Issue 25
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18 December 2013

Q-Ball Camera


Remotely controlled pan/tilt/zoom equipment from Camera Corps, a Vitec Group company with long experience in designing speciality camera systems, will track contestants in the (northern) winter 2013 series of the reality television show ‘I’m a Celebrity…Get Me Out of Here!’ on ITV in the UK and channel 3e in Ireland. ITV is producing the programs in full 1080-line high-definition with technical infrastructure supplied by Gearhouse Broadcast.

It’s one of the largest shows in the world, with more than 600 staff working in shifts round the clock for three weeks, transmitted from one of the hottest and wettest locations on the planet, in the tropical rainforest of New South Wales.

Camera Corps will be integrating more than 90 remotely controlled cameras to follow the action inside and around the camp. These include 16 Q-Ball robotic pan/tilt/zoom heads, 20 HD-MiniZooms with infra-red night illumination, 30 MiniShots, 26 Hitachi DKH-32 and three Toshiba IKH-R1. The Q-Ball heads incorporate a 10:1 zoom optics and a low-noise pan/tilt drive with precise speed control which allow the director to request live follow-shots. Cameras are operated from remote pan/tilt/zoom joystick panels located in the control room. Camera Corps Simply SMPTE electro-optical and single-mode fibre links allow HD-SDI from the camera heads to be carried much greater distances than can be achieved over standard copper cable.

One of crew’s tasks is to ensure the local insects and snakes don’t set up home inside the camera housings. The Q-Ball is very effectively sealed against incursions of that kind. Housed in a robust and weatherproof cast-aluminum sphere of similar diameter to a standard Compact Disc or DVD, the Q-Ball head comprises a 1080i camera with 10:1 zoom optics plus a fully rotatable pan and tilt head. High-precision motors enable the operator to adjust the camera angle from practically any location, including smooth adjustment of vertical and lateral tracking speeds.

‘I’m a Celebrity…Get Me out of Here!’ is a reality television series in which celebrities compete, and money is raised for charity. The last remaining celebrity, after others have been evicted, is crowned King or Queen of the Jungle.


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