The blending of television broadcasts with the Internet is considered by many in the industry as the future of video; and there are video transport products available to support Internet-protocol (IP) video streaming.
Broadata Communications Inc.’s Link Bridge HDMI-TXVideo transport equipment includes video hub devices and some producers say users who implement them are future-proofing their infrastructure. There are many different approaches with a few manufacturers and their products described here:
BROADATA COMMUNICATIONS INC.
There are five video formats Broadata Communications Inc.’s Link Bridge Mini product line accepts—S-Video or composite Video, RGB, HDMI, HD-SDI and DVI—according to Devan Cress, a company sales manager. Broadata then converts and scales all of those to a DVI signal. It also offers bi-directional, RS-232 and analog audio.
All of those devices—including the LB-HDMI-TX—are not just a point-topoint solution using the same format, but the company has interoperable formats available including a box solution, a direct-pluggable solution and a cardcage configuration, Cress said. “I could input my computer’s RGB and then output it to one multi-mode fiber to a direct pluggable in the back of a monitor,” he said. All of those products are HDCP-compatible and have automatic EDID, he said.
Cress said many customers want to know how this is done over one fiber. He explained that each one of the devices has channel optics inside it. Four of those channels are for high-speed video, two are for low-speed things such as the bi-directional communication of HDCP, automatic EDID, RS-232 as well as analog audio, he said.
DAWNco.’s SATfiberThe SATfiber system (or satellite signal over fiber system) by DAWNco will transmit video longer than 300 feet without loss, freeing up users from the foot distance that is common with copper signal cable, said John Joslin, director of sales and marketing for DAWNco. Using fiber-optic cable, users are no longer limited to the 300 feet. Satellite antennas can be placed on the roof of a structure or on the other side of a parking lot.
The fiber-optic transmitters are placed by the satellite antenna and they are housed in a box in which they can operate in temperatures from –40 degrees Fahrenheit to at least 158 Fahrenheit, Joslin said. The power supply is by the dish and placed next to the satellite antenna. The fiber-optic cable is plugged into the box and signals are carried over the long distance.
“It could be 300 feet; it could be 1,000 feet; it could be a mile to the receive point. That’s where the fiber-optic receivers are. They convert the fiberoptic signals back to co-axial RF signals, and they are then fed into the standard satellite receivers — long distances without loss,” he said.
The advantage to using the SATfiber system is that satellite-delivered content eliminates the 300- foot limit on where an antenna associated with copper wire is placed, Cress said. If an organization wants to use a satellite system to receive video, but there is a limit on where an antenna can be located, that is an issue; but with the SATfiber system that problem is solved, he said.
DVI Over FiberEmcore Corp. offers its DVI Over Fiber (over a single fiber), which has “a scaling capability inside the receiver side,” said Alon Dagan, director of product development video for Emcore. “The nice thing about this system is you can transport any signal you can plug and play,” he said. “The receiver side will detect the native resolution and will automatically take the input source and scale it to the solution,” he said. That can save a lot of time when setting up the system, which is an advantage to this product, he said.
MEDIA LINKS INC.
Media Links Inc.’s MD8000Media Links’ MD8000 is a fiber-optic transport for high-bit-rate contribution feeds that usually originate at the venues or production studios, and are transported over “layer one” fiber optic or “layer two or three IP networks,” said David Herfert, the company’s director of sales. The MD8000 is the flagship product line. It is a multiservice platform with network interfaces ranging from optical carrier (OC)-3 up to OC-192, as well as Ethernet IP interfaces from 1Gbps to 10Gbps per port, he said.
The MD8000 product line includes an integrated, redundant Layer 2 Ethernet switch along with the media adaptation codecs, according to Herfert. That capability enables the MD8000 system to be utilized as a single platform at any location replacing media adaptors, edge switching equipment and SONET/ SDH grooming equipment. That reduces the number of managed elements in the network and results in lower capital and operational expenses, as well as higher overall reliability.
“The quality of the video and the latency fits into a lot of applications in the government space where latency and delay is critical from the telemetry standpoint on videotaping some of the events that occur on some of the military ranges,” Herfert said. The MD8000 is used by The White House to provide feeds to Camp David.
