PBS Stations Install T-VIPS Gear to Transmit Video over IP

WNET/Thirteen in New York selected the T-VIPS TVG420 ASI to IP Gateway solution to transmit the stations’ locally produced programming over an IP network to the PBS Network Operations Center in Alexandria, Va. WNET/Thirteen is a leading producer of programming for the PBS Network. PBS, the nation’s premiere public broadcasting network, broadcasts four HDTV and eight SDTV services to its network of over 360 member TV stations.

After encoding the HD video to a 30 MB MPEG-2 ASI transport stream, WNET uses the T-VIPS TVG420 ASI to IP Gateway to move the compressed digital video over a high-performance OC 3 IP network to PBS’ NOC for HDTV broadcast nationwide. At the PBS NOC, the video enters the facility-wide workflow where it’s decoded back to ASI-HD video for broadcast.

“We’re extremely pleased with the reliability and performance of the T-VIPS TVG420 Gateway solution,” said Jeff Dockendorff, associate director of engineering for WNET, the PBS affiliate serving the New York Tristate area. “Our goal is to deliver a very high-quality product to PBS, and with the TVG420, the picture quality is exceptional.” Since the TVG420 was installed during the summer of 2010, WNET has used it to transmit many high-definition PBS productions to the network, including the weekly newsmagazine show “Need To Know” and “From Vienna: The New Year’s Celebration 2011” -- an annual “Great Performances” event featuring the Vienna Philharmonic in concert.

In Boston, PBS affiliate WGBH, employs the T-VIPS CP510 Transport Stream Processor to filter select services from the WGBH-DT transport stream for delivery to Thames Valley Communications, a cable television, high-speed Internet, and digital phone service provider in Groton, Conn. The T-VIPS CP510 enables flexible adaptation and filtering of MPEG transport streams and component filtering, as well as PSI/SI/PSIP table updates.

“WGBH looked at dedicated circuits for delivery to Thames cable but the cost was prohibitive,” said Michael Foti, Director of Engineering for WGBH. “I’d seen a demo of video over IP using the TVG420 and was impressed with its performance over the public Internet. We had to put something together fast with little budget, and the T-VIPS demo came to mind.”

While Thames Valley had been able to receive WGBH’s signal via satellite, in the Spring of 2010 that feed became unavailable. The communications provider terminated the signal at that time, along with the Boston-area NBC, ABC and CBS affiliates. “We could still receive WGBH’s signal through a fiber connection but that was prohibitively expensive,” explained Carl Andersen, director of programming for Thames Valley Communications, Inc. “To be competitive in our market, we needed to find a more cost-effective way to get WGBH back onto our service. Representatives from WGBH demonstrated the TVG420 ASI to IP Gateway for us, and we realized that it solves our problem very affordably because it sends a high-quality video signal in real-time over IP.”