How reliable is your Ursa Broadcast chain

Questions about ATEM Switchers, Camera Converter and everything live!
  • Author
  • Message
Offline

Balazs Kovacs

  • Posts: 27
  • Joined: Wed Aug 22, 2012 12:04 pm

How reliable is your Ursa Broadcast chain

PostWed Aug 28, 2019 6:25 pm

Fellow forum members,

I'd like to know, if anyone is operating their ursa broadcast chains in 4k, and do experience bad connectivity, loss of picture on the fiber, etc?

We are doing now Fiba 3x3 OB in 2160p50, and our experience is that there are random loss of picture for 2-5 seconds on the ccu side, and also there are sometimes issues with returns, which we have to unplug and replug.

The whole system is pretty unstable (compared to the ob-van's panasonic camera chains), and every day there are some random issues (for example today, the iris control of the HJ40x Canon is lost, none of the cameras can control it remotely (the servo works, so it is not a lens issue), and there are tens of random stuff like this.

Also the camera operators are complaining about the slow Return switch (from camera feed to program), not to mention the ccu operator, who lives this event as a complete disaster.

As a bmd dealer, and user I'm ok with the rest of the products, but ursa broadcast chains gives too much headache for us.

So I'd like to ask you to share experience, maybe we just miss something...

Thanks,
Balazs
Offline

pederdingo

  • Posts: 96
  • Joined: Tue Mar 27, 2018 11:30 pm
  • Real Name: Casper Elmose

Re: How reliable is your Ursa Broadcast chain

PostWed Aug 28, 2019 6:50 pm

random loss of picture for 2-5 seconds on the ccu side

This sounds like you are using the stock bnc cables between the camera and the camera converter (the short ones). Try replacing the one from SDI OUT of the camera and see if it makes a difference.

the iris control of the HJ40x Canon is lost

The iris is not always recognised at startup - my experience is that when it gets going after a couple of restarts it stays for as long as the camera is turned on.
Tim Schumann suggests playing with the iris gain (next to the dip-switches) - this hasn't had an impact on my hj40x though, but I think it helped on my HJ22xs.

camera operators are complaining about the slow Return switch

If you have a slow return you can go into the menu and change the reference to "Return" - if it is already set to "Return" you need to set it to "Internal" first and then "Return" - the toggling helps for some reason.

not to mention the ccu operator, who lives this event as a complete disaster

Why does he think it's a disaster?


I can tolerate these issues on my own productions (and there are more issues: tc missing from return, low volume intercom, 100% sidetone from intercom, shutterspeed can't be set to 60 if running 50 from the CCU, ccu can't override the cameras tint etc) because on other points this is such a great setup. Great image, great build quality, great screens and EVFs, alround great - but frustrating that it could be fantastic instead of great with just a few corrections.
Offline

Balazs Kovacs

  • Posts: 27
  • Joined: Wed Aug 22, 2012 12:04 pm

Re: How reliable is your Ursa Broadcast chain

PostWed Aug 28, 2019 7:07 pm

No, we are using our own made cables, instead of the stock ones. THe camera works OK in 3G 1080p50, it is never lost. My thought goes for the tico compression, because of the lost returns issue can correlate with this.

Camera reference is set to program, I will try your suggestion in the morning.

Regarding the iris recognition, we are aware of the initial issue, and the need of the restarts.

CCU operator : the black ring is sometimes really unresponsive, or acts like having contact issues. He really LIKES the layout, and the joystick is far the best in case of quality, and fine movement compared to sony, panasonic, gv. but yes, a lot of things are missing from it. Image is great, that's not a question. We are overcoming the intercom issue with our "hacked" talkback converter 4k. We are generating the return signal with that, so the atem constellation is not playing in the intercom game.


Thanks for your reply.

