Case Study: MiroVIDEO DC50

East Midlands TV production company "The Television Business" have used low cost video editing suites to produce infomercial on a...

East Midlands TV production company "The Television Business" have used low cost video editing suites to produce infomercial on a tight budget

Until recently, TVB had used an outside facility company for their editing requirements because it was sceptical about purchasing an on-line or off-line editing system. This was mainly because of the prohibitive price, which would not offer a profitable payback on its investment.

Combined, the miroVIDEO DC50 and miroVIDEO DV300 offered Mark Thatcher, director of TVB, an affordable off-line system with the added flexibility of on-line editing and most importantly, a system, which could be used in-house, at a very affordable price. The combination of a DV and analogue card within the same system did cause some teething troubles, which were primarily caused by slight incompatibility with the PC system in which the cards were housed.

Initially, TVB was concerned that the DC50 was not perceived as a professional system by the industry. It was quickly determined that by capturing from 2:5 to 4:1 for on-line and as low as 10:1 for off-line, that not even the most critical of clients would be able to tell the difference between higher capture rates on the cards.

Both cards have been installed as part of TVB's editing system for two months, and as a result, the company has committed a further 10 thousand pounds to augment the system that will provide them with 94Gb of storage. TVB has also added a DVCAM recorder player, which is successfully being used to firewire digital footage in and out of the system. The DVCAM recorder is controllable via the RS422 port using the PROVTR software, which is bundled with the DC50 and the DV300. Most interestingly, TVB are not using SCSI drives, they have found that fast 7200 Spin Speed IDE AV drives happily exceed the transfer requirements of both the miroVIDEO DC50 and the miroVIDEO DV300.

The have successfully produced an infomercial using the miroVIDEO DC50 and miroVIDEO DV300, and it is currently being aired on the UK Living, Discovery, Home and Leisure, UK Horizons and Trouble! channels. This "long commercial" featured the "Easylife Buggy" made for Screenshop.

Since the installation of the system, TVB has been inundated with work, as it is now able to offer in-house broadcast editing at a price that is half that of its competitors.

Mark Thatcher commented: "We are particularly impressed with the add-ons that come with the cards themselves. PROVTR tools makes controlling any Sony Broadcast product, from Beta SP to DV as easy as plugging in a cable! We were also delighted to find that the DC50 has an on-board colour bar generator, that on its own makes the purchase price of the card worthwhile. Our first on-line featured no less than seven video layers, with all the titles, mattes and fills produced by Title Deko, another useful piece of software that is included with both of the products."

TVB is currently on-lining "Pegasus - The birth of a legend", a documentary on the rebuilding and restoration of an historic railway carriage. The production commenced in October 1998 and the carriage itself is due for completion at the end of 1999. It is anticipated that the documentary will last 60 minutes and it is hoping to secure a transmission slot on the Discovery channel. TVB is currently evaluating a second more advanced suite utilising a miroVideo DC1000 that is likely to be in place by next year.

(c) Louise Matthews - Promote 1999

Will Garside

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