Deity TC-1 Timecode Generator Overview


Deity TC-1 Timecode Generator Review

The Deity TC-1 Timecode Generator system first caught my consideration at Cinegear 2022. I used to be intrigued by the thought of an inexpensive timecode system ($549.00 for a equipment of three or $169.00 every) that I may merely throw into my digital camera packages – affording me the luxurious of not having to fret as a lot about syncing pictures later in put up. Right here is my evaluate of the Deity TC-1 Timecode Generator:

Time for a disclosure proper off the bat – I’m not an audio mixer or editor by commerce, and dealing with timecode is often the province of the audio workforce at the side of the AC workforce on my units. But that doesn’t imply I don’t recognize dependable timecode syncing, and I’m at all times on the lookout for methods to optimize the put up workflow on my tasks. I additionally suppose that, given the associated fee, the viewers for the TC-1 isn’t the normal of us answerable for on-set timecode, and that this may be an ideal first timecode expertise for a lot of. Let’s dive in.

Deity Microphones, a associate model of lighting producer Aputure, introduced the TC-1 Timecode Generator field alongside a $999 sensible slate, which sadly has been delayed by provide points and wasn’t accessible for this evaluate. So, for our functions, we’ll keep on with the TC-1 Timecode field for this evaluate.

Picture Credit score: Graham Ehlers Sheldon/CineD

A couple of banner options of the TC-1 to start out:

  • OLED Show
  • 2.4 GHz Wi-fi and Bluetooth Management
  • Locking 3.5mm Timecode Port
  • 28-Hour Battery Life (USB-C Charging)
  • Pairs with the brand new Sidus Audio Cell App
  • Onboard Microphone
  • Generates all SMPTE Timecode Codecs
  • Promised drift charge of 1 body inside 72-hours

First Impressions

The set of three TC-1 gadgets ships in a classy yellow and black field and contains the next:

  • Chilly Shoe Mount x3
  • Locking 3.5mm TRS to TRS Coiled Cable ($20 Worth)
  • Locking 3.5mm TRS to BNC Cable ($20 Worth)
  • Locking 3.5mm TRS to Proper-Angle 5-Pin LEMO Cable ($45 Worth) – For ARRI Alexa Mini
  • USB Sort-A to Triple USB Sort-C Charging Cable

For this evaluate, I primarily used a Sony FS7 MK II with an extension unit, a Canon C300 MK III, a Canon C500MK II and the Canon C70 for varied tasks over a number of weeks of testing. All of those cameras have a BNC / SDI port for timecode and thus, I rapidly needed to purchase two further 3.5mm TRS to BNC cables as a result of the equipment solely included one.

Picture Credit score: Graham Ehlers Sheldon

This highlighted a niche within the 3-unit equipment for me proper out of the gate – I’d have assumed {that a} equipment like this could ship with three of every of those various kinds of cables. The person $169.99 TC-1 equipment solely ships with the locking 3.5mm coiled cable. My guess right here is that Deity wished to depart this choice a la carte for the proprietor, provided that timecode cables differ from model to model (RED Cinema, for instance, is infamous for switching cable platforms from digital camera physique to digital camera physique).

My impressions of the TC-1 out of the field are formed by my time spent with the $229.00 per unit Tentacle Sync E system (actually the primary competitor for Deity right here by way of value level and Bluetooth management). It’s value noting that the Tentacle Sync E solely ships with a 3.5mm to three.5mm cable. The largest distinction between the Tentacle Sync E and TC-1 is that the Tentacle lacks an OLED show and is 100% reliant on the app to get it working – extra on the variations in a second.

A Energy, Sync and Pair LED indicator all line the highest of the system and the three.5mm port on the aspect rounds out the outside together with a easy energy button and a shiny, simply readable OLED show – it’s all very minimalist in an approachable type of approach. This looks as if a timecode system that wouldn’t be too exhausting to stand up and operating proper out of the field.

Deity additionally features a triple charging cable with the trio that makes charging all three gadgets that a lot easier. Heaps to love right here – time to energy on all three models.


Here’s a video exhibiting the setup that’s created by Deity Microphones:

There’s a component to the operation of the TC-1 that actually is ideal for a timecode novice like myself, and the Sidus Audio app is ranging from a extra polished place than even the Sidus Hyperlink lighting app was again at model one.

Sidus Audio App in motion discovering and syncing the gadgets.

The OLED Show on the TC-1 unit tells you just a few bits of helpful data at a fast look:

  • Timecode Information
  • A letter designation (I modified this to correspond to the digital camera metadata of the digital camera the given TC-1 was mounted on)
  • A “BT” indicating the unit is being managed by Bluetooth
  • Frames Per Second (23.98F, 24.00F, 25.00F, 29.97F, 29.97DF, 30.00F and many others)
  • Battery Life (displayed as hours and with a small bar)
  • A lock and unlocked display indicator within the backside left. This retains you from bumping a key setting unintentionally.

Wish to check out the brand new Sidus Audio app? You’ll find it accessible for obtain HERE.

Onboard microphone. Picture Credit score: Graham Ehlers Sheldon/CineD

For starters, except you need time of day timecode, you don’t even have to open the Sidus Audio app to get all three TC-1’s paired and sync your cameras. I personally don’t love having to hope I’ve sufficient battery life on my cell system on the finish of a 12-hour shoot day away from energy to make modifications in a given app, and the truth that you may have a ton of management via the OLED show itself is a giant plus for me.

I used the TC-1 primarily to sync a number of cameras and didn’t personally use a mixer on any of my shoots, however you might completely set a mixer paired with a TC-1 as your “essential node” sending timecode to numerous digital camera packages. In case your digital camera bundle doesn’t have a devoted BNC timecode port, you might additionally ship audio timecode utilizing the included 3.5mm cable (it takes up considered one of your audio channels with timecode audio that sounds a bit like you might be getting into the Matrix).

As soon as the TC-1 Field is powered on and paired, it rapidly enters a display sleep mode the place the intense show shuts off to keep away from getting caught in a shot in a pesky reflection.

The Sidus Audio app exhibits all the TC-1 Bins in play, and I assume it can sooner or later present the Sidus Good Slate as properly when these start to ship.

You may as well create totally different system teams for bigger exhibits, the place maybe totally different clusters of TC-1 containers are divided into totally different digital camera teams.

Deity Microphones claims a minimal one body drift after 72 hours and I personally didn’t encounter any drift throughout any of my shoots with the Sony FS7 MK II, C500 MK II, C300 MK III or the Canon C70 – though we by no means left a number of cameras operating for 3 days. The truth that I didn’t expertise any drift is a giant deal and the first promoting level of those gadgets.


Picture Credit score: Graham Ehlers Sheldon/CineD

For years, I’ve thought of timecode dealing with and operation to be purely an audio workforce job and the truth that I can sync timecode on a wide range of cameras in a matter of seconds utilizing my iPhone can’t be dismissed. The TC-1 simply works – it isn’t rain-proof or bullet-proof, however neither is your favourite digital camera or mixing system.

I’ve used Deity Microphones prior to now and there may be a lot to love there, nevertheless it may be time for the corporate to alter their identify to Deity Timecode, as a result of the TC-1 ecosystem and Sidus Audio App are implausible and exist at a value level that is sensible. I shall be to see how the upcoming, pricier Good Slate modifications the dynamic, however it is a promising system in a market phase that actually wanted some wholesome competitors, after years and years of the identical gadgets getting used on set with restricted innovation.

What do you suppose? Will you be including just a few TC-1 containers to your equipment? Do you want timecode in your workflow? Tell us within the feedback under!