Balazs
Offline

pederdingo

  • Posts: 96
  • Joined: Tue Mar 27, 2018 11:30 pm
  • Real Name: Casper Elmose

Re: How reliable is your Ursa Broadcast chain

PostWed Aug 28, 2019 7:35 pm

THe camera works OK in 3G 1080p50, it is never lost. My thought goes for the tico compression, because of the lost returns issue can correlate with this

That's out of my tech-league :) but maybe you could test it by setting a smartview 12g in between the camera and cameraconverter to see if only the ccu cuts out?
My 2160p has been working rock solid after switching to 1694f cable (but I haven't tried after 6.4 - I have the feeling that messed up some return stuff)

Camera reference is set to program, I will try your suggestion in the morning.
Yes "program" not "return" - sorry I couldn't remember.
Offline
User avatar

Xtreemtec

  • Posts: 3649
  • Joined: Wed Jan 02, 2013 11:48 am
  • Location: The Netherlands

Re: How reliable is your Ursa Broadcast chain

PostWed Aug 28, 2019 7:39 pm

Indeed your cameras must be on return video reference, Then it is instant AND in sync. Unless your return video is somehow influencent by other gear in between that delay the signal. But direct out from the Aux from a mixer or from a DA running from the mixer it should work in sync with return video.

But you say you "hacked" the intercom by not using the Atem. So i guess you work with an audio embedder in between which will change the sync timing as it will delay the signal a little bit out of phase from the reference timing. ;)
Daniel Wittenaar .:: Xtreemtec Media Productions ::. -= www.xtreemtec.nl =-
4K OBV Trailer, ATEM TVS HD, 1M/E 4K, 4M/E Broadcast Studio 4K, Hyperdeck Studio Mini, Ursa Broadcast 4K, 4K fiber converters with Sony Control
Offline

pederdingo

  • Posts: 96
  • Joined: Tue Mar 27, 2018 11:30 pm
  • Real Name: Casper Elmose

Re: How reliable is your Ursa Broadcast chain

PostWed Aug 28, 2019 7:43 pm

Indeed your cameras must be on return video reference, Then it is instant AND in sync

True, but sometimes the camera hasn't "figured it out", so you have to toggle between "Internal" and "Program" to make it latch. At least one of my cameras does this - I haven't kept track if they all do.
Offline

Balazs Kovacs

  • Posts: 27
  • Joined: Wed Aug 22, 2012 12:04 pm

Re: How reliable is your Ursa Broadcast chain

PostWed Aug 28, 2019 9:11 pm

But you say you "hacked" the intercom by not using the Atem. So i guess you work with an audio embedder in between which will change the sync timing as it will delay the signal a little bit out of phase from the reference timing. ;)


We use the Atem talkback converter 4K, just made a simple hack for the microphone imput, so no additional embedder is used (I've shared that somewhere here in a post)
Offline

Balazs Kovacs

  • Posts: 27
  • Joined: Wed Aug 22, 2012 12:04 pm

Re: How reliable is your Ursa Broadcast chain

PostWed Aug 28, 2019 9:35 pm

pederdingo wrote:
the iris control of the HJ40x Canon is lost

The iris is not always recognised at startup - my experience is
that when it gets going after a couple of restarts it stays for as long as the camera is turned on.
Tim Schumann suggests playing with the iris gain (next to the dip-switches) - this hasn't had an impact on my hj40x though, but I think it helped on my HJ22xs.


Can you please tell me a bit more about it? are you referring the jog dial on the back of the fiber converter, or you are referring this iris gain on the lens?

Thanks,
Balazs
Offline

pederdingo

  • Posts: 96
  • Joined: Tue Mar 27, 2018 11:30 pm
  • Real Name: Casper Elmose

Re: How reliable is your Ursa Broadcast chain

PostWed Aug 28, 2019 9:46 pm

Balazs Kovacs wrote:Can you please tell me a bit more about it? are you referring the jog dial on the back of the fiber converter, or you are referring this iris gain on the lens?


Tim mentions it in this post:
viewtopic.php?f=4&t=92737

On the HJ40 (which is IASD) there is an iris gain potentiometer at the dip-switches when you remove the rubber sealing in the front.
I have to admit I haven't spend much time trying to adjust it perfectly - I mostly tried the far extremes, and the iris is still unstable. It's hard to troubleshoot when it's a periodical error.
Offline

Balazs Kovacs

  • Posts: 27
  • Joined: Wed Aug 22, 2012 12:04 pm

Re: How reliable is your Ursa Broadcast chain

PostWed Aug 28, 2019 10:25 pm

Tim mentions it in this post:
viewtopic.php?f=4&t=92737

On the HJ40 (which is IASD) there is an iris gain potentiometer at the dip-switches when you remove the rubber sealing in the front.
I have to admit I haven't spend much time trying to adjust it perfectly - I mostly tried the far extremes, and the iris is still unstable. It's hard to troubleshoot when it's a periodical error.



