ARRI has launched its fifth-generation intelligent hand unit. The new weatherproof ARRI Hi-5 is designed to provide reliable wireless camera and lens control, extensive radio link range and swappable radio modules for different territories and shooting challenges.

Replacing ARRI’s previous hand unit, the WCU-4, the new Hi-5 is part of the fifth-generation ecosystem of ARRI’s Electronic Control System (ECS). Together with a new radio system, new intelligent batteries, smart focus rings, and an iOS app, the Hi-5 aims to modernise on-set connectivity.

The unit is the first of its kind to feature swappable radio modules. With an often congested 2.4 GHz ISM band and different frequency regulations in different countries, the ability to exchange radio modules should allow crews to select the right module for each shooting location.

ARRI will release three radio modules in the 900 and 2400 MHz ranges, using direct sequence and frequency-hopping spread spectrum technology to cut through interference. Together, they cover a range of shooting situations with improved, robust and long-range radio link.

The unit has ruggedized housing for operating in harsh environmental conditions. It is sealed, dustproof, and weatherproof,

Smart pre-marked focus rings now communicate directly with the Hi-5 hand unit, recognized and mapped to the lens focus scale. Batteries for the Hi-5 are ARRI products, based on the NP-L interface; they can be hot-swapped without powering the unit down. A new Tail Slate Mode prevents the user from stopping recording before capturing a tail slate on shots that need it.

Jon Creamer

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