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May 20, 2008

Table of Contents

Cradle to Grave: Funeral Video--Alive and Well
Blu-ray Wins the Format Battle, but Consumers Aren't Buying It
Toon Boom and Automatic Duck Make Editing a Breeze
Despite the Ramp of Blu-ray Drives, DVD Burners Will Continue to Be the Leading Volume Product Until 2012, According to IDC
NewBlueFX Widens Video Effects Offerings to Include Plugins for EDIUS
NewTek Now Shipping Next Generation TriCaster Portable Live Production Systems
Ridata Adds Ultra-Large 32GB Model To Its Ultra-Fast, 233X LIGHTNING Series Of Compact Flash Cards
Disc Makers Offers Falconmedia Pro Recordable Media To Performance-Oriented Customers
MilesTek Introduces New Solid-Core RGB Cable, Digital Video Cable, Connectors, Tools and Kits

Cradle to Grave: Funeral Video--Alive and Well

Recently, I was talking to a fellow videographer who has been taping weddings for more than 20 years. He was complaining about the current state of wedding videography. He said, "Wedding videography is dead." I responded by saying, "Funeral videography is very much alive!" This is much more than a play on words; funeral videography is alive, and has taken on a life of its own. (For a general introduction to funeral videography, see my February 2007 Cradle to Grave column, Opportunities of Funeral Videography.)

Yesterday, I received a phone call from a young man I have been mentoring. He was excited because he had just left an appointment with a funeral director who owns five funeral homes and has decided to start offering videos to his families. I rejoiced with Scott and congratulated him on his new account.

I also smiled inwardly because it was less than a year ago that this same funeral director declared that he would "never offer funeral videos." But, in many ways, he didn’t have a choice. He knew that if he didn’t start offering them, many of his clients would find a funeral home that did. The use of video is rapidly becoming a standard feature at funerals and memorial services.

Using videos at funerals is uncharted territory for many funeral directors. Some are trying to do it themselves, with varying levels of success. Others are providing resources for families that wish to produce their own videos. I believe that if we are to take part in this new opportunity, we need to "think outside of the box" (and not just the "pine box," as one funeral director suggested to me). Instead of seeing ourselves simply as videographers who create tribute videos and videotape services, we need to begin offering our services to the funeral industry as "media consultants."

As media consultants, we can help funeral homes evaluate their audio/video needs, give them choices, and offer training and support. We can also produce promotional videos for their websites and even commercials for TV.

Recently, I was approached by a funeral director who wanted to upgrade the media presentation equipment in his three funeral homes. He had all sorts of questions about the kinds of equipment he should invest in. Price was obviously a factor.

I gave him some general guidelines and helped him through the decision process. As a result, two of his funeral homes now have 40" high-definition television sets with DVD players that will up-convert DVDs to a higher resolution using HDMI cables.

In the third home he has installed a video projector that can be used in the service. He has also added smaller monitors that are used by directors when they meet with families.

To help these homes promote their video services, I created a demo DVD that plays continuously at all three locations so that when families come in they can actually see what a tribute video looks like. It’s amazing how the bookings I get from these homes have skyrocketed since they started using this approach.

I’m also getting more calls from families that want services videotaped. For any seasoned videographer, this is a simple task. But it can also become a very important part of your business.

At almost every funeral we videotape, we find that families order extra DVDs, which makes it very profitable. At one of the last services I videotaped, the family ordered 55 DVDs at $15 each. I would say that was a pretty good morning’s work!

I talked to a videographer recently who was surprised to find out that I also did other types of video production besides funeral work. I explained that although funeral video isn’t the only service we offer, in many ways, funeral videography has become the foundation of all that we do.

Because of funeral videography we have all sorts of work, from commercial work to event shooting. Funeral videography has been one of the best marketing strategies we have tried.

A phone call I received recently is typical of the response we get when people see our work. The lady on the phone thanked me for the special tribute we created for her father and then asked if we did other types of video work. I assured her that we did, and she said, "Oh good—our family has a landscape company and we need a new promotional video as well as video on our website." I look forward to this spring when we will start working with her and her company.

