At CineGear 2023, cmotion was showing its new Mainstation MST1. This was originally announced at NAB 2023, but we didn’t get a chance to cover it.
The Mainstation MST1 is a unique product that addresses all the power challenges on set for crane and head operators as well as. a lot of the camera department.
The Mainstation MST1 features five hot-swappable inputs. and six regulated, always-on outputs. The Input voltage is 10 – 34V, and it can handle up to 20A per channel. The Main station MST1 can supply up to 1000W.
ARRI and Panavision polarity is no longer an issue with the Mainstation MST1. You can hot swap batteries without your remote head drifting thanks to the regulated output.
The two external inputs are prioritized over the on-board batteries. As long as at least one external input is in the valid range, the on-board batteries will be on stand-by waiting to take over.
There is built-in over and under-voltage protection, as well as overcurrent monitoring, to ensure safe and reliable operation.
Both external inputs are independently rectified so they can provide the correct polarity to the downstream equipment.
You can attach and use any battery mount usually used on set via the universal battery plates that just screw on.
Both 14V and 28V batteries can be used at the same time. The input currents are digitally controlled for optimal discharge rates and timings.
Independent of the input voltages or hot-swapping scenarios, the front outputs are always regulated. The XLR4 is regulated 14.8V up to 15A and the XLR3 is user adjustable from 26-33V (up to 21A). The user-adjustable voltage allows users to compensate for voltage drops in long cables or adjust to specific equipment requirements.
What about if you are running a remote head that required 36V? No problem. The 48.8V output can be user set to 36V.
How would you use it?
The regulated outputs enable the use of 14V batteries for 28V equipment In the example above, the Mainstation MST1 can be used for compact setups, that do not allow an on board battery to be used. Not only can you hot-swap batteries, but you can also use the additional outputs for accessories like small monitors or video TX/RX. This set-up is lighter and smaller than if you used a block battery.
You could also power an entire DIT/VTR cart from one Mainstation. Two on-board batteries will provide power, and for AC that require a 28V inverter you can use the 28V XLR socket. The External Input can be used with a power supply when AC is available.
If yoiu are using Remote Heads you can avoid unwanted behaviour when input voltage fluctuates due to batteries state of charge, or when replacing the batteries. The prioritized external input can be used with an external power supply if AC is available. The control unit for the remote head and accessories can be powered from the same Mainstation.
Price & Availability
Deliveries are slated to begin Q3 2023.
The Pre-order package includes:
1 x Mainstation MST1
2 x XLR Boost Cables
(28V boost enable cable – XLR 4pin – XLR 3pin)
(48V boost enable cable – XLR 3pin – XLR8+2 pin)
3 x Battery Plates
One set of the same type – selectable on final purchase.
(V-Mount, B-Mount or Gold Mount – more options will follow.)
1 x cmotion travel case with custom inserts
Will fit a Mainstation, additional battery mounts, cables and four batteries.
The Pre-order package price is 5800€
All pre-orders will be supplied ex-works from Vienna, Austria.