Focus Enhancements Ships MX-4 Video Mixer
Focus Enhancements has shipped its new MX-4 video mixer, which processes video in a 10-bit 4:2:2 format (as used in its predecessor, the Videonics MXPro.) The MX-4 includes foreground and background graphics stores, an Ethernet port for connecting to a computer, 700 transitions and picture-in-picture capabilities. Comb filtering circuitry and input effects with preview are also included. The new mixer retails for $2,195.

Plextor Ships 16X Single-Layer, 4X DVD+R Dual-Layer SATA DVD Burner
Plextor has shipped the PX-716SA Serial ATA DVDR/RW burner, which burns DVD±R discs at 16x and dual-layer DVD+R discs at 4x. The drive also burns DVD+RW discs at 8x, DVD-RW discs at 4x, reads DVDs at 16x, reads and writes CDs at 48x and burns CD-RWs at 24x. The drive includes an 8MB buffer and Buffer Underrun Proof Technology to avoid burning coasters. The drive also includes Intelligent Tilt control, and can automatically optimize the write strategy used for burning unknown media.

The $159 drive ships with Roxio Easy Media Creator 7 Basic DVD Edition.

Sony Unveils Professional HDV Camcorder
Sony’s Broadcast and Production Systems Division has added an HDV camcorder to its lineup, the HVR-Z1U. The HVR-Z1U offers a wider range of frame rates (60i, 60i, 30, 25 and 24 frames per second) than its consumer cousin, the HDR-FX1. The camcorder utilizes a 3-CCD design with 1/3" CCDs and a 12x optical zoom lens. XLR microphone inputs with phantom power capability are also included, along with SMPTE timecode, manual iris and Hyper Gain controls.

The camcorder is slated to be released this month, and will retail for about $4,900.

Ulead Announces MSP HD plugin for Sony HDV Camcorder
Ulead Systems has announced version 2.0 of its MediaStudio Pro HDV plugin, which now supports Sony’s HDR-FX1 HDV camcorder. The plugin will also support Sony’s new HVR-Z1U professional HDV camcorder, which is due to ship early this year. The $299 plugin allows HDV content to be captured by MediaStudio Pro to be edited in its native form, within the MediaStudio Pro interface. Users of version 1.0 of the plugin (which only supported JVC’s HDV camcorders) can upgrade to version 2.0 for free.

Primera Announces BravoPro Disc Publisher
Primera has announced a new version of its Bravo Disc Publisher. The BravoPro can produce up to 100 CDs or DVDs per job, using the same robotic mechanism. The BravoPro is available with 52x CD burners or Pioneer DVR-108 dual-layer DVD±R/RW drives. The burned discs are then printed in color at up to 4800DPI with the integrated Lexmark-based inkjet printer. Primera quotes performance at up to 50 discs per hour.

The duplicator ships with Sonic PrimoDVD 2.1 software for Windows and CharisMac Discribe 5.2 for the Mac, and connects to any computer that has a USB 2.0 interface. It retails for $3,495 with CD burners and $3,995 with DVD burners. A version with no drives, dubbed the BravoPro AutoPrinter, retails for $2,495.

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