Sony's new DSR-70A field recorder/player gains DV playback and an optional FireWire/SDI I/O board.

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Sony To Introduce Network VTRs
Company to focus on IP-based products at NAB

by David Nagel
Executive Producer
[email protected]

Sony says it will introduce networkable video decks at this year's NAB convention in Las Vegas in April. The company says it will also show off a whole slew of IP-based applications and systems, including servers, data systems, cameras, switchers, monitors, newsroom systems and asset management systems, along with new switchers and routers that are switchable between HD ands SD digital formats.

Networking your deck
Information is scant at this point as to any specifics as to the networkable VTR, but, according to Sony documents, the solution seems to be a bridge product called the MSB-2000 ("multi-format stream bridge"), which is scheduled to appear in September of this year. According to one document, the MSB-2000 "provides a bridging function among various devices that support SDTI, SDI and DVB-ASI interfaces, including MPEG VTRs and A/V servers designed for broadcast applications. The MSB-2000 bridges these devices over a network environment with video, audio and control signals implementing in this manner the vision of an MPEG world. The MSB-2000 implements high-quality MPEG stream conversions by a new technology from Sony called 'parameter referring re-encoding.' The MSB-2000 enables content transmission through various networks as well as cost savings in operation by remote control of broadcast equipment. The MSB-2000 helps integrate, in an optimum manner, all operations in the broadcast station by interfacing high quality MPEG streams."

The MSB-2000 multi-format streaming bridge

Interfaces on the device include SDI, SDTI-CP, SDTI-SX for broadcast devices and DVB-ASI for ATM/DS-3 networking devices. For control I/F, it includes 100Base-TX, RS-422 and RS-232C. An optional RTP input/output board will be available "in the near future." Other features include new parameter referring reencoding for MPEG GOP and MPEG Rate conversion with minimum picture quality loss, as well as simultaneous video encoding and decoding via SDI input and output.

The MSB-2000 will be available for $18,000.

Cameras and storage
Sony will also be bringing out its new storage devices, video players and records and cameras at NAB. Highlights include:

  • MAV-777 multi-access video disk recorder, based on the foundation of Sony’s MAV-555 standard definition system. The MAV-777 is based on HDCAM compression technology and disk technology and combines VTR-like control panel operation with the advantages of a disk recorder to provide both linear and nonlinear editing capability. The recorder is expected around October. Typical system configurations will run $94,000 to $131,000.
  • The HDW-2000 series, a new HDCAM studio VTR lineup. The HDW-2000 series consists of the HDW-2000, an HDCAM recorder with HDCAM playback capability; the HDW-M2000, an HDCAM recorder with Sony 1/2" format playback capability for Digital Betacam, MPEG IMX, Betacam SX, Betacam SP and Betacam tapes; and the HDW M2100, a player with 1/2" format capability. The HDW-2000 series provides built-in up-conversion and down-conversion, allowing the different units to be used in both HD and SD operating environments. The three recorders in the line are expected by the end of the year and will cost $40,000 to $60,000.
  • The DSR-70A, an enhanced revision of the DSR-70 DVCAM field editing
    recorder/player. As with the previous model, the DSR-70A has a full range of analog and digital interfaces, search dial function and a built-in 6.4" VGA LCD screen. In addition, the new DSR-70A model now has playback compatibility with DV family formats (25 megabit per second), including consumer DV (SP mode) and DVCPRO, as well as improved editing performance, DMC and an internal signal generator. Also newly introduced is the new DSBK-160A option board, which provides both IEEE 1394 DV I/O and SDI input/output connections on a single option board. It's scheduled for a May release and will sell for $12,500.
  • The HDW-750 HDCAM, a compact, lightweight HD camcorder that can output down-converted signals (with an optional kit), as well as HD-SDI signals without an external adapter. Additionally, Sony will be introducing later this year the HDW-730, designed exclusively for 1080/60i HDTV acquisition. The 750 will be available in May. Pricing was not available at press time.

Sony will be operating out of two spaces (one being a 40,000 square foot demo area) at the NAB convention to show off its new line of IP/video products. NAB will be held at the Las Vegas Convention Center April 23 through 26. For more information on Sony, visit For more information about NAB, visit

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