Author: Ángel Escribano
We have had the opportunity to try the KULA system, courtesy of Snell Advanced Media (SAM). It is an all-new production switcher that receives the legacy of the successful KAHUNA range, yet priced on the lower side of the spectrum, offering high power within a really compact design equipment. Technicians responsible for studio and mobile switchers, as well as equipment operators and producers, have come together to participate in this test with the intention of obtaining a global vision of the equipment features.
The KULA production switcher comes in four different versions:
- 2 M/Es in HD/SD, which can be turned into a 1M/E in UHD
- 3 M/E an option that has recently been incorporated into the KULA portfolio
This new production switcher comes across as a versatile piece of equipment, perfect for the 4K/UHD transition that content creators need to overcome, yet with the possibility of still being able to make the most of HD or SD equipment or contents. And all this comes at a reasonable price. The KULA system is focused on both studio and exterior productions, suitable for use in mobile units or as a portable system in its most compact panel version. The system, as far as the control panel is concerned, offers five possible settings between one and two M/Es of 16 or 24 crosspoint keys. One of these panels is a 19”, so we can integrate the entire system into a flight-case. Also, KULA is compatible with the KAHUNA MAVERIK range of modular panels, enabling us to configure all the necessary settings required for our production. The system is completed with a touchscreen, from where we can operate the entire system. If we use it to produce 4K/UHD content, then KULA will offer 6 keys, 10 inputs and 3 outputs, dedicating 4 BNC connectors for each 3Gpbs signal on quadlink that make up each 4K/UHD signal, enabling productions in this technology with an adjusted investment.
In the test, we were able to work with the 2M/E version of the system comprised of: Main Frame, which is the main electronic unit, the 19” 1M/E panel and touchscreen, connected to the panel with HDMI and USB cables. The touchscreen sends out the information it receives. The assembly and engineering configuration in SD/HD were fast and truly intuitive. The Main Frame is connected directly to the control panel through an Ethernet network cable. The panel permits automated searches of the chassis -provided they have the same software version- because the panel searches for hardware devices connected physically to the same network, allowing their detection. Of course, we can always configure the IP addresses of the equipment manually if we want to.
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