First European showing for Camera Corps Stump Cam Version 3, MeerCat and Q3
Camera Corps has chosen IBC2014 as the global launch platform for the latest version of the Cricket Stump Cam which captures dynamic close-ups of major national matches and international tours. “Version 2 Cricket Stump Cam has been in successful use for about five seasons, delivering high-definition images from a camera integrated inside the middle stump at each end of the pitch,” said Camera Corps projects manager Paul McNeil. “Version 3 is the most compact to date, completely housed inside a regulation-gauge cricket stump. This gives users the freedom to place cameras in the mid or outer stumps. Each camera can be configured with a choice of 50 degree, 100 or 128 degree lenses to allow tight, wide or superwide shots.
“The Version 3 Cricket Stump Cam system consists of four cameras; two for each wicket. A classic arrangement is to position one camera with a tight-angle lens facing forward to capture images of the bowler and the oncoming ball. The second camera, fitted with a superwide lens, is then ideally placed to televise the wicket keeper. All four feeds are multiplexed onto single-mode fibre,” said McNeil.
“Version 3 was trialled very successfully throughout the summer 2014 cricket season by a major UK-based satellite broadcaster. It is designed to withstand direct strikes from cricket balls. Top bowlers can accelerate a ball to speeds of more than 90 miles per hour. A fast bowl coming in from one of the run-outs can reach 100 miles per hour. Our cameras received direct strikes from fast bowlers about 20 times during the summer. The only corrective action needed was, on rare occasions, to reset a couple of connectors.”
Version 3 Cricket Stump Camera is available on a dry-hire or wet-hire basis. It comes complete with a Camera Corps Universal RCP panel which allows full remote control of blacks, shutter speed, colour and gain.
Developed in response to demand from sports, reality-television and stage-show producers, MeerCat was first used on air at the April 2014 Thames Boat Race. One camera was mounted inside a thin metal pole at the rear of each boat, providing a forward view. Another was positioned at floor level, looking towards the cox.
The MeerCat head is housed in a metal case with a very small footprint, 30 x 30 mm, and is only 93 mm in height. It can be attached to a quarter-inch mount for easy integration into narrow-profile locations. Lens protrusion is just 25 mm. High-quality NF-mount lenses are available.
MeerCat can also be used as a wearable camera with a full high-definition live wireless link. Full control facilities including manual iris setting with adjustable electronic exposure can be performed remotely using the existing range of Camera Corps joysticks and remote panels.
Camera Corps’ Q3 robotic pan/tilt/zoom/focus camera allows efficient broadcast television coverage from practically anywhere. Fully IP45 rated, it is designed for use in coverage of events such as outdoor and indoor sports, reality shows and live stage performances. Q3 retains the unobtrusive compact spherical housing of its Q-Ball predecessor, allowing easy placement within view of other cameras while retaining full control of vertical and horizontal shooting angles, focal length and focus.
Just 104 millimetres high, 125 mm in diameter and weighing 2.5 kg, Q3 incorporates a 1920 x 1080-native camera with a 2.1 million pixel 1/3 inch RGB Bayer progressive CMOS imager plus motorised pan/tilt/zoom/focus. An enhanced motor drive matches the precise acceleration and deceleration of much larger robotic heads when tracking moving performers on-air. The camera’s integral 20x optical zoom lens can be adjusted from maximum wide (59.4 degrees) to full telescopic (3 degrees) in just 3 seconds. Maximum focus time is 10 seconds.
Q3 can deliver live video in all commonly used HD formats, interlaced and progressive, at up to 60 hertz frame rate. Output signal format can be selected from the operator’s control panel.