Every time we produce a memorial tribute video, we gain acceptance with families whose lives have been impacted by our videos. As a result, we have never lacked for work. Whether it is doing a video biography, transferring home movies to DVD, or taping a wedding, it all stems from our work in funeral videography, and the way we have positioned our company as a media consultancy in the funeral market. Funeral videography is alive and well—and because of it, so is our business.

Alan Naumann (alan at memoryvision.tv) is the author of The Complete Course on Funeral Videography, an updated an expanded version of his popular Business Everlasting training DVD. A featured speaker at WEVA Expo 2004–7 and a two-time EventDV 25 honoree (2006-7), he is based in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

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Blu-ray Wins the Format Battle, but Consumers Aren't Buying It

While many people expected sales of Blu-ray disc players to spike when Toshiba decided to drop out of the high-definition HD DVD market in February 2008, according to a new Harris Poll, it seems that the recently resolved high definition format war is not motivating consumers to purchase the advanced DVD players any time soon. The Harris Poll® of 2,529 U.S. adults surveyed online between April 7 and 15, 2008 by Harris Interactive found that:

  • Ownership of standard DVD players is practically ubiquitous (87%);
  • Few report owning Blu-ray disc players (4%), Sony PlayStation 3 (5%), HD DVD players (6%) and the HD-DVD drive for the Xbox 360 (1% have external drive while 9% have an Xbox 360);
  • Only nine percent of non-Blu-ray player owners report being likely to purchase a Blu-ray disc player within the next year, even when made fully aware that Blu-ray is considered to be the definitive technology for high definition DVD players going forward;
  • Two-thirds of consumers are familiar with the recently resolved high-definition format war (67%) and seven in ten of them have heard that Blu-ray is the unofficial winner (69%);
  • Nearly a quarter (23%) of those aware of the format war report that they had been waiting for the rivalry to play itself out before purchasing a high definition player, but by April they had yet to do so;
  • Although one-third of consumers report owning a high definition television set (HDTV; 35%), with incidence higher among males (41%) versus females (28%) and rising decidedly with household income (15% for those with less than $35K vs. 53% among those with $75K+), the percentage of HDTV owners likely to purchase a Blu-ray disc player is only 14 percent;
  • Current ownership of Blu-ray disc players among HDTV owners stands at 10 percent.

According to Joan Barten Kline, Vice President of the Harris Interactive Media & Entertainment Practice, "Since Blu-ray disc player pricing averages more than $300, which is well above the cost for the latest generation of standard DVD players with up-converters, Blu-ray disc players may be encountering price sensitivity despite the advanced technology."

Internet Connectivity
Interest in a Blu-ray disc player with Internet connectivity expected to be out in the Fall in a higher price range is also lacking:

  • U.S. adults are more likely to purchase a Sony PlayStation 3 that plays Blu-ray discs and has Internet access for $399 (11%) or an original Blu-ray disc player without connectivity for the same price(10%) versus a new Blu-ray disc player with Internet for $500-$650 (4%);
  • Not surprisingly, the under 40 crowd is most likely to opt for the PlayStation 3 as their Blu-ray capable device of choice – fully 23 percent of those in the 30-39 age group are likely to purchase this device in the next year (compared to 14% likely to buy an original Blu-ray disc player or the new Blu-ray disc player with Internet connectivity 5%)).

What Will Become of the HD-DVD Player?
  • Like the BetaMax loyalists of yore, almost half (45%) of those who currently own an HD DVD player say that they will just continue to use it and continue purchasing HD DVD’s as long as they are available;
  • Another 14 percent of those who currently own an HD DVD player will continue to use it with the HD DVD’s they have already purchased, but do not plan on buying any new ones;
  • An equal proportion of HD DVD player owners (15%) will continue to use it but also plan to invest in a Blu-ray disc player in the future.
Methodology
The Harris Poll® was conducted online within the United States between April 7 and 15, 2008, among 2,529 adults (aged 18 and over). Figures for age, sex, race, education, region and household income were weighted where necessary to bring them into line with their actual proportions in the population. Propensity score weighting was also used to adjust for respondents’ propensity to be online. Because the sample is based on those who agreed to participate in the Harris Interactive panel, no estimates of theoretical sampling error can be calculated. A full methodology and data tables are available here.

