Earlier this month a small delegation of Dodge College students, alumni, faculty and staff convened in Las Vegas for the annual National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) Show, highlighting the latest and greatest in electronic media. They scoured the exhibit floor for new equipment, software and business connections to ensure Dodge College continues to offer students the best tools the industry has to offer.

Dodge College Associate Deans Michael Kowalski and Dan Leonard share some of their favorites from this year’s conference:

Finally a shotgun microphone with a “brain”!

The Schoeps SuperCMIT 2 U is probably the most exciting piece of sound equipment I have seen at NAB in years. This microphone is a real game changer. Not only is it one of the few digital shotgun microphones in existence, but it uses patented digital signal processing to achieve a very high level of directivity that goes beyond anything previously known.

This new technology recognizes sound energy arriving from various directions, and determines whether that sound has a discrete, persistent direction of arrival or not. It uses this information to suppress diffuse sound (i.e., background noise) and to focus on discrete sound (i.e., dialogue) . This allows the “reach” of the shotgun microphone to be increased significantly, without causing the usual sound-coloring artifacts. The SuperCMIT 2 U is the first microphone in the world to combine such high directivity with high sound quality.

The SuperCMIT 2 U can be a problem-solver wherever diffuse sources of noise (such as street noise, wind noise, room sound, or audience and passers-by) might interfere with a recording. Unwanted noise is greatly reduced in level without altering the tone color of front-arriving direct sound. Even a shotgun with a long tube can’t do that.

We are looking forward to testing this revolutionary microphone with our sound students in the coming weeks! – Michael Kowalski, Professor and Associate Dean, Academic Affairs

SONY upgrades Firmware for the F5 camera an also announced that the F5 would be upgradable to an F55 camera in the Near Future, they also announced an optional AXSR5 hardware recorderupgrade that allows DNxHD or ProRes recording.  SONY also announce the CI platform for collaboration which looks like a pretty cool tool for review and approval.

Avid announced an Avid Everywhere platform that has exciting prospects, it will allow students to collaborate seamlessly from home or at school, mix media on their local drives with proxies that live in the cloud streamed and mixed in real time within Media Composer, with a web based client for producers or directors to review leave feedback and even make simple cuts.  Pro Tools added exceptional collaboration tools, that allow sharing of projects and collaboration down to the track level.

Blackmagic added full editing capabilities to DaVinci Resolve and a slick color matching tool that allows you to get a start on color correction by auto color correction from a Chip Chart in the footage, also some nifty integrated collaboration tools.

URSA Camera By Blackmagic. URSA features a massive 10 inch fold out on set monitor and separate 5 inch screen for settings, camera status and scopes. The camera assist station features a separate LCD screen for camera settings, status and scopes and the audio station features audio meters, controls and audio connections. URSA also includes an upgradable Super 35 4K image sensor with global shutter, 12G-SDI connections, XLR audio inputs with phantom power and dual CFast based RAW and ProRes recorders, interesting at a  6.5K pricetag. 

 AJA Also entered the Camera market with the CION 4K Production Camera, capable of recording both DCI and UHD 4K.  features an APS-C-sized 4K image sensor capable of capturing both DCI and UHD 4K, as well as 2K and HD resolution video. Video is recorded using Apple ProRes 4444 and 422 codecs up to DCI 4K (4096×2160) at 60 fps to AJA Pak media. The camera can also output AJA Raw video at up to DCI 4K at 120 fps, via quad-link 3G-SDI output, and up to 30 fps over Thunderbolt.  Camera was under 10K. – Dan Leonard, Professor and Associate Dean and Chief Technology Officer

From industry connections, exclusive screenings, guest lectures and collaborative cross-cultural filmmaking there is always an opportunity for Dodge College students to hone their craft and develop new skills. These opportunities also apply to staff- and I am grateful to work for an organization that supports my professional growth so that I can continue to deliver unparalleled service to students, faculty, and fellow staff members.

Stay tuned for conference sound bites from members of our technology and production teams as well as current students and faculty!