DEFINITION January 2022 – Web


I n last month’s issue, we covered the seemingly limitless potential of 5G, which may well be in full effect sooner than we think. It’s almost certain to shake up sets, location shoots and everything in-between, with more powerful connections than ever. But there’s another side to the wireless coin – and that’s the tools themselves. Without the products in place to effectively utilise a signal, it’s all but useless. Unlike 5G, these devices live firmly in the here and now. All areas of the production environment have long had the option of ditching cables and taking to the airwaves. Still, the thought alone can be enough to make even seasoned professionals

camera movement or the use of remote arms. In theory, we could dial in settings, hit record and send the camera wherever we wanted. But what’s equally integral to the shot is focus and broader lens control. For that, a unit such as the Arri Hi-5 is required. Released in July 2021, the task it performs is nothing groundbreaking in and of itself. The level of sophistication it offers first ACs, and its particular means of wireless communication, is far more exciting. Christine Ajayi- Scheuring, Arri’s product manager for the PCA electronic control system, shares some details. “One advancing, new feature is the Hi-5’s exchangeable radio modules, which offer a choice of solutions for different conditions. The RF-EMIP consists of the same radio module built into the Cforce Mini RF lens motor, Alexa Mini LF and Alexa LF cameras. It’s Arri’s latest generation of white radio,” she says. “Next, there’s the RF-2400. If you’re on the same channel and within range, as many devices are, you cannot avoid that signal. So, we decided to provide a frequency- hopping radio module. By not sitting at one fixed frequency, the RF-2400 can maintain a better connection. Plus, being point-to- point, it’s very fast.

shudder. Historically – and we’re not looking too far back here – performance has been patchy, to the degree that an entirely wireless set is far from becoming the norm. Perhaps we’re close, though. Practical and creative benefits are ripe, a new generation of mobile network is upon us and, as you’re soon to discover, a host of innovative kit is ready and waiting. FAR SIGHTING If we’re envisioning a complete wireless set, let’s work from the centre out. Camera is king, so it’s almost unfeasible to imagine displacing the direct human touch, even by a few feet. But it’s done so often – whether for reasons of social distancing, roving handheld

THREE’S A CROWD Arri’s Hi-5 wireless follow focus was designed with three interchangeable radio packs, set to adapt to developing RF environments

55. JANUARY 2022

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