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BMS Announces Expansion, Upgrades

by Craig Johnston~ April 25, 2006


Broadcast Microwave Services (BMS) kicked off its NAB2006 press event Monday morning talking about its new home in Poway, Calif. "We celebrated our 24th anniversary with a move into new, expanded headquarters," said Rob Bauer, director of marketing and sales at BMS. "We've increased our facilities by 60 percent."

He noted the move allowed the company to expand its manufacturing floor, its R&D facilities and its business office space. "The purpose of this expansion is not just for the broadcast auxiliary services project that is going on," he said, though more space was needed for BAS equipment production and warehousing.

"This is really for the overall growth, not only existing but anticipated growth, of the company into several market segments. We're growing fairly rapidly into the public and private surveillance systems, the public safety market, and for government security and surveillance in addition to the broadcast market."

Bauer noted delays in broadcaster negotiations and equipment inventorying in the Sprint/Nextel 2 GHz relocation project.

During the interim period, "BMS has not been sitting on the sidelines stocking its shelves with stale technology," he said. "We've been developing new technologies, new features to our existing products that are now in production, ready for this project."


BMS Product and Applications Manager Tom Smith described the company's new Coder II line of microwave products, beginning with the Field-Coder II.

"It builds on our very successful Carry-Coder II, and puts it into a better format for tripod and portable types of applications," he said. It is rugged and weatherproof, operates on AC and DC, and takes composite, SDI and ASI inputs.

The Central-Decoder II is designed to be dropped into many different central receive sites. "It's both analog and digital, and contains multiple channel plans," Smith said. "It's meant for 24 hours-a-day, seven days-a-week service, continuous duty."

BMS has upgraded its Truck-Coder II, making it interoperable with other microwave manufacturers' equipment. And it unveiled a simplified menu for the device, making it easier for non-engineering employees to run.

Smith talked about IP features that can be added to the Truck-Coder II using the TCII Media Router, which creates an IP link to the studio over microwave. "What it effectively does is it makes a virtual private network for the broadcaster. Even though you might have an interruption in the path, it continues to operate by virtue of the cellular return path."

"In the total absence of the microwave [path], it will continue to operate so you can continue to trickle files back to the studio. Once the link is established, the operator doesn't really have to intervene."

The Truck-Coder II also allows engineering staff to create up to 100 presets that can be called back to handle individual microwave transmission challenges.

The company found a universal challenge facing broadcaster customers: operating more equipment with fewer people. "The value-proposition from BMS," Bauer said, "is that we make equipment that is easy to operate."

© 2006 NAB