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Toon Boom and Automatic Duck Make Editing a Breeze

Emmy award-winning Toon Boom Animation Inc. today announced its partnership with Automatic Duck to bring the editing process to the next level. Toon Boom Storyboard Pro exports animatics in the AAF file format and Pro Import FCP takes them straight into Final Cut Pro, with automated relink of video files and unlimited audio tracks.

The combination of these professional tools enables users to speed up the finishing of their video projects, thanks to a more efficient and advanced use of the animatics during editing.

"Pro Import FCP serves as a bridge between Storyboard Pro and Final Cut Pro. Once the animated storyboards are approved, editors can work with enriched animatic files and plan faster the final editing of the projects. We are proud to deliver technology compatible with such a powerful plug-in that will make the editing much smoother," shared Joan Vogelesang, President and Chief Executive Officer at Toon Boom.

A Storyboard Pro-Pro Import FCP bundle is available at $1,099.99 US in the Toon Boom online Store.

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Despite the Ramp of Blu-ray Drives, DVD Burners Will Continue to Be the Leading Volume Product Until 2012, According to IDC

Overall PC market growth, driven by portable PCs, will give the worldwide CD/DVD market a moderately positive outlook in 2008 and lead to increased demand for slim drives. Despite the ramp of Blu-ray drives, DVD burners will continue to be the leading volume product until 2012. However, as the PC market's adoption of DVD burners becomes saturated and increasingly commoditized, Blu-ray adoption will accelerate in 2009 and Blu-ray drives will become the majority of the total market value in 2012.

"DVD burners will remain the bread-and-butter business for ODD vendors," said Wolfgang Schlichting, research director, Removable Storage at IDC. "Despite Blu-ray's win over HD DVD in the format war, Blu-ray drive adoption will be limited in 2008 because of their high price and only moderate consumer interest."

Other market highlights includes:

  • DVD burners continue their race to become a commodity market. Aggressive volume manufacturers will continue to drive down the price, pushing technology leaders out of the mainstream optical disc drive (ODD) market.
  • Blu-ray disc (BD) won the format war over HD DVD, but similar to DVD and DVD burners, Blu-ray will need a three- to five-year ramp to reach mass-market volumes. New affordable BD-ROM drives will lead the way for the BD format's adoption.
  • More than 100 million Blu-ray drives will ship worldwide in 2011, IDC forecasts.

IDC's study, Worldwide Blu-Ray, DVD, CD, and Other Optical/Removable Storage Drive 2008–2012 Forecast and Analysis (IDC #211992) analyzes the worldwide Blu-ray Disc, HD DVD, CD-ROM, DVD-ROM, CD-R/RW, combo, and DVD-Rec drive markets. Market value, unit shipments, drive prices, regional analysis and market share are provided. Additionally, unit shipments are analyzed and forecast by slim versus half-height form factor.

www.idc.com

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NewBlueFX Widens Video Effects Offerings to Include Plugins for EDIUS

After its recent release of video effects plugins for the Adobe Premiere Pro, Avid Liquid, Avid Media Composer, Avid Xpress Pro, Pinnacle Studio and Sony Vegas product lines, NewBlue, Inc. continues its widening rollout of video effects plugins by unveiling a host of new effects and transitions for the Thomson Grass Valley™ EDIUS® nonlinear video editing software. EDIUS users can now enjoy 978 presets and 114 effects plugins encompassed in 12 distinct and competitively-priced NewBlueFX collections.

NewBlue’s new effects packages are compatible with the full range of EDIUS software, including EDIUS Broadcast, EDIUS Pro, and EDIUS Neo.

Among the new EDIUS-compatible effects plugins from NewBlueFX are 7 VideoFX collections and 5 AudioFX collections, including NewBlue 3D Effects, NewBlue 3D Transformations, NewBlue Art Blends, NewBlue Art Effects, NewBlue Equalizers, NewBlue Essentials, NewBlue Film Effects, NewBlue Motion Blends, NewBlue Motion Effects, NewBlue Production Tools, NewBlue Scrubbers and NewBlue Sound Benders.

Known for their ease-of-use, clean design and immense variety of video and audio filters, NewBlueFX provides video editors Hollywood-style effects at accessible prices. More importantly, NewBlueFX are designed to deliver video editors quick, innovative techniques that bring a distinct look to video productions large and small.

