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You can set up the Courtyard CY440 to provide reference and timecode to both the SDI camera and the Vicon system. Most SDI cameras require two cables to provide both timecode and sync.  In the case of SDI and Composite, Vicon Lock units can accept one cable that carries both reference sync and timecode. However, when tri-level sync is used, LTC timecode is also required.

Consequently, either three or four ports on the timecode generator are used: two to the camera, and either one or two to the Lock unit. If multiple cameras are used, then you may need to add distribution amplifiers for LTC, and for either tri-sync or SDI.

The software used to set up the Courtyard timecode generator is ROSS DashBoard. It can be freely downloaded and installed on Windows.

To set up the timecode generator:

  1. If the SDI feature is required to sync the camera or the Lock unit, check that it is enabled.
  2. On the front panel, select System Setup > Option Enable.
    If SDI is present, HD and 3G are listed, together with an option code for each.
    The SDI feature is required for cameras that require SDI sync, such as the Blackmagic URSA Mini 4K, and if you want to use the SDI input on a Vicon Lock Studio.
  3. Find the IP address of the device using the front panel, or set an IP address.
    The IP address is shown on the front panel of the device when the menu is not in use.
    If you need to change any network settings, go to System Setup > Network
  4. Use the Ross Dashboard software to add a connection to the device.





    If the connection succeeds, the new display is added to the tree view in green, with sub-menus below it.
    If it is not found, it is added to tree in gray, with no sub-menus under it.

  5. On the System Time menu, set the frame rate for the LTC signal to the video camera, and a Lock is required.  
    You must set the frame rate to the base rate associated with the desired video standard on the camera. For example, for 60 Hz video standards, the timecode frame rate is 30 Hz.



    The CY440 has only one LTC generator, to provide timecode to the SDI camera and the Vicon system. Two outputs on the CY440 can be used for LTC. We recommend that you set them both to LTC1
    This gives two timecode outputs: one for the camera and one for the Vicon Lock unit (if required, as the Lock can also get timecode from Composite, or SDI in the case of a Lock Studio.)



    The outputs on the CY440 that can be configured for LTC are labeled LTC and Wordclock.
    Connect one of the LTC outputs to the video camera and one to the Lock unit, if the Lock is using tri-sync and LTC. (If a Lock Studio is getting an SDI signal, or any type of Lock is getting a composite signal for sync, then the embedded timecode in the signal can be used and a separate LTC connection is not required.)

  6. Set up the reference signal for the camera. This must be the same as the video standard that is selected on the camera.
    • For cameras that take SDI reference, such as the Blackmagic URSA Mini 4K, use Slot 1: SDI 1 Video.



      Then connect the output labeled SDI1 to the camera's SDI IN port. 

    • For cameras that take tri-sync reference, such as the ARRI Alexa Mini LF, use Slot 8: Color Black 2.



      Connect the output labeled Tri Black 2 to the cameras SYNC IN port. 

  7. Set up the timecode and sync for the Vicon Lock unit.
    • Vicon Lock or Lock+
      Use Slot 9: Color Black 3 and set the video format as required.



      Connect the output labeled Tri Black 3 to the Lock's REF LOOP port. 
    • Vicon Studio
      Set the SDI output as shown in step 6. The CY440 can generate only one type of SDI signal at a time, although it has two physical BNC connectors, labeled SDI 1 and SDI 2.
      This means the standard chosen must be suitable for syncing both the Lock and the SDI. If there is no suitable SDI standard, the Lock must be synced from the CY440, using either tri-level or composite. If tri-level is used, LTC is required for timecode because tri-level sync does not include timecode.

      You can configure independently whether the two outputs are black or show a test pattern, but this is usually irrelevant for sync and timecode.
      M
      ake sure that embedded timecode is enabled. This is described as ATC in the software and must be set to LTC.



      Connect SDI 2 to the Lock's SDI port.

29.97 Hz non-drop frame
Some older versions of the Courtyard firmware do not support 29.97 Hz timecode in non-drop-frame mode. For more information, contact Courtyard.