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Updated: January 12th, 2011 09:49 AM CDT

Fox Sports Enhances 2009 World Series Coverage with Vision Research Digital High-Speed Camera

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Throughout its  six-game, 2009 World Series broadcast, Fox Sports provided its viewers with an  extraordinary look from behind home plate and down the first base line thanks  to the Vision Research (Wayne, N.J.) Phantom  v640 digital high-speed camera. At  Yankee Stadium in New York, the Phantom v640 was positioned low at first base,  capturing the powerful swings of right-handed batters as well as ensuing  sprints to first base in ultra-slow motion. The camera's vantage point from  behind home plate at Citizens Bank Park in Philadelphia also supplied a number  of ultra-slow motion replays during games three, four and five of the World  Series.

One of approximately  20 cameras used by Fox Sports during its broadcast, the Phantom v640 was  provided by Inertia Unlimited, which incorporated the camera into its X-Mo  slow-motion replay system. A leader in the professional broadcast industry,  Inertia Unlimited's X-Mo system has appeared at some of the most prestigious sporting events in the world, helping capture ultra-slow motion footage of  athletes performing at the highest level. For the World Series, Inertia Unlimited used the Phantom v640 at speeds of up to 540 frames per second and  recorded every play in 1,280 x 720 high-definition. In addition to the World  Series, Fox Sports used the Phantom v640 for ultra-slow motion replay at the  American League Championship Series. It also was used by Turner Sports during  the National League Championship Series.

Recording in  ultra-slow motion under normal stadium lighting conditions can typically pose a  challenge for camera operators, as higher frame rates require a wider aperture  and increased gain for proper exposure. Unfortunately, both options lead to  reduced image quality and noticeable differences between the various video  feeds used for the broadcast. To avoid resorting to these measures, Inertia Unlimited's engineers leveraged the impressive low-light performance of the  Phantom v640's CMOS sensor and applied a custom color matrix, fine-tuned to match the high-definition footage from other cameras throughout the stadium. This custom calibration allowed the X-Mo system to shoot at negative gain and  with a nominal aperture to provide Fox Sports with the cleanest, lowest-noise image possible for seamless integration with all of its camera feeds. This allowed X-Mo to be used for both live on-air shots as well as for ultra-slow motion replays in both the behind home plate and low-first position.

The Phantom v640 is  a four mega-pixel camera offering a maximum resolution of 2,560 x 1,600. It can record at speeds greater than 1,400 fps at its full, four mega-pixel resolution, and offers a maximum recording speed of 300,000 fps at a reduced  resolution. The Phantom v640's also can be used as a standard camera with the  ability to record at more traditional frame rates. In the full-HD resolution used during the 2009 World Series, the Phantom v640 offers frame rates which range from 10 fps to more than 2,700 fps. Such flexibility made the camera a  stand-out addition to Fox Sports' arsenal of broadcast tools, helping to further enhance its 2009 World Series event coverage.

For more  information, visit http://www.visionresearch.com/go/v640


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