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2016 NAB Product Review: Signal Processing

Television is now poised to transition to the world of ultra-high definition, high dynamic range, extended color gamut, coupled with the move to the all-IP television plant where this beautifully detailed content is generated and made ready for delivery to the viewer. But no matter how sophisticated the creation and delivery portions of the video chain become, there’s one element that isn’t going to change and that’s the need for signal processing. Based on the amount and depth of signal processing gear on display at the 2016 NAB Show, manufacturers have their collective fingers on the industry’s pulse and are ready for just about any conceivable requirement.

Digital Alert Systems
demonstrated integration of its DASDEC Emergency Alert System messaging platform with SAM’s ICE channel-in-a-box automated playout technology. The collaboration has resulted in a simpler approach to messaging and smoother flow of emergency information. The company also announced a partnership with Broadstream to integrate the DASDEC and CAP messaging platform with Broadstream’s OASYS playout product.

unveiled a multi-person version of its CC2 closed captioning system. It uses a powerful voice server to convert voice-to-text and can serve up to eight people at a time.

Digital Nirvana introduced its new closed captioning services for broadcast and online videos, which includes post-production roll-up and pop-on captioning services for all technology platforms, as well as caption synchronization conversion to an IP format from broadcast or vice versa. The new closed captioning services can handle multiple SD and HD video formats and a wide range of caption file formats.

EEG spotlighted its first iCap-encoder for encoding closed captions to live production IP video. The new iteration supports compressed MPEG transport streams and uncompressed standards such as ASPEN and VSF TR-03, which both use the SMPTE 2038 standard for ancillary tracks.

Telestream has added closed captioning capabilities of its MacCaption (Mac)/CaptionMaker (Windows) standalone platforms to the company’s Vantage Media Processing Platform. Branded as “Timed Text Flip,” the new module brings integrated closed captioning technology into Telestream’s Vantage workflow.

showed its InstaView ultra-low delay encoder and decoder set. It provides quality identical to H.264, yet uses significantly less bandwidth and sports a 100ms delay. Also shown was the Futura II ASI+IP SD to 1080i MPEG-2 broadcast encoder.

Digigram premiered two HEVC/H.265-enabled versions of its AQORD video encoder which enable point-to-point broadcast contribution of 4K content to homes.

DTV Innovations demo-ed their Gryphon unit that offers low-latency video encoding for a range of signals including MPEG-4 with 4:2:2 10-bit HD. Gryphon includes an internal modular for DSNG, ENG or other applications and accommodates up to 16 audio channels. Also on display was the Falcon decoder that complements the Gryphon with decoding of MPEG-4 HD video and includes a satellite demodulator.

Harmonic ViBE 4K UHD encoderHarmonic, which recently acquired Thomson Video Networks, showcased new features for its ViBE 4K UHD encoder, featuring support for the HDR10 and Hybrid Log- Gamma (HLG) high dynamic range technologies and low-latency, high-bitrate 4:2:2 encoding for 4K contribution applications. It has also added UHD encoding capabilities to the ViBE CP6000 contribution platform.

Lawo spotlighted their V__remote4 system for video and audio signal transport and processing in WAN-based remote production work environments. It also includes video-over-IP coding.

Media Links MDP 3010 IP to 12K decoderMatrox unveiled a new version of its M264 encoder/decoder now with support for Sony XAVC formats, including 4K Intra Class 480 up to 59.94 fps. It’s designed for high-quality ingest, production and playout applications and its small size conserves rack space.

Media Links introduced its MDP 3010 IP to 12K decoder which provides high-speed IP to JPEG2000 processing, transforming IP packets into a video signal.

SAPEC featured its Avantos line of real-time HD/SD encoders and decoders based on the HEVC/H.265 compression standard.

Streambox rolled out their new AVENIRMicro and AVENIRDrone family of video encoders for bonded video applications.

Telairity has compressed 15 models of its Nexgen encoder line to just two: the BE8600 single-channel contribution encoder and the BE8700 multichannel distribution encoder. Nexgen systems auto-configure by input format, and have the capability to upgrade to new UHD formats.

Vitec demo-ed their MGW Ace portable HEVC appliance that encodes and streams video. Also shown was the MGW D265 portable HEVC IP decoder and MGW Vision 4K UHD hardware-based encoder.

showed their latest Synapse signal processing additions, including equipment for 4K production, Dolby E encoding and decoding, embedded audio, as well as timecode and VANC/HANC data.

Crystal Vision demo-ed a new Vision 3 3RU frame system that accommodates as many as 20 SDI audio/video cards, including keyers, converters, synchronizers, embedders, delay units and more. Also shown was the Safire 3-VF chroma keyer for the Vision 3 that works with 31 video standards. The company also unveiled the Vivis10S-VF video delay unit with framestore and took the wraps off their Indigo frame system that accommodates the full range of 75 interface and keying products.

DTV Innovations spotlighted their TSM- 2800 multiplexer which accepts as many as eight ASI or SMPTE-310M signals and combines them into a single TS output on dual DVB-ASI or SMPTE-310M outputs.

Elemental Technologies unveiled v2.9 of its suite of software-defined video solutions, now offering enhanced video ingest, processing and delivery capabilities. The latest version supports HDR, 8K encoding, HEVC and more.

For-A highlighted their new ACK-3000 chroma keyer which features “shadow light” technology for generating human shadows via 3D graphics.

Grass Valley demonstrated their new GV Node real-time IP processing and routing platform that supports IP/SDI workflows and SMPTE 2022-6 IP I/Os.

Imagine Communications unveiled Selenio One, a new software-based platform that accommodates a wide range of compression activities and allows service providers and content distributors to easily scale and adapt to new business requirements.

SAM debuted its IQ-Edge 3RU unit for providing IP video and audio processing across the company’s range of products, facilitating interoperability between switchers, routers, servers and other equipment.

debuted FS4, a DTV frame sync and up/down/cross conversion device which simultaneously processes as many as four channels of SD/HD/2K, or 4K video and features a 1RU footprint. It also performs a full range of audio processing, conversion and embedding. The company also introduced new entries in its Mini-Converter line, including the Hi5-4K-Plus 4K/UHD/3G-SDIto- HDMI 2.0 device and the HDP3 3G-SDIto- DVI-D scan converter. Also new were the U-TAP HDMI and U-TAP SDI capture devices, offering high-quality HD/SD capture through a bus-powered USB 3.0 port. The portable, cost-effective U-TAP products are compatible with OS X, Windows and Linux, and a broad range of software applications.

Barnfind Technologies introduced new additions to its BarnOne fiber platform, including SDI and ASI/IP conversion, as well as electrical-to-optic and optic-to-electrical conversion functionalities.

Cobalt Digital introduced the 9410 Series of 3G/HD/SD-SDI Single, Dual and Transceiver fiber openGear cards, which provide up to 40 channels of 3G/HD/SD-SDI extension in 2RU. Also new is the 9415DA-SFP-X, the first openGear card with externally accessed SFP cage and the MK2, the second generation of Cobalt’s Blue Box Group fiber-interface converter boxes. The MK2 version of BBG units supports Cobalt’s BBGConfig software for setup and status monitoring over USB.

DVEO spotlighted the CTDK, an inexpensive ASI-to-IP/IP-to-ASI device featuring real-time, low-latency bidirectional forwarding of SPTS or MPTS transport streams. It’s designed for delivering compressed content from TV stations to cable headends.

ESE showed off their ES-188E NTP-referenced master clock/timecode generator. The device receives nine-digit time