Sponsored content from Canon
Canon has a deep history in all areas of the imaging industry, designing and manufacturing our own sensors and optical lens elements, to producing our own Steppers for chip manufacturing. We at Canon take pride in each ‘link of the imaging chain’. Additionally Canon has always been about making high-end imaging available to the masses, whether that was the introduction of the AE-1, the first camera to feature computer controlled automation, the T50 the first SLR to feature an Automatic setting, or the EOS 5D Mark II providing HD video on a full-frame sensor at an incredible price point. Canon has always made premium image quality available to the mass market.
The pandemic years saw shifts in production that Canon was ready for; we saw major broadcast being produced remotely, camera crews implementing robotic rigs and talent remaining at home while control room staff matched images from multiple locations and feeds.
Audiences became more sophisticated as well, as shifts in color, contrast, or depth-of-field were prominently noticed by viewers, as well as framing a shot and camera angles explored new creative options that kept audiences engaged and enthralled. Adaptable imaging solutions like PTZ cameras experienced a surge as they found themselves in a wide range of streaming and broadcast applications from church services, to streaming collegiate sports, even temporary installations for weddings, corporate town halls and commercial shoots.
To complement the Canon cameras already on these shoots, Canon introduced a line of PTZ cameras that match the color, and look of its professional camcorders, and in some cases, leverage the same image sensor and optical glass elements.
Not your Father’s PTZ
“The efficiencies offered by PTZ cameras might have been explored during the pandemic, but they are here to stay,” said, Ricardo Chen, Director of B2B Product Planning. Canon has since introduced five different PTZ models, offering three indoor models as well as two outdoor models, each providing the Canon color science and image flexibility to enhance any production.
Sophisticated audiences, are no longer satisfied with a static shot for a live stream or conference feed. They want multiple angles and viewpoints, slow zoom creeps or juicy wide perspectives capturing the enormity of a venue or location. Producing a stream or broadcast like this normally requires a skilled operator or knowledgeable volunteer at each camera position, and enough space to accommodate both the equipment and operator, without impeding on any on-location audience or viewers. All challenges easily overcome with PTZ cameras as part of your production or feed.
“What we’ve seen as the most successful implementations of our PTZ cameras, have come from the smallest spaces,” remarked Aaron McNally, Manager of B2B Vertical Sales. At Charleston Southern University in South Carolina, Canon PTZ cameras are deployed in one of their gymnasiums to stream both basketball and volleyball games. While previously these streams required camera operators with limited vantage points, the Canon CR-N500 PTZ cameras are able to be placed throughout, without any interference for spectator viewing, and allow a single operator to control and provide multiple camera angles, giving a small production a grand look. Plus, the CR-N500’s match the roaming Camcorders on the sidelines that student operators control, giving audiences at home or streaming in their dorm, an engaging way to watch their school’s games and events.
Another deployment we’ve seen of our PTZ lineup has been in the House of Worship market. Services have always been streamed and broadcast, but with so many congregants at home each institution sought out engaging ways to deliver their messages. And with so many services online, facilities were not just reaching local parishioners but anyone across the country or globe for that matter. The musical performances that are such an engaging part of weekly services also provide opportunity for creative cinematography and viewership. The Salvation Army in Los Angeles employed a host of Canon CR-N500 PTZ cameras to cover not just the church services but also the talented musicians each and every week. The dramatically lit performances have always been engaging for those watching in person, but the addition of multiple PTZ cameras allow the performances to take on new life for those streaming at home.
“Our PTZ cameras not only provide stunning 4K images, and great low-light shots, but we also have two models equipped with outdoor housings for dynamic exterior shots,” mentioned Rich Eilers, National Sales Director, “We have been demoing outdoor PTZ cameras on several campuses who are looking to pair them with roaming Cinema EOS cameras for coverage of baseball, softball, soccer, lacrosse and football games.”
The pairing of PTZ cameras with other Canon equipment has lead Canon down another path, which is control and communication. This past year Canon has introduced its proprietary XC protocol or camera and image control over IP, and during that time Canon has updated the firmware of several camcorders and Cinema EOS camera models, including the EOS C500 Mark II, C300 Mark III and C70, to add XC protocol control to those models as well, providing a fully systemized solution for customers at nearly any budget level.
While fully compatible with various controllers on the market, Canon does offer its own controller, the RC-IP100, which can support up to 100 cameras, with dozens of pre-sets and repeatable control options.
The combination of features and system flexibility like the XC or NDI digital video networking protocol, full IP control capabilities, PoE (power over internet), have placed Canon PTZ in many venues, with more each day, helping each to deliver a big budget look!
Canon U.S.A., Inc. is a leading provider of consumer, business-to-business, and industrial digital imaging solutions to the United States and to Latin America and the Caribbean markets.