NAB Show Product Review: Test & Measurement

The technical side of television requires more than good eyes. Broadcast engineers must make objective, repeatable observations of signals, waveforms and values using test gear. We’re beyond saying “It’s leaving here okay” and letting the audience make their own subjective observations. It is far more efficient to test and verify, and there was plenty of new gear on display at this year’s NAB Show to do just that.


BRIDGE TECHNOLOGIES showed the VB288 Content Extractor, which delivers visual content, status displays and alerts to a virtual videowall display to be viewed through any web browser.

COBALT DIGITAL highlighted its 9970-QS quad-split card. It provides four SDI inputs (3G/HD/SD), all with frame sync and independent ARC capability. Multiple UMD per PiP, user, router source (Utah Scientific integration), and timecode are standard.

DIGIMETRICS launched Aurora 5, the next generation of its automated file-based QC product. Combined with CUDA GPU acceleration, Aurora 5 is the only QC solution that can test and play back IMF, including complex CPLs, and can test 4K in any other container or codec, including JPEG 2000, DPX, HEVC, H.264.

DIGITAL NIRVANA demonstrated the latest version of its Open Media Appliance, a feature-rich platform for its Monitor IQ broadcast monitoring and MediaPro content repurposing systems.

GRASS VALLEY launched GV Guardian, an SNMP, WMI, and Syslog-based remote monitoring tool that easily identifies the root causes of a failure, notifies responsible support personnel, and then aggregates all error logs and hardware failure data into a single location for analysis and/or handoff to a Grass Valley Technical Assistance Center engineer.

INEOQUEST TECHNOLOGIES debuted a new analytics platform that harvests behavioral and operational analytics across adaptive streaming networks allowing comprehensive analysis of video assets, devices, protocols, and end user behavior.

MEDIAPROXY highlighted the latest update to its LogServer ASI logging and monitoring platform, now with LogJam Remote and Extract to Remote features, enabling automated transcoding and burn-in workflows to remote storage or cloud-based applications. The company’s LogServer IP now offers DVR/PVR-style clip-based MPEG recording, ideal for competitive logging of native broadcast quality media.

Seth Vermulm talks about the new HEVC analysis option on the Sencore CMA 1820 compressed media analyzer MIRAVID announced further enhancements to its TeleSight real-time multiviewer and analysis solution, with support for monitoring loudness as specified under the CALM Act ATSC A/85 RP.

SENCORE showed its new VB7880 server addition to Sencore’s VideoBRIDGE monitoring system. It provides visual content extraction, network status, and alerts to a virtual video-wall display that can be viewed through any web browser by NOC operators, executives or engineers on the go. The company has also added new HEVC analysis capabilities to its CMA 1820 compressed media analyzer.

SNELL announced new signal assurance and monitoring modules, including modules for lip sync, intelligent content monitoring, quad split monitor output and monitoring by exception.

NEVION demonstrated new Flashlink IP components, including a high-power 2RU modular frame offering high density and compact size, new multichannel video, audio and data multiplexer and VikinX eMerge, a media Ethernet router. All new solutions integrate with the Flashlink Live Media Networking application and existing Flashlink products.

TRIVENI DIGITAL launched StreamScope MT-50, an enhanced version of the company’s real-time DTV transport stream analysis and troubleshooting tool. Operators can now more effectively monitor and analyze DTV transport streams and comply with worldwide standards to ensure a superior QoS.

VIDEO CLARITY demo-ed Video Clarity RTM, an automated QoE monitor that measures the quality between two points. The company’s ClearView Extreme provides a suite of repeatable, objective quality measurements that closely mimic subjective results. The company also launched its MOVIE (Motion-based Video Integrity Evaluation) platform for its ClearView Video Quality Analyzers.


Christian Young adjusts the Leader Instruments LV5490 4K multi SDI monitor with updated features.LEADER introduced its FS3140 quality-control software, which combines powerful automated final analysis plus waveform and vectorscope displays. Leader also showed its LV5490 picture and signal monitor that incorporates test-pattern generation, support for two-sample interleaved 4K image transmission and an HD-SDI output.

LYNX TECHNIK debuted Testor | lite 3G, with support for SD/HD/3G 4:2:2 and dual-link video formats. It generates two simultaneous outputs, as well as one sync output. It also generates a 3D test pattern either as two separate signal outputs (left eye, right eye) or one 3G-SDI 1080P dual-stream signal (Level B).

PHABRIX debuted its TAG Sx handheld analyzer/monitor for SD/HD, featuring a comprehensive audio toolset including full support for metadata, levels and logging of Dolby E, D and D Plus. Version 9 software for the Rx rackmount test and measurement series includes new full screen waveforms and multichannel closed caption display: 608/708 and OP47.

ROHDE & SCHWARZ showed its VTC, VTE and VTS video testers supporting both analysis and generation of HDMI signals with resolutions up to 4K.

TEKTRONIX launched the WFM2300 portable waveform monitor, which includes all of the features of its WFM2200, plus enhanced measurement capabilities and eye pattern and Jitter measurement capability, as well as cable simulator margin tests. The company also conducted a technology demonstration of its 4Kupgraded WFM8300 Waveform Monitor with UHDTV1 (3840x2160) content. Also new is QCloud, Tektronix’s file-based media QC solution, optimized to run on cloud platforms. Tektronix also added HEVC deep dive Elementary Stream analysis capabilities as a standard option to its MTS4000 MPEG Test and Analysis System.

VOLICON debuted new Review, Comply, and Monitor applications within its Observer Media Intelligence Platform. The three applications provide tools to evaluate and validate the content of advertising, promos, and programming; assuring the adherence of audio, video, and required metadata to applicable standards and regulations; and monitoring and maintaining the integrity of content and service delivery.

Jose Eduardo Favaro (L) answers questions about the Volicon Capture that allows the ingest of media from any location into MAM.RF

BROADCAST DEVICES and DAVICOM demonstrated their joint release of the first direct-connection interface between their products allowing remote site monitoring.

ROHDE & SCHWARTZ showed its R&S BTC broadcast test center, a reference signal generator featuring multiple analysis functions and automated tests for audio, video and multimedia applications.

WORLDCAST SYSTEMS/AUDEMAT displayed mobile metering with Goldeneagle ATSC with precision measurements and GPS location data.

Z TECHNOLOGY released MeterMatePro software for use with its R-506 and R-507 Field Strength Meters. The meters provide automated signal coverage measurement when used with a PC, MeterMatePro software, and a GPS receiver. A new optional MetermatePro application provides clear comma-delimited text files of frequency, signal strength, and GPS location on up to 15 frequencies in a single drive.


DIGITAL NIRVANA launched AnyStream IQ 2.0, the latest version of its cloud-based solution for reliably recording, logging and monitoring OTT content. New features include support for HDS capture and Advanced Alert Reporting. HDS (HTTP Dynamic Streaming) capture enables the user to record and monitor HDS streams in multiple bit rates or in a pre-selected bit rate and extract and display captions.

SENCORE introduced new features for its Videobridge VB330 probe including OTT V2 monitoring tools which extend HLS, SmoothStreaming and MPEG-DASH capabilities with support for RTMP and subtitle tracks, and provide active OTT profile alignment tests and manifest file verification.