AirKnight HD4S – 3G-SDI High Definition DVR for Flight Tours

Datatoys AirKnight HD4S airborne video recorder is a pivotal component of Datatoys airborne video systems. AirKnight HD4S is a full 1080p60 3G-SDI and HD-SDI airborne video recorder designed for the professional helicopter touring industry. Record video from up to FOUR HD-SDI 1080p30 or 1080p60 cameras. Automatically or manually switch between each camera by using the front panel interface buttons or our Director Box. You can also directly connect these controls to your cyclic or collective controls so the pilot never has to remove his/her hands from the helicopter controls. Overlay pilot/operator audio commentary on the video recording. Create your custom flight tour experience while recording directly to USB flash drive or SD card. Customers will purchase the video at the end of the tour to share their experience with their friends and family via social media. We have seen the AirKnight HD4S pay for itself within a month after install.

  • High Definition Digital Video Recording to USB drive or SD card at 1080p60/30.
  • 3G-SDI, HD-SDI, HDMI or CVBS camera inputs available.
  • Record video from one to four HD-SDI or 3G-SDI cameras
  • Automatically or manually switching between one to four cameras
  • Overlay operator audio commentary on to video.
  • Easy to install and operate. Currently installed and operated on helicopters around the world.
  • Capture the “Once in a life time” experience thrill seekers of all ages enjoy and give them something they can take home and show their friends.

A simple install and your flight tour aerial video system starts paying back for itself immediately. It’s just that easy.

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Record Audio and Video

Single, Dual, and Quad Channel Optionsairknight_rail_web

  • AirKnight-HD – Single Channel Recording
  • AirKnight-HD2 – Dual Channel Recording
  • AirKnight-HD4S – Single Channel Recording with Quad Switching
  • AirKnight-HD4Sa – full 1080p60 3G-SDI and HD-SDI airborne video recorder designed for the professional helicopter tour industry

Each version has the option for bottom mounting, side mounting, or Dzus rail mounting. GPS option is also available with all versions.

Record one or two channels as separate video files to SD or USB media. Add up to 4 cameras with the AirKnight HD4S which allows you to switch between four cameras with our Director Video Switcher. Use existing bullet or gimbal cameras with our HD-SDI, HDMI and CVBS PAL / NTSC or use our HD high definition HD-SDI and 3G-SDI bullet cameras.

Data Recording and Overlay

With the optional GPS, record and overlay geospatial data including: time, lat long, altitude, heading and speed. Included with the GPS option is your choice of a Garmin 18x 5Hz, or 1Hz GPS receiver or you can use most standard GPS units through the RS-232 input on the AirKnight.

GPS Data Recording

GPS data will be recorded a KML and GPX format. These files can be viewed directly in Google Earth, or the included FlightSync software which synchronizes your video and data. These files also work with most third party Geospatial software applications.

Overlay GPS Data

In addition to a separate data file, you can also overlay GPS data and other text on top of the video. Using the web user interface, individual data points can be turned on or off and positioned anywhere on the video. Text size options range from 8pt to 40pt (pixels) in height. Multiple font and color options are available.

  • Coordinates
    • Degrees, Minutes, Seconds
    • Degrees, Minutes
    • Degrees
  • Speed
    • Knots (KT)
    • Miles per Hour (MPH)
    • Kilometers per Hour (KPH)
  • Altitude (AMSL)
    • Feet (F)
    • Meters (M)
  • Heading (Degrees)

Overlay Custom Text (Character Generator)

A built in high definition character generator allows you to overlay custom text on the video. Users can enter the text in the web user interface or send real time text information via RS-232. Up to three independent lines of data can be sent at nearly any baud rate, text must simply be sent as ASCII$,text1,text2,text3(CR)(LF) . Font type, size, color and position can be customized in the web interface for each text line.

Record to USB or SD Mediaproduct_av_udvp_desc_media

Record straight to off-the-shelf USB or SD cards. No hassle downloading. No exotic memory cards.

Optimized for flight tours. “The old way of burning DVDs worked, but can be time consuming.” With the Datatoys Digital Copy Concept, just pop out the USB flash drive at the end of a flight and hand it to your customer. Drives can be preloaded with stock footage, coupons and still images, drives can also be printed with your logo. The instant gratification of digital copy for the customer improves conversions, since your customers no long have to wait for a lengthy DVD edit, encode, and burn process.

For helicopter tours with multiple groups, Datatoys offers a complete USB replicating system to duplicate the video on multiple USB’s in minutes.

Record Headset Audio

Video is only part of the experience. Include all headset audio throughout your flight with the included Aviation Headset Cable. Cables plug into your audio panel and any GA headset on the market. U174 helicopter headset cables are an available option.

High Quality, Small Files

Using the same AVC/H.264 High Profile compression as Blu-Ray. Our AirKnight recorders offer the highest quality with maximum efficiency meaning you get the highest video quality while having files sizes that are easy to store, edit, playback, and upload. Universal file containers allow for easy editing and playback on a PC or Mac.

The AirKnight-HD records in the “Sweet Spot” balancing video quality and small file sizes. HD recordings under 8mbps offer poor quality, pixelation and blocking in the image, on the other hand once compression data rates surpass 20mbps there is little or no visual improvement in video quality. By keeping the data rate between 8Mb/s and 16Mb/s, quality to file size ratio is maximized, meaning its the highest quality, yet easy to use.

MJPEG compression is a menu option with data rates up to 50Mb/s. MJPEG compression is ideal for production film applications where high speed editing is required.

Sync Time and Overlay

Synchronize system time to an NTP server and overlay time right on the video. Ideal for flight testing applications.


Record Stop/Start Switch

Trim down your post flight editing time by starting and stopping recordings with an external record switch. Mount the Start/Stop Switch on the dash. An LED indicator lights up to indicating there is power to the unit. Flip the switch to start recording and the LED indicator will flash, indicating recording.

A record LED is also built into the front of the unit. The AirKnight-HD2 can be wired to record each channel independently or simultaneously.

Network User Interface

Access more advanced settings via the network user interface.

  • CBR and VBR
  • .H264 AVC and MJPEG Compression
  • Baseline or High Profile Compression
  • Bit Rates
  • GOP Size
  • Video Down-scaling
  • Pre and Post Alarm
  • Custom File Size
  • Video Motion Detection
  • Live Streaming
  • Custom Text Overlay
  • Audio Gain Level
  • Overwrite When Full (Yes/No)


Connect HD-SDI, HDMI, or NTSC/PAL cameras directly into the AirKnight. All standard resolutions up to 1080p60 are supported. BNC HD-SDI connectors make connecting the AirKnight to your Gimbal camera system a snap.

*HDMI will not recognize protected content

Datatoys HD Bullet Cameras

The HD Mini Bullet is our very own waterproof 1080p bullet camera, offering superb quality, automatic adjustments and a rugged, compact design. Mount one or several HD Mini Bullet Cameras inside or outside the cockpit.

Aviation Grade HD Cabling

Aviation grade jacket rated to FAR 25 standards provides maximum protection and performance.

Military Grade Connectors

Connect your cameras with ruggedized and weatherproof Military Grade connectors.

Live Viewing

Input loop-through provides a live output from HD-SDI, HDMI, and Composite inputs. Connect straight to your EFIS, monitor, or use one of the 7″ Datatoys monitors to keep an eye on the action in real time. Great for hook operators or pilots who want to watch their tail rotor.

Protection for your AirKnight

Great Warranty with Excellent Support!

A one year warranty that covers your unit front to back. At Datatoys we take pride in our customer support. Just call us (414) 639-9085!