Explains Melissa Jordan Grey, NewBlue’s chief strategic officer, "EDIUS users are video professionals with no time to waste. They expect the highest quality results in the smallest amount of time and NewBlueFX delivers on those expectations 100%. We’re thrilled to provide NewBlueFX to this distinctive community."

NewBlue’s effects plugins for the Thomson Grass Valley EDIUS consists of two main categories, VideoFX and AudioFX. In the VideoFX plugins collections, users will find plug-ins that provide artistic techniques, such as air brushing, pastel sketching and line drawing, as well as motion effects, such as earthquake, spin blur, wiggle and zoom. Features of the AudioFX collections run the gamut from audio filtering, such as equalization, noise reduction and compression to creative sound manipulation tools, such as "Insectoid," "Buzz" and "Robot Fog."

Included in the VideoFX category are 7 plugin collections:

  • NewBlue 3D Explosions, 180 presets in 13 different plugins that introduce creative new ways to blast a scene into pieces. Plugins include: Blow Apart, Bouncing Cubes, Bouncing Frames, Box Explode, Confetti, Grid Fall Away, Grid Explosion, Intensity Grid, Plane Explode, Spiral, Spiral Rotation, Vortex, and Wiggle. ($119.95 USD)
  • NewBlue 3D Transformations, 165 presets in 13 high energy transitions breaks creative ground with new ways to slice, fly and reassemble a scene with every technique. Plugins include: Box Fold, Checker Board, Comb, Flip, Fly Away, Louver Grid, Louvers, Magic Carpet, Page Turn, Pizza Boxes, Rotating Frames, Spiral Bounce, and Twist. ($119.95 USD)
  • NewBlue Art Blends, 101 transitions in 10 specialized video effects that shift images through unique, stunning graphics filters. Plugins include: Color Melt, Color Wash, Contrast, Duochrome, Glow, Halo, Metallic, Shiny Fog, Sketch, and Vivid. ($119.95 USD)
  • NewBlue Art Effects, 99 effects in 10 specialized video filters that shift video into a visually stunning alternate reality. Plugins include: Air Brush, Colorize, Color Melt, Dream Glow, Duochrome, Ghost, Hand Drawn, Line Drawing, Metallic, and Pastel Sketch. ($139.95 USD)
  • NewBlue Film Effects, 81 presets in 5 dynamic filters that recreate the inexact mechanics of hand cranked cameras, dirty projectors, and decades sitting in film vaults. Plugins include: Film Camera, Film Damage, Film Express, Film Look, and Film Pro. ($159.95 USD)
  • NewBlue Motion Blends, 112 transitions in 10 specialized video effects that twist, turn and transmogrify video from one scene to the next. Plugins include: Liquify, Roll, Shake, Shear, Shredder, Smear, Spin, Twirl, Wave, and Zoom. ($119.95 USD)
  • NewBlue Motion Effects, 99 effects in 10 specialized video filters that add movement to images in a number of ways. Plugins include: Active Camera, Earthquake, Motion Blur, Ripple, Rolling Waves, Shear Energy, Spin Blur, Warp, Wiggle, and Zoom Blur.

Included in the AudioFX category are 5 distinct VST-compatible plugin collections:
  • NewBlue Equalizers, 9 specialized audio filters that boost or cut ranges of tone in a specialized manner. Plugins include: Adjust Highs, Adjust Lows, Graphic EQ, Parametric EQ, Remove Highs, Remove Lows, Tone Eliminator, Filter Sweep, and Swirl. ($59.95 USD)
  • NewBlue Essentials, 8 standard audio processing tools that make any soundtrack complete. Plugins include: Chorus, Delay, Distortion, Echo, Flange, Phaser, Reverb, and Slap Back. ($59.95 USD)
  • NewBlue Production Tools, 11 must-have effects to boost the clarity and performance of video soundtracks. Plugins include: Sharpener, Stereoizer, Monofier, Bass Boost, Crisper, Compactor, Sound Expander, Dual Compressor, Tone Compressor, Dual Expander, and Tone Expander. ($59.95 USD)
  • NewBlue Scrubbers, 6 powerful, easy-to-use audio repair techniques. Plugins include: Audio Polish, Cleaner, Auto Mute, Background Fader, Hum Remover, and Noise Reduction. ($59.95 USD)
  • NewBlue SoundBenders, 9 environmental, vocal and atmospheric effects. Plugins include: Buzzurgle, Insectoid, Phone, Radio, Resonator, Robot Fog, Under Water, Wah and Wind. ($59.95 USD)

EDIUS users can purchase NewBlueFX directly from the company's website. Fully functional trial versions are available for download, as well.

