FFV to Develop REV PRO-Based Solution for Tape-Based “SX” Camcorders

Fast Forward Video Inc. (FFV), will collaborate with Grass Valley, to develop a cost-saving retrofit kit for Sony Betacam SX camcorders. The kit is designed to replace the existing tape elements of the standard-definition camcorder with the digital tapeless recording capabilities of the Grass Valley REV PRO digital media drive. Additionally, the REV PRO-SX drive can record in HD or SD, transforming these tape-based SD camcorders into current day HD file-based camcorders with the added benefit of removable digital media.

For tape-based users making the conversion to a file-based infrastructure, REV PRO-SX provides a cost-effective solution and extends the operational life of their camcorders. With the REV PRO-SX retrofit kit, current tape-based SX users will gain all benefits of tapeless digital media acquisition, such as excellent picture and sound recording, file-based storage, tight non-linear editing integration, media cloning, and digital archiving, all provided by the low-cost, removable, and durable REV PRO media.

The retrofit kit’s built-in REV PRO drive replaces the existing Sony proprietary MPEG-based tape elements of the camcorder while converting the signal to digital directly from the CCD image sensor to deliver extraordinary image quality. The REV PRO-SX essentially converts the tape-based camcorder into an almost all-digital, file-based camcorder, supporting tapeless news and production workflows. The device will also scale images to HD, allowing users to continue using their SD camcorders with the added benefit of built-in HD upscaling and recording.

The REV PRO-SX, with HD, will list for $8,995 plus installation and will begin shipping to authorized service centers in Q3.

“We are very pleased to work with Grass Valley in bringing this innovative and cost-effective tapeless, file-based solution to our customers,” said Scott Keating, vice president of sales and marketing for FFV. “The retrofit will allow customers with older SX tape-based camcorders to upgrade to what is basically full digital operation with HD capabilities, all without the cost of replacing their current camcorders.”

This collaborative development effort between FFV and Grass Valley is part of the Grass Valley Open Alliance Partner (OAP) Program and the Grass Valley REV PRO Certification Program. The REV PRO Certification Program includes companies like FFV, which have announced support for the IT-centric removable media and more open and flexible approaches to newsgathering and field production using the Grass Valley Infinity Series of products. The retrofit kit is the first of several planned DVRs by FFV supporting Grass Valley REV PRO media.

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