Camera Corps highlights Q-Ball success
Camera Corps sold 120 of its Q-Ball HD/SD robotic pan and tilt minicam system systems during 2010. Recent new orders include 33 Q-Ball systems in the USA, 36 in Australia, over 40 in Europe and 20 in South Africa, and it’s been right at the heart of several recent high-profile sports productions.
“We have experienced overwhelming success with the Q-Ball system,” comments Scott Nardelli, chief business development officer of Camera Corp’s US distributor, Bexel. “It is already being used by major players such as ESPN, HBO and NBC in applications as diverse as sports and entertainment capture. At the 2010 World Equestrian Games in Kentucky, Q-Ball was deployed under and on top of structures to capture the event without scaring the horses, something a full-sized camera would simply not be able to achieve.
According to Nardelli, broadcasters like the small form factor, the functionality and the options that Q-Ball provides. And being ultra-compact and weather-resistant, it is a popular choice in tight spaces, in challenging elements or in other areas where a full size robotic camera won’t work.
Sales have been impressive. Australian broadcast service-provider Cutting Edge recently took delivery of 25 Q-Ball systems, increasing to 36 the total number it has purchased in recent months. In South Africa, over 80 Q-Ball were used by Camera Corps itself during coverage of the FIFA World Cup, and 14 systems have been sold for a variety of productions.
Sales have also been strong in Europe where Q-Ball systems have been purchased by ‘some of the largest’ OB facilities and equipment hire companies, right across to Moscow where Camera Corps’ CIS distributor Media Trust is actively involved in supplying equipment to Russian broadcasters.
“Like all the tools we develop, Q-Ball was developed initially to satisfy our own requirements as providers of production equipment and skilled operating teams to cover some of the largest events in the international sports calendar, reality television shows and stage events,” adds Camera Corps founder and managing director Laurie Frost. “We are quite literally our own most demanding customer so we know how important it is to protect a robotic head from homeless insects, from rain, sea-spray and high humidity.”
Q-Ball incorporates a built in 10x zoom optical lens and smooth-accelerating pan/tilt motors in a sturdy 115 mm diameter fully-weatherproof aluminium sphere. A 37 mm thread standard-adaptor 0.7x wide-angle lens adapter is optionally available. Master black level and colour saturation controls allow colour matching with other HD/SD cameras. Q-Ball is fully compatible with all existing Camera Corps robotic control systems and CCU panels. Up to four SDI-embedded audio channels are available to accommodate stereo microphones.