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NewTek Now Shipping Next Generation TriCaster Portable Live Production Systems

NewTek, Inc., manufacturer of industry-leading video and 3D animation products, today announced the next generation of its award-winning TriCaster™ line of portable live production and virtual set systems is shipping. Included in new TriCaster STUDIO™, TriCaster PRO™, and TriCaster™ models are MPEG-2 format recording during live shows, which allows the file to be used on any editing system, a wide range of performance improvements and support for a new line of accessories including: LiveControl™, TimeWarp™, LiveText™ and DataLink™.

Support for the new line of TriCaster accessories from NewTek gives TriCaster users the flexibility to work independently or expand their production team by offering a range of new capabilities in production:

  • LiveControl™ ($1,995US) provides a physical control surface that allows for transition between sources without the use of a keyboard or mouse.
  • TimeWarp™ ($995US) provides the ability to assign a dedicated operator for incorporating slow motion and replay in live production.
  • LiveText™ ($995US) provides the ability for a dedicated graphics operator to use a remote laptop or other computer system for pre-production of title pages, scrolls and crawls or for updates on the fly during live production.
  • DataLink™ ($995US) provides compatibility with external sources for real-time updates of title pages including information from scoreboards and databases.
TriCaster STUDIO and TriCaster PRO now have Adobe® Flash® streaming and archiving ability, providing the most popular means of online video delivery. NewTek’s proprietary LiveSet™ technology for network style virtual sets has been added to TriCaster PRO. Both TriCaster PRO and TriCaster now offer switching support for both 16:9 and 4:3 video for greater flexibility in live production, along with SpeedEDIT™-based nonlinear editing for expanded pre and post production capabilities. In addition, the entry level TriCaster now includes Windows Media® push streaming which dramatically simplifies the ability to stream, a full featured character generator for creation of custom titles and adjustable VGA output resolution for projectors that support higher resolution display.

"The next generation of TriCaster software expands the reach of the product by adding key features that allow it to work faster and in a broad range of new situations," said Dr. Andrew Cross, NewTek Executive VP of Software Development. "The ability to stream a live show using Adobe Flash video allows a TriCaster user to present their vision to a much wider audience, while the ability to record native MPEG-2 clips of the entire show makes it possible to move the files for further editing or processing to other platforms or media without the need for conversion."

TriCaster™ enables sports organizations, corporate communications departments, broadcasters, schools and others to provide a new level of extended programming and content to their fans, partners and other audiences. Now, a single operator or a team can produce a live show switching between as many as six cameras with two VCR’s, multi-channel effects, and NewTek’s proprietary LiveSet™ virtual sets and keying technology. With TriCaster™, everyone can produce network quality live video, which can be distributed simultaneously to video, projector and web stream.

Current TriCaster owners who desire to gain the benefits of the next generation TriCaster line will have full access to the wide range of expanded capabilities offered in the new products. An FAQ for TriCaster™, TriCaster PRO™ and TriCaster STUDIO™ users is available at here. For a complete overview of the next generation TriCaster STUDIO, TriCaster PRO and TriCaster visit www.newtek.com/tricaster. Pricing and Availability The TriCaster™ family of products in NTSC is available in North America starting at $4,995US. The TriCaster™ family of products is available in multi-standard internationally beginning at $6,995US. The upgrades for TriCaster, TriCaster PRO FX and TriCaster STUDIO will be priced at $495US with the TriCaster 2.0 upgrade for TriCaster PRO priced at $995US. For more information, please visit http://www.newtek.com or call NewTek Sales at 1-800-368-5441, international callers dial +1-210-370-8000. About NewTek With headquarters in San Antonio, Texas, NewTek is an Emmy® Award-winning and leading provider of full-featured live production, video editing, presentation, animation and special effects tools including TriCaster™, TriCaster Pro™, TriCaster STUDIO™, TriCaster BROADCAST™, VT[5]™, SpeedEDIT™, 3D Arsenal™, LightWave 3D® and LightWave Rendition™ for Adobe® Photoshop®. --End--