Thanks for the info. You know it is strange that it worked without any issues yesterday.[/quote]
Offline

Matt Certa

  • Posts: 140
  • Joined: Tue Jan 26, 2016 5:21 pm

Re: How reliable is your Ursa Broadcast chain

PostThu Aug 29, 2019 12:21 pm

I own 10 fiber chains. The younger guys are usually fine with the quirks, but since the camera and its functions are so out of industry norm, it throws the older guys for a loop. Cam ops cant just walk up to the cam and start shooting like you could with most other brands. IF BM had bothered to ask any one of us what it would take to have a proper broadcast camera chain, right out of the box we would have said a proper intercom solution. Com connected to the lens button, or zoom servo. Fiber connection indicators that actually are accurate. The pigtail bnc's are amatuer. And its been incredibly slow for BM to respond or eventually mention they are attemtping to correct problems.
Offline

pederdingo

  • Posts: 96
  • Joined: Tue Mar 27, 2018 11:30 pm
  • Real Name: Casper Elmose

Re: How reliable is your Ursa Broadcast chain

PostThu Aug 29, 2019 7:24 pm

Yeah, those things should have been though about.
Then again in some aspects I also like that BM doesn't ask people who have been industry forever, otherwise there wouldn't be much innovation to set them aside from the rest of the inbred manufactures.
For example the lemo on the front of the ccu was scuffed at by many engineers - but when you work with it it's the only logical way to do it. It saves space, cables and you can see what the heck you are doing when plugging the cable in.
Another thing is communicating via return SDI - brilliant thought! Two cables and you are up and running with everything.
And the way they push technology like 4k and 8k out like it was no problem at all - it's sort of like the bumblebee that doesn't know it can't fly :) They just do it.

I like their approach to the products and not looking to much at the competition - but if only they used their own equipment a little more themselves, they would see the few shortcomings :D
Offline

Tim Schumann

Blackmagic Design

  • Posts: 419
  • Joined: Tue Oct 23, 2012 6:21 am

Re: How reliable is your Ursa Broadcast chain

PostThu Aug 29, 2019 11:28 pm

We do use our own equipment constantly.

We see the shortcomings and we work on improving them where we can.
Sometimes it takes longer than we would like to get the next update out but we are certainly listening.
Offline

Balazs Kovacs

  • Posts: 27
  • Joined: Wed Aug 22, 2012 12:04 pm

Re: How reliable is your Ursa Broadcast chain

PostFri Aug 30, 2019 7:41 am

Thanks Tim, I know your team is constantly working on improving the softwares for your current product lineup. My only problem is, that it seems, the developement does not follow truly the user feedbacks that are available here on your user forum. For example our Atem Constellation Multiviewer issue which I posted here in the forum got no reply, and I don't think that is a single device fault, or should I just run with every of this issue to the support to get official answers?
Offline
User avatar

Xtreemtec

  • Posts: 3649
  • Joined: Wed Jan 02, 2013 11:48 am
  • Location: The Netherlands

Re: How reliable is your Ursa Broadcast chain

PostFri Aug 30, 2019 8:41 am

Balazs Kovacs wrote:For example our Atem Constellation Multiviewer issue which I posted here in the forum got no reply, and I don't think that is a single device fault, or should I just run with every of this issue to the support to get official answers?


I think BMD could / should make a Focus group With a few of us in there, Under some sort of NDA, were we can bundle strength and pull up big bugs,
We have a few very skilled and broadcast minded people in here that are in the market with years of experience under there belt. Could be a WIN-WIN for both parties..
Daniel Wittenaar .:: Xtreemtec Media Productions ::. -= www.xtreemtec.nl =-
4K OBV Trailer, ATEM TVS HD, 1M/E 4K, 4M/E Broadcast Studio 4K, Hyperdeck Studio Mini, Ursa Broadcast 4K, 4K fiber converters with Sony Control
Offline

Balazs Kovacs

  • Posts: 27
  • Joined: Wed Aug 22, 2012 12:04 pm

Re: How reliable is your Ursa Broadcast chain

PostFri Aug 30, 2019 9:38 am

Xtreemtec wrote:I think BMD could / should make a Focus group With a few of us in there, Under some sort of NDA, were we can bundle strength and pull up big bugs,
We have a few very skilled and broadcast minded people in here that are in the market with years of experience under there belt. Could be a WIN-WIN for both parties..



