New England at NAB 2017

By Steve McGrath

For the broadcast and television industries, the most important trade show of the year is NAB. Annually held in Las Vegas, Nevada, the NAB show is THE platform for vendors and manufacturer to show their latest offerings. There is an underbelly of competition on the show floor as each manufacturer tries to upstage their competition. People will talk about the fallout of the NAB show for months to come.

With New England being one of the technological hubs of the United States, it is no surprise that region will have a plethora of talent represented at NAB. This month in Tech Edge, we will look at some of the bigger manufacturers from New England and how they will impact NAB 2017.

Facilis Technology

Facilis is based in our Hudson, Massachusetts and is one of the leaders in the storage space for the television and broadcast industries. When Facilis started as a company, their only wheelhouse was shared storage so that many editors could collaborate on the same media and projects. Now they have opened up their offerings to include answers to video archiving and asset tracking. This offers their customer base to get a nearly end to end post production workflow without too many holes in it.

Facilis’ three pillars of offerings are led by TerraBlock on the shared media storage, Fast Tracker on the asset tracking front, and for an archiving answer, they offer all tiers including nearline storage (which is a quasi-archived format) and LTO storage by partnering with Archiware, and Facilis even offers a cloud based archive solution.

With all these offerings, it’s hard to imagine what surprises Facilis has in store at NAB, but I’m sure it will be great. You can see how at booth SL7920.


izotopeComing out of one of the most innovative places in the United States is one of the most innovative companies I have seen in recent memory. From Cambridge, Massachusetts, Izotope has created plugin-ins and tools that really ride the fine line of innovative and job threatening. Their plugins work so well, that audio engineers have to feel threatened by it, but are so easy to use that anyone can get going on them and improve their audio mixes.

Izotope’s latest offering is called Neutron. Neutron is so amazing it’s borderline scary. Neutron is an audio mixing software plugin that suggests changes for your mixes and automates them for you. It offers an industry first “masking meter.” What the masking meter does is identify frequency collisions (usually between low end frequency instruments like bass and drums) and eliminate them. Audio engineers could only do this before with a process called “sidechaining” where you would use
compressors to get this same effect. Now Izotope has automated it where you can see the frequency collisions in a graphical interface. Being able to reproduce audio frequency spectrum in a graphical interface is reallywhat makes Izotope’s products so innovative. I have seen many demos of Izotope’s products that have left rooms nearly speechless.

Neutron offers a ten day free trial, so by all means try it. But keep in mind that where this is an audio plugin, there is no current support for non-linear editing software. So to try Neutron, you need to be using audio editing software such as ProTools, Logic, Cubase, Reaper and a few others. It’s hard to envision what Izotope will come up with next, but you can see them live at NAB at booth SL9308.

Boris FX

boris fx lunarThis will be the most exciting year for Boris at this year’s NAB. It is the first year that Boris will be at NAB after the colossal merger with Genarts. Both product lines will be a super-sized booth this year as a mecca of top-shelf visual effects. It could be the most visually stunning booth in
recent years.

Genarts has had a terrific year with the rollout of Sapphire 10. The best of Sapphire 10 includes a new effect called “Luna” that allows you to add photo realistic lunar cycles into your video. Whatever kind of moon you want, Genarts can create it. They also have added some new effects that include some stunning mosaics, over 150 new presets (for a total of over 3000) and they are HDR ready.

On the Boris side, Continuum has some new effects of their own. Their new effects seem to center around fixing images with effects such as BCC Remover, Dropout Fixer, and Reframe. Conversely, if you want to make your images messy, they can provide that too with the BCC Video Glitch. They even offer a new browser to see the effects.

They are now offering “Units” of both the Continuum and Sapphire plugins allowing users to take on bite-sized groups of plugins. They are broken up into categories like Stylize, Blur and Sharpen, Render, Time, Transitions and many more. With so many visual effects between the companies, you will be dazzled in their booth. You can visit Boris FX at booth SL6824.

This NAB is gearing up to be exciting as always. Next month in Tech Edge, we will go over some of the NAB fallout and discuss what new and innovative products have been announced.

Steve McGrath is a Broadcast Sales Engineer for HB Communications. He has worked with NBC, ABC, CBS, NESN, NECN, Fox, ESPN, Pentagon, Powderhouse and many others. You can reach him at Steve.McGrath@ Learn more, visit



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