Broadcast Blog

A Closer Look at the AJS-2 Advanced Jib System

When it comes to producing broadcast-quality productions for events, houses of worship and corporate AV, there are several key bits of equipment that help create a look that viewers of traditionally produced television programming would expect to see. One of the most important of them is the jib.

100% Repeatable Motion With Robotic Precision

In a previous blog post, we talked about the differences between a robotic camera arm, and a traditional jib. Robotic camera arms are a great spacesaving innovation that offers powerful automation and integration capabilities. Traditional jibs are portable and create shots with a particular aesthetic due to the ability to move the camera in a curved path that creates arching and sweeping shots. The problem for the modern production team is that jibs are comparatively labour intensive. This is why we developed the new AJS-2 advanced jib system; to provide the full jib functionality that the industry has relied on for decades alongside the sort of advanced automation that current production environments demand.

At its simplest, a jib is a boom device with a camera on one end and a counterweight on the other shorter end to ensure that it is balanced. An operator can then use it to capture a variety of camera moves in an arc, such as overheads or long, sweeping shots that move over a crowd, even complete 360-degree shots of an entire audience, or venue, at the same time using simple controls to control the camera or camera head mounted on the end of the arm.

The smooth, dynamic camera movement that can be captured with a jib elevates productions significantly. However, jibs require operators and trained ones at that as there is a definite skill in piloting a remote camera head through 3D space while adjusting its pan, focus, tilt and zoom to maintain the shot that the director is after. Adding automation capabilities to a jib means it’s possible to capture consistently repeatable shots and allows high-end, broadcast-quality, on-air moves to be developed, stored and then push-button recalled by operators with minimal training. Moves can also be scaled allowing the duration of a move to be dynamically adjusted.

This the why we developed the AJS-2. It’s built on a platform designed for reliable use in live event productions. It offers quiet and smooth camera motions, supporting up to a 15kg PTZ camera. The jib is often paired with our ARC-360 PTZ camera and X-Head Studio (which is designed for underslung operation and thus a perfect fit for the unit). It can additionally be used with any third-party PTZ camera as long as they don’t exceed the maximum payload.

Offering advanced features, the AJS-2 comes in a range of lengths from 4.6ft (1.4 metres) to an impressive 11ft (3.4 metres). Advanced motorization ensures that every movement is calculated and exact, eliminating the potential for human error. The jib can be operated without physical excursion, which enhances safety during shoots and minimises operator fatigue over long production days.  

Providing ultimate flexibility, the AJS-2 is the only jib platform on the market to provide a full range of operation, easily configured for manual, hybrid, or fully automated operation. Experienced jib operators can work it as a traditional unit, physically moving the arm and controlling the camera head with the remote controls. Hybrid control, meanwhile, allows users to define and automate the motion paths while the head of the PTZ is manually controlled by an operator remotely or using presets. In fully automated mode it is perhaps even simpler to run, enabling smooth and completely repeatable camera moves that also automatically track the subjects on stage.

Lastly, all our products and solutions are created to support both remote & virtual production. Our AJS-2 system can be controlled via IP, meaning teams are free to work anywhere in the world. This in turn leads to a lower requirement for transportation of people and equipment to filming locations, reducing carbon footprint.

We can see the huge potential for this solution which is already gaining pace since it was introduced at NAB 2023. If you would like to know more, then contact the sales team today to talk through your requirements,

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