I would be more than happy to take part, if that would ever happen. What I see here, that it is getting more and more important to give feedback here to the forum, as I'm sure we are not the only one who struggles with different issues, and sharing is caring here now, and if this would go directly to the DEV guys at BMD, that would even have more benefit. For everyone.
Offline
User avatar

Xtreemtec

  • Posts: 3649
  • Joined: Wed Jan 02, 2013 11:48 am
  • Location: The Netherlands

Re: How reliable is your Ursa Broadcast chain

PostFri Aug 30, 2019 11:05 am

Balazs, Don't forget that there is so much info going onto this forum every day.

But what i often do when there are urgent or big things that might need attention, i DM 1 of the moderators. In this matter i filter if i or someone else could easily help, Or there is a real issue. ( have had an occasion were a new FW build that was released that day, locked up devices, Things like that i rather do a direct message then wait for them to read the forum. ;)

But what i think is a small group of technical producers that could advice, but also test and detect if issues from the forum are also found in the focus group.
Because often people say there is an issue with the BMD hardware, but in the end, is a fail on there other used hardware.

But thats me 2 cents.. ;)
Daniel Wittenaar .:: Xtreemtec Media Productions ::. -= www.xtreemtec.nl =-
4K OBV Trailer, ATEM TVS HD, 1M/E 4K, 4M/E Broadcast Studio 4K, Hyperdeck Studio Mini, Ursa Broadcast 4K, 4K fiber converters with Sony Control
Offline

rallymatt

  • Posts: 19
  • Joined: Thu Aug 16, 2018 3:13 pm
  • Real Name: Matt Johnston

Re: How reliable is your Ursa Broadcast chain

PostSun Sep 08, 2019 2:21 pm

Mine haven't been the best. Have 3 cams. Two are now not outputting SDI reliably - so the cams are kinda useless.

At first, Cam A had intermittent SDI output - cutting out to black every few seconds randomly. But only on non Blackmagic devices. Sent that into BM for repair, and they said it was the other equipments fault. Even though the equipment we were testing it in (Newtek Spark, a couple different monitors, Teradek) worked fine on other devices. To be fair, if connected direct to our Atem TVS 4k switcher via SDI it worked fine. Had a tough time understanding that one. Ok, so that stinks.

But now, another cam, let's call it B is doing the same thing. It's doing it when connected to a Blackmagic 12g fiber converter. Tested with other SDI devices (my RED Gemini and Raven) and it works fine. Plug in the Ursa Broadcast, and intermittent black video cutout. Unfortunately this one doesn't work with the Atem now, so it's kinda bricked.

So that's 2/3 cams that have bad SDI in under a year. Not good. I want to love them.
Offline
User avatar

Xtreemtec

  • Posts: 3649
  • Joined: Wed Jan 02, 2013 11:48 am
  • Location: The Netherlands

Re: How reliable is your Ursa Broadcast chain

PostMon Sep 09, 2019 10:10 am

rallymatt wrote:Mine haven't been the best. Have 3 cams. Two are now not outputting SDI reliably - so the cams are kinda useless.

At first, Cam A had intermittent SDI output - cutting out to black every few seconds randomly. But only on non Blackmagic devices. Sent that into BM for repair, and they said it was the other equipments fault. Even though the equipment we were testing it in (Newtek Spark, a couple different monitors, Teradek) worked fine on other devices. To be fair, if connected direct to our Atem TVS 4k switcher via SDI it worked fine. Had a tough time understanding that one. Ok, so that stinks.

But now, another cam, let's call it B is doing the same thing. It's doing it when connected to a Blackmagic 12g fiber converter. Tested with other SDI devices (my RED Gemini and Raven) and it works fine. Plug in the Ursa Broadcast, and intermittent black video cutout. Unfortunately this one doesn't work with the Atem now, so it's kinda bricked.

So that's 2/3 cams that have bad SDI in under a year. Not good. I want to love them.


