Lightweight, reliable and durable LCD monitors.
At Southeast High School in Bradenton, Florida, we have an extensive extracurricular program that complements our classroom studies. Almost 60 students are involved in our TV club that we call SETV. Our most advanced activity is our sports production team. We stream live on the internet 15 to 20 Seminole sporting events a year.
During our five years broadcasting sports, we have been able to assemble a fairly well equipped portable system. The center of the system is a TriCaster Studio video switcher which works very well and essentially satisfies most of our production needs. However, one of its drawbacks is that when it is in six camera mode, the monitor interface does not show the individual camera preview monitors. In short, without some external set up, the director is not able to see what the cameras are shooting. Our initial solution to this dilemma was some old black and white 4” Panasonic monitors in three packs. Although it seemed to initially solve our problem, it was awkward, heavy, and the quality of the monitors was extremely poor.
I began to search for an LCD monitor that I could purchase to build into some portable configuration. I found many products on the market that were in the ball park price range of a high school program. The problem with these monitors was that they did not have a video loop so that the cameras could first be sent to them and then go to the switcher. Any product that included this necessity easily headed way out of our budgetary constraints.
Then I was told about LCD4Video. I was put on to them by John Churchman of SVN while at the SkillsUSA national conference. John showed me the website and not only did the product look exactly like what I needed, but the price was too good to be true. I purchased seven 7” LCD monitors, and they have been incorporated into our system and have solved all our problems.
LCD4Video sells these light weight and durable monitors as a single unit, or in rack mounts of two or four. I bought a four mount and a two mount and built them into a small box. The single unit is mounted onto one of the 6 Canon GL’s that we use for our broadcasts. (We will be buying more. This camera is set on top of the press box for our cover shot, and the kids all fight over who gets to operate that camera)
I have been pleasantly surprised with these units. We have gone from a bulky and heavy monitor set up to a lightweight and versatile unit. The quality of the monitors is what you would expect of a LCD monitor and the adjustments for video are extremely easy to use. I am so satisfied with LCD4Video that I am contemplating replacing my old 10” Panasonic monitors in my studio with their 10” LCD.
And there is even icing for all this delicious cake. One of the monitors had a problem out of the box. There was a slight glitch in the video loop. I called LCD4 Video and talked to a very courteous and knowledgeable representative. I explained what the problem was, and he immediately told me to send it back with an RMA. They would test it, and if they found a technical issue, they would either fix it or replace it. Much to my delight, less than two weeks after I sent it to them, I received a brand new one in a box.
The one thing that I have not mentioned is the pricing. I don’t think that would be fair for me to do here since I got a package price for the seven. Go to the website…www.LCD4Video.com and see for yourself. If you have done any surfing for pricing on 7” or 10” LCD monitors with a video loop, you will be thrilled with their pricing.
Mike Sanders is the Television teacher at Southeast High school in Bradenton, Florida. Even though Sanders has never worked in the TV industry, he has been a TV teacher at Southeast High School for 9 years. He is on the national board for SkillsUSA and has taken teams for TV Vido and Broadcast News to the National level. The Southeast High School team has won two championships.