Product Review: Page (1) of 4 - 07/24/05 Email this story to a friend. email article Print this page (Article printing at page facebook

NewTeks TriCaster

Capture, broadcast, edit in one box By Stephen Schleicher

The worst thing about doing a multi-camera live switched remote program is the enormous amount of gear that you have to take along.  TriCaster, the latest technology tool from NewTek, takes all the gear and squeezes it into a little tiny box.  Capture, edit, and broadcast live, TriCaster promises to fulfill the needs of a live truck.

The first thing out of some peoples mouth when they hear about NewTeks TriCaster is, ?What about VT4?  While the Video Toaster 4 system is alive and well, it may be a bit too much machine for most people to handle.  This is especially true when talking about remote productions.  This is where the TriCaster comes in pure portable power.

Live Production
Of the three major features of TriCaster, the Live Production module will be the area where most users will spend their time. After all, the big selling point of the unit is to be able to do a live event without a large truck.

newtek tricaster
A complete TriCaster system. Note: You must purchase a monitor for this system.

TriCaster allows you to connect up to three cameras using either Composite or S-Video connections.  Unless you are using a distribution amp (DA), youll want to pay special attention to the length of the cable to ensure a clean signal.  Still 60 feet should not be a major problem, which means you will be able to set up cameras far enough apart to do just about any event.

If you do have any phase issues, you can easily make adjustments in the camera control panel.  Three cameras may seem to be a limitation for really large events like a high school football game, but when many newscasts can get away with three cameras (or less); this seems to be just right for this tiny box.

TriCaster comes with a variety of Overlay templates that allow you to quickly create stunning professional graphics and lower thirds to drop in to your live broadcast.  In order to change names on a template, all the user needs to do is click on the line of text and enter the new information.

While using templates may seem like the way to go, the major drawback is the font sizes are set.  This means users need to pay careful attention to the text as it could be cut off when supered over a shot.  For a live event, not having a simple Font Size control is a real let down.  The good news is if you are one who has time to jump into a preferences file; NewTek has posted a simple tutorial on their site on modifying the templates to change things like Font, Font Size, color, position, and so on.  Hopefully in the next software release, NewTek will find a way to address this issue and make changing templates much easier.


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Related Keywords:newtek, tricaster, portable switching, editing, live production, remote production, schleicher, video toaster


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