Hello Cleveland! Actioncam Hovers Over NBA Playoffs for Turner Sports

By Ken Kerschbaumer

The Actioncam system is once again flying high over a major hoops event as Turner Sports is using the system during the NBA Eastern Conference Finals games in Cleveland. “We can’t fly over the court so it’s rigged for shots from the side of the court and it’s been very effective and getting a lot of air time,” says PJ Bennett, Actioncam president and CEO.

The Actioncam system made its debut at the NCAA Men’s basketball Final Four. It takes two technicians to run the Actioncam system. A pilot moves the camera in 3D space — up and down, left and right, front and back — using a set of joysticks. The camera operator handles the pan, tilt, zoom, and focus of the shot. Actioncam uses a Panasonic HC1500 broadcast-quality multiformat camera, along with a Fujinon 4.3 computer-controlled lens.

Actioncam, unlike other aerial camera systems, uses five cables to allow it to move in any direction and height. A fifth cable is used for safety purposes. “Our system is a lot simpler and more forgiving to use than competing systems,” says Bennett. “We use high strength cables and a lightweight camera head and that allows it to move up to 50 mph.”

Actioncam is developing the industry’s first 3D capable aerial video system and testing a system for baseball broadcasts. “It seems that 3D has gained traction and we’re going to be there to support that industry,” says Bennett. “Networks like what we’ve been able to do and we want to open up new markets.”