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Ridata Adds Ultra-Large 32GB Model To Its Ultra-Fast, 233X LIGHTNING Series Of Compact Flash Cards

Advanced Media, Inc., manufacturer and marketer of the popular Ridata brand of recordable DVD, flash media, electronic storage products, and digital accessories, has introduced a 32GB model to its 233x Lightning Series of CompactFlash(r) cards. Proving size does matter in memory cards, it boasts one of the largest capacities, fastest transfer rates available in a CF card. It joins existing 233x Series models featuring 2GB - 16GB storage capacities.

"Mobile digital products continue to get more and more sophisticated," commented Harvey Liu, president of Advanced Media, Inc. "To that end, they require more data storage and faster read times. Our new 32GB 233x Lightning Series CompactFlash card delivers both. In today's digital flash media world, size matters. And Ridata has it."

The new Ridata 32GB/233X CF card is perfect for users of higher megapixel digital cameras. Its large 32GB capacity allows the user to store more photos, while virtually eliminating nagging wait time for data to record. Consumers are strongly urged to check the hardware device specifications to ensure the device used will work with higher capacity CF cards using the FAT32 file system.

As with all Ridata CF products, this latest introduction conforms to the CompactFlash Association Standard, is PC card Standard and PC card ATA compatible as it is with true IDE mode. It is designed to work with most devices and operating systems. It is also very durable and can withstand an extreme temperature range from below freezing to very high heat.

Its 233x high-speed reading (approximately 35MB/s) and 80x high-speed writing (about 12MB/s) are achieved by dual-channel data throughput. (Note: Speeds may vary depending on device used.) An automatic power management feature assures low power consumption.

The card includes many superior technical features Ridata products are known for. It is host ATA disk I/O BIOS, DOS and Windows file system, utilities, and application software compatible. Its controller supports Ultra DMA Mode up to Mode 4. CIS is implemented with 256 bytes of attribute memory. It supports 8 or 16-bit host transfers with any host speed using IORDY. An Error Correction Code (ECC) is embedded. The card also provides forward and backward functionality. It carries a two-year warranty.

Ridata markets two distinct series of CompactFlash cards: Lightning and Supreme. They make perfect choices in solid-state mass-storage cards for hand-held devices such as digital cameras, MP3 players, PDAs, or applications that require high-environmental tolerance. Both cards offer flash technology ruggedness, reliability, performance, and convenience.

Cost and Availability
The Ridata 32GB 233x Lightning Series CompactFlash(r) card has an SRP of $199.00. As with other Ridata products, it is available through selected retailers, Ridata distributors, and at various online outlets. A complete listing of locations may be found on the Advanced Media/Ridata website. It is available now for shipping.

For more information, visit http://www.ritekusa.com.

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Disc Makers Offers Falconmedia Pro Recordable Media To Performance-Oriented Customers

Falcon Technologies International (FTI), the worldwide leading manufacturer of optical data storage discs for professional and archival applications, today announced that is has formed a partnership with Disc Makers to offer the full line of FalconMedia Pro optical recording media to Disc Makers’ customers. Disc Makers is offering FalconMedia Pro products directly to end-users through its catalogs and Website, and as an option for duplication services and on-disc printing. FTI recording media delivers unrivaled reliability and durability along with innovative features and advanced surface formulations for superior recording and printing performance.

"FTI and Disc Makers have built a strong business relationship on the foundation of our shared commitment to excellence," said Mr. Adel Michael, co-founder and CEO of Falcon Technologies International (FTI). "As a complete replication service bureau, and the nation’s largest independent supplier of automated disc printers and duplication systems, Disc Makers is ideally positioned to play an important role in facilitating FTI’s initiative to become the primary supplier of recording media for professional applications in the U.S. market."

