks like a relentless transition to ever higher mastering and delivery standards,” says Alan Keil, Vice President and Director of Engineering at Ikegami Electronics (USA), Inc. “The license-key option provides the freedom to invest in solutions that most exactly match your current business model without risk of losing a production contract because your equipment is not future proof. 4K-UHD is the logical format for high-budget mastering especially in the USA where ATSC 3.0 offers a potential route for terrestrial and satellite-based 2160p direct-to-home transmission.”

“The license-key option adding high-frame-rate video capture is another big advantage when and where needed for slow-mo sports, wildlife documentaries and the like,” adds Gisbert Hochguertel, Ikegami Europe Product Specialist. “HDR is meanwhile becoming increasingly popular among video streaming services such as Apple TV Plus, Netflix and Prime Video. Given that almost every TV set sold today is UHD-HDR compatible, a growing number of terrestrial and satellite broadcasters now offer HDR content via their online channels. The UHK-X600 comes with Hybrid Log Gamma as standard including the ability to select between BT.2020 and BT.709 colour spaces. Global shutter imagers minimise artifacts when televising LED screen walls or flash/strobe illuminated stage environments.”

The latest extension to Ikegami’s Unicam XE product line up, the UHK-X600 is designed for use in studio or OB applications as well allowing battery-powered over-the-shoulder location production. Incorporating three 2/3-inch CMOS global shutter imagers, it delivers 1000 TVL resolution, minimal aliasing plus a high sensitivity of F11 @ 2000 lux (in 50p mode). Measuring a compact 34 x 24.5 x 15.5 cm (13.4 x 9.6 x 6 inches) and weighing only 5 kg (just over 11 pounds), the UHK-X600 accepts all B4 ENG/EFP-lenses and supports chromatic aberration correction, vignetting correction, ramping compensation and remote control of backfocus when the latter is also supported by the lens. When combined with Ikegami BSX-100 or CCU-X100 control units, the camera optionally supports simultaneous output in UHD and HD video formats.

Ikegami’s UHK-X700 includes the same features as the UHK-X600 plus UHD-frame rate (3840×2160@50p, 59.94p) operation as a standard feature. If required, the UHK-X700 can also operate in 4K/UHD 2x speed or in Full HD format at up to 8x speed.

Among UHK-X700 4K-UHD camera sales highlights during 2023 were system purchases by CERTV, State Radio & Television Corporation of the Dominican Republic, for use in a variety of production roles on the corporation’s Radio Televisión Dominicana channel, RTVD 4. Each UHK-X700 communicates via hybrid SMPTE fiber camera cable from the main RTVD 4 studio floor to an Ikegami BSX-100 UHD/HD multi-format base station located in the production control gallery. “UHK-X700 cameras were chosen based on the reputation of Ikegami equipment for high signal quality, durability and excellent post sale support,” comments Luis Aquino, CERTV’s Director of TV and Radio Technology. “This investment forms part of RTVD 4’s gradual transition to HD program production and digital transmission.”

RE:LIVE Productions, one of Singapore’s leading providers of creative video services, invested in Ikegami UHK-X700 systems. In addition to the cameras, the purchase includes BSX-100 base stations, OCP-300 operating control panels and full-HD VFL701D 7-inch LCD viewfinders plus a 2-inch monocular VFL201D. These are being used in RE-LIVE Productions’ studio projects as well as being made available as part of the rental fleet. “RE:LIVE Productions has operated Ikegami HDK-55 camera systems successfully for the past five years,” comments Yasunori Kanno, President of Ikegami APAC. “They were very pleased to find that we provided consistently strong support. They chose the UHK-X700 cameras as part of an upgrade to 1080p 50/60 high definition. The UHK-X700 systems also provide the resources to create content in multiple formats to match a wide range of customer requirements.”

Ikegami is a leading supplier of high-quality professional broadcast equipment. The Ikegami name is recognized globally for state-of-the-art television cameras, medical cameras and CCTV equipment. World-class CMOS imagery, 4K and 8K technology, multiformat flexibility and unparalleled customer support define the Ikegami experience for users in broadcast, sports venues, mobile production, houses of worship, education, corporate and many more applications.