Tell me some more about your setup! What kind of cable are you using, What length and what datarate/resolution. The Ursa's have some measureable jitter on the output port. The Eye is not as clean as with other hardware, Which results in less cable length and more dropouts when using 12G and use long / not rated cables.
Daniel Wittenaar .:: Xtreemtec Media Productions ::. -= www.xtreemtec.nl =-
4K OBV Trailer, ATEM TVS HD, 1M/E 4K, 4M/E Broadcast Studio 4K, Hyperdeck Studio Mini, Ursa Broadcast 4K, 4K fiber converters with Sony Control
Offline

rallymatt

  • Posts: 19
  • Joined: Thu Aug 16, 2018 3:13 pm
  • Real Name: Matt Johnston

Re: How reliable is your Ursa Broadcast chain

PostTue Sep 10, 2019 4:41 pm

We primarily use the BJC 12G SDI cable with Belden 4504R connectors. Although we've tried pretty much all kinds of BNC cable in our inventory.

Cam is set to 1080p actually also. Have tried in UHD/30 and 60. We can replicate it pretty easily.

Take the URSA broadcast. Plug it into an NDI Spark, a BM 12G fiber converter, a Lilliput SDI monitor, a SmallHD monitor and get occasional dropouts and small artifacts. This is with a 1ft cable. No long run. Just for troubleshooting. Can easily be replicated. Plug it into the ATEM and is fine. Change resolution on the cam and the dropouts seem to change in frequency, but they still happen.

On one of our cams. The only way we can reliably get SDI out of it, is to run the SDI through an Atomos monitor and loop it. It used to work fine into a BM 12G fiber (and then via fiber into a Studio Fiber Converter and then into Atem). But now that's not reliable. Had to swap it out for a BM Studio Cam 4k 2 on a job 2 weeks ago.... Which worked fine - same cables.

On the other one, it works perfectly on everything except a Newtek Spark. Blackmagic blamed it on the Spark since it works on the ATEM.
Offline

pederdingo

  • Posts: 96
  • Joined: Tue Mar 27, 2018 11:30 pm
  • Real Name: Casper Elmose

Re: How reliable is your Ursa Broadcast chain

PostTue Sep 10, 2019 5:13 pm

I have no idea what could be causing this, it seems very weird - especially to experience on multiple cameras.
Here is a few thoughts:

Are you using the return sdi input from atem on the UB? And/or the ref in?

Do you also experience dropouts in 1080i?

I couldn't find info on the spark, but from their specs many NDI products seem to prefer 3G level A - have you tried that?

Have you tried multiple 12g fiber adaptors? And are the SFP modules rated for 3G?

Are you using the cameras in hostile environments with dust and heat?
Offline

rallymatt

  • Posts: 19
  • Joined: Thu Aug 16, 2018 3:13 pm
  • Real Name: Matt Johnston

Re: How reliable is your Ursa Broadcast chain

PostTue Sep 10, 2019 5:37 pm

We're using SDI in while in production. Timecode set to Program. Happened there.

When troubleshooting we're just using SDI out.

Never tried 1080i, have no use for anything interlaced. Will try for troubleshooting, but wouldn't do us tons of good if it worked! Hah.

Tried 3x 12G adapters. SFP Modules are Blackmagic branded 6g modules. Or a couple Fieldcast 12g modules.
Offline

Ian Morrish

  • Posts: 362
  • Joined: Sun Jan 18, 2015 9:24 pm
  • Location: New Zealand

Re: How reliable is your Ursa Broadcast chain

PostFri Sep 13, 2019 8:05 am

URSA Broadcast update announced, available in November!
[*]BMD RAW added
[*]Chromatic aberration correction for B4 lenses.
[*]Remap DTR and Return,
[*]Touch Focus for more lens mounts.
[*]720p on SDI out.
[*]Side Tone adjustments for talk back.
[*]Time Code locked to return feed time code (from ATEM).
[*]Customizable frame guides in display.
[*]Audio meter levels now correct.

Regards,
Ian Morrish
Video Integrated Scripting Environment
(Windows PowerShell with ATEM driver + more)
https://ianmorrish.wordpress.com
Offline

pederdingo

  • Posts: 96
  • Joined: Tue Mar 27, 2018 11:30 pm
  • Real Name: Casper Elmose

Re: How reliable is your Ursa Broadcast chain

PostFri Sep 13, 2019 6:44 pm

Really nice feature updates!
This seems like the final step to make this a true broadcast camera.
And great to have the sensor firmware adjusted as well.

Can't wait to get my hands on it!

Return to Live Production

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Andy Coulthurst and 17 guests