MEDIA TRANSPORT SOLUTIONS
Media Transport Solutions’ MSP-300The MSP-300 multiservice platform by Media Transport Solutions (MTS) allows the distribution of SoI video and NIP data over existing SDI connections or dark fiber connections, said Paul Atwell, the company’s president. The MSP300 can use connections from 270 Mbps to 1.5 Gbps—depending the type of service that is in place—to 3 Gbps from all of those protocols, he said.
The MSP-300 supports many advanced features such as the transmission of two-way video trunks. Each video trunk carries a separate video signal. This feature allows broadcasters and carriers to support two-way transmission of video services using only one small platform, and thus, cut capital expenditure by half. In addition to supporting two-way coaxial video trunks, the MSP-300 adds another dimension to its flexibility by supporting an optical fiber trunk link. Customers can switch back and forth from a coaxial trunk to an optical trunk by simply flipping a selection switch, MTS says.
The advantage to using the MSP-300 is, if an organization has an existing SDI transport, they can use the leftover bandwidth that is not taken up for video transport for IP transport. “So instead of having to have a video connection and IP connection, that allows you to combine both of those services onto one transport platform,” he said. The MSP300 “allows you to plug a video circuit into something that hosts IP connectivity.”
MultiDyne’s HD-4400 SeriesThe HD-4400 Series 3 Gbps Fiber Transport from MultiDyne features up to four channels per card, said Joe Commare, the company’s vice president of marketing and business development. The channels can be straight one-to-one or they can be CWDM cascading cards with up to 18 signals on a single fiber. Each card has a built-in cross point. With that cross point, through the software interface, you can turn and control the cross point.
The HD-4400 provides users with a lot of flexibility in terms of not having to put patches in the system with the ability to do this through software frees up a users’ engineering team to work on other things, Commare said. In addition, the fiber-optic connectors in the back of each card are “blind meetings,” so users “don’t have to worry about pulling fibers through your card frame. They are fully ‘hot-swappable’ and are covered by MultiDyne’s seven-year warranty,” he said.
Signiant’s Managers+Agents dashboardSigniant has specialized products for video transport and the movement of very large media files at an accelerated fashion, said Lisa Clark, vice president of marketing for Signiant. Those video transport products are Managers+Agents and Media Exchange, she said.
Managers+Agents facilitates the automated movement of media between systems, and includes a workflow designer that enables the agents to tell the media where it needs to go to, as well as from where. It works in tandem with Media Exchange, she said. Signiant’s “products are very intelligent,” and with the automation feature the systems “understand the format of the media, and where it needs to go,” she said.
Media Exchange is a user-driven transport of media and unlimited file sizes, providing all the acceleration and security needed, along with centralized management, Clark said. The centralized visibility enables users to see who is moving media where and when. Government users of those products include the Library of Congress and the Public Broadcasting System, she added.
Z-Band Video’s GigaBUDBoth the GigaBUD and GigaBOB are active, not passive, video transport devices offered by Z-Band Video, said Z-Band Vice President Dick Snyder.
While the Broadband Uniform Distribution 24-port unit GigaBUD has been called a “switch,” it is an RF video hub, Snyder said. The 860 MHz video- distribution hub can provide distribution of 134 analog channels or hundreds of digital channels, including high-definition channels (54 MHz–860 MHz). The GigaBUD splits, amplifies, slopes and recombines RF broadband signals. It also provides cascading capability for connecting to other hubs in a star topology; and bi-directional capability for remote/reverse broadcasts from all drops.
Z-Band Video’s GigaBOBThe Shielded Powered Balun video distribution system GigaBOB facilitates the “convergence of voice, data and video over the same cabling plant,” Z-Band said. The GigaBOB offers a simplified design and installation, while it adds to and changes video distribution infrastructure while electronically ensuring high-quality images.
What Z-Band is doing is enabling the integration of RF and IP Video, according to Snyder. “Z-Band Video’s products are designed to use the Ethernet infrastructure; and we use, as a backbone, RG-6 or RG-11, or single-mode fiber or multi-mode fiber; and that’s our backbone over CAT 5 or CAT 6 cable,” he said. Users who opt for CAT 6, future-proof their infrastructure for the IPTV, or streaming TV, that is eventually coming, he added.
Broadata Communications Inc.:
Media Links Inc.:
Media Transport Solutions: