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Review: NewTek TriCaster 410

NewTek's latest addition to the TriCaster line is a slim form factor, power-packed SDI-only solution.

Virtual Sets

TriCaster 410 adds a number of virtual set enhancements (Figure 2, below)--a trickle-down from the highest-end 855/860 model--with the additional graphics and general-purpose processing (GPU and CPU, respectively) providing extra oomph (a highly technical term) to allow a number of smooth virtual camera moves.

Figure 2. The TriCaster UI, including new virtual set enhancements. Click the image to see it at full size.

The result in our testing was a much more polished experience than we’d see in the TriCaster 40 review, especially when attempting what we’d call complex virtual camera moves, in which we had several live images virtually scaled and added to live titling.

In other words, the extra money is worth it if you’re looking to do professional virtual sets and camera moves. In fact, the virtual set engine is the same one used in the highest-end TriCaster 860.

"We're bringing many functionalities from our $39,995 unit down to our $9,995 unit," said Holland, "so that someone just getting started has the same level of functionality at a more limited number of inputs."


Speaking of pricing, the difference between a TriCaster 410 and TriCaster 40 is approximately $4,000. Holland had previously described the reasoning for the difference between the two units, both considered entry-level TriCaster models, as a difference between prosumer and pure professional users.

"From a production standpoint, we see the 410 for those who have a professional background,” said Holland. “As such, we see a distinct line between the 40, as the entry-level TriCaster, and the 410 as the entry-level professional TriCaster.”

Adding on the optional TC40CS control surface price bumps the $5,995 price of the TriCaster 40 to approximately $7990, while adding the TC460CS control surface to the 410 pushes the $9,995 entry price up to approximately $16,990. The 410 itself works with either the 40 control surface ($1,995) or the 460 control surface ($6,995) but NewTek recommends the TC460CS due to its one-to-one mapping of control surface keys between the 460 and 410.

NewTek has told us before that in many cases an older TriCaster can be traded in for credit against a newer TriCaster. NewTek will apply a trade-in value for the cost of some earlier units in the TriCaster line against the TriCaster 410, with some notable exceptions: you cannot upgrade to a TC410 from an earlier, higher-end system such as a TriCaster 450/850, 450/850 Extreme, 455/855, or 460/860/8000.

"We recognized that, prior to the 410 that there was an opportunity between the 40 and the next closest TriCaster unit," said Holland, "so we wanted to meet the opportunity as the next closest unit--the TriCaster 460--was priced at $14,995. We were able to effectively cut the price difference in half by introducing the 410."

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