Wednesday, August 23rd, 2017 [Ottawa, Ontario, Canada] – Ross Video®, the leader in smart production, is pleased to announce that Phil Bennett, co-founder of Abekas, which was acquired by Ross Video last year, will be awarded the prestigious SMPTE David Sarnoff Medal. Each year, the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers (SMPTE) recognizes one individual with the David Sarnoff Medal for the outstanding contributions they have made to the development of new techniques or equipment that have improved the engineering phases of television technology, including large-venue presentations.
This year, SMPTE will present the award to Phil Bennett in recognition of his significant contributions to the broadcast industry with his work in video effects, still stores, and digital standards conversion during the dawning of the digital video era. Over the years, Bennett has developed many groundbreaking products for broadcasters, including the very successful Ampex Digital Optics (ADO) digital video effects system and one of the very early digital disk recorders.
“This award is a huge honor for Phil, and it truly recognizes his impact on the industry,” stated Junaid Sheikh, CEO of Abekas. “I am very proud of him, and proud to have worked with him throughout all of these years. Congratulations Phil, you deserve this recognition.”
Bennett started his career with Quantel, developing the first generation of digital products that began the industry transition from analog to digital including frame synchronizers and digital standards converters. Later at Ampex, Bennett led the development of the 1983 Emmy® award-winning ADO Digital effects system, which changed television content forever with digital special effects and video image rotation and perspective control. Bennett co-founded Abekas in 1982, where he led the development of still stores, digital effects systems, and production switchers. His A62 disk recorder introduced lossless real time digital layering and was recognized with an Emmy Award in 1986. Also at Abekas, Bennett and team developed the A84, a practical digital production switcher without the timing and quality problems of analog predecessors, which won an Emmy in 1990. Under his guidance, the Abekas team also introduced the Mira server line for production playout and instant replay, finalizing the transition from analog tape based systems to the all-digital platforms used today.
Phil Bennett’s list of accomplishments goes on, and he will be celebrated on Thursday, October 26th in Hollywood, California when he formally accepts the David Sarnoff Medal at the SMPTE Annual Awards Gala, which is part of the SMPTE 2017 Annual Technical Conference & Exhibition (SMPTE 2017). Further details about SMPTE 2017 are available at www.smpte2017.org.
For more than a century, the people of SMPTE (pronounced “simp-tee”) have sorted out the details of many significant advances in media and entertainment technology, from the introduction of “talkies” and color television to HD and UHD (4K, 8K) TV. Since its founding in 1916, SMPTE has received an Oscar® and multiple Emmy® Awards for its work in advancing moving-imagery engineering across the industry. SMPTE has developed thousands of standards, recommended practices, and engineering guidelines, more than 800 of which are currently in force today. SMPTE Time Code™ and the ubiquitous SMPTE Color Bars™ are just two examples of SMPTE’s notable work. As it enters its second century, SMPTE is shaping the next generation of standards and providing education for the industry to ensure interoperability as the industry evolves further into IT- and IP-based workflows.
SMPTE’s global membership today includes more than 7,000 members: motion-imaging executives, creatives, technologists, researchers, and students who volunteer their time and expertise to SMPTE’s standards development and educational initiatives. A partnership with the Hollywood Professional Association (HPA) connects SMPTE and its membership with the businesses and individuals who support the creation and finishing of media content. Information on joining SMPTE is available at www.smpte.org/join.
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