"Falcon’s professional grade media solutions are known for unparalleled reliability and compatibility, "said Tony van Veen, President of Disc Makers. "We are excited to partner with Falcon and continue to offer our customers the best optical media available."

FalconMedia Pro discs give Disc Makers’ customers a quality advantage. In addition to a variety of printable surface formulations, available features include Ultra Hard Coat scratch resistance technology, and gold reflective layer formulations offering up to 300 years of archival lifespan.

Print, Protect, Archive
FTI’s printable discs are the perfect solutions for professional disc duplication and printing applications. Available for inkjet and thermal disc printers, FalconMedia Pro printable discs combine crisp, clear surface printing capabilities with exceptional recording and playback performance. The discs feature print-to-hub surfaces that enable printing all the way to each disc’s hub for maximum visual impact.

FTI’s Ultra Hard Coat (UHC) anti-scratch protection is the most reliable solution to protect mission-critical data against potential disc surface contaminants and mishandling. Applied to the media’s polycarbonate layer during the manufacturing process, UHC technology dramatically increases the disc’s scratch resistance and also helps fend off other contaminants such as smudges from fingerprints. Because most spills and other contaminants cannot readily bind to the UHC surface, the disc easily wipes clean. Performance is not impacted, and the data is protected.

With its innovative formulations, FTI has achieved an archival lifespan of more than 300 years for FalconMedia Pro Full Gold EP recordable CD media, and more than 100 years for FalconMedia Pro Gold EP recordable DVD media. A 24k gold reflective layer provides maximum resistance to degradation caused by environmental factors such as corrosion, a major cause of failure in standard media. Both solutions have been subjected to accelerated aging conditions, confirming the discs’ archival life-spans.

www.discmakers.com

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MilesTek Introduces New Solid-Core RGB Cable, Digital Video Cable, Connectors, Tools and Kits

MilesTek, a global distributor delivering a vast range of networking and A/V integration products, introduces a variety of new cables, connectors and accessories at INFOCOMM International 2008, the annual convention of the International Communications Industries Association, beginning in June.

Designed for Custom Installation and other A/V professionals, the new products include Solid-Center RGB Cables, Digital Video Cables, Compression Connectors for both types of cable, specialized tools and pre-packaged Connector Kits. All are described in a new detailed product guide, RGB and Serial Digital Solutions, packed with vital, full-color information, including specifications and prices.

MilesTek’s new solid-center Mini RGBHV Cables are available in 25- and 23-gauge sizes, and are complemented by 25 AWG and 23 AWG single-piece BNC and RCA Compression Connectors. The solid-center construction of the conductor provides the cable with better performance, lower attenuation, and longer signal distance than typical stranded-center conductor cables.

The solid-center 25-gauge cable has a small diameter and is ideal for short-run RGB installations. The solid-center 23-gauge cable is a little larger and offers higher bandwidth and longer distance capabilities. Both are also ideal for HD and digital applications, and are swept-tested to 3 Ghz. An added benefit of the solid-gauge cables is that they allow the use of MilesTek’s one-piece connectors, which simplify installations and save time on the job.

MilesTek also offers solid-core Serial Digital Coax Cables in RG59 and RG6 styles. Special shielding and construction allow the cables to be used in a wide variety of HDTV, broadband and baseband applications, including jobs involving DBS, RGB, component video and line-level audio formats. Most coax cables can only serve specific applications, like CCTV or CATV. MilesTek’s multi-purpose cables help reduce bulk cable inventories, and are complemented by MilesTek’s high-quality, single-piece Compression Connectors.

MilesTek’s new accessories include a lightweight Compression Tool for terminating any and all of the company’s BNC, RCA and F connectors; a Coax Stripper for perfectly stripping RG59, RG6, Mini RGB Coax, and all other appropriate cable types; and several unique Compression Connector Kits, which each include a 12-pocket Traytote tool bag, a Connector Case, a Compression Tool, a Coax Stripper, a round Cable Cutter, and a variety of connectors.

MilesTek’s new cables, connectors, tools and connector kits can be seen with the company’s other outstanding products at Booth C1952, Las Vegas Convention Center, during InfoComm. An essential reference for busy professionals, RGB and Serial Digital Solutions is available free of charge.

www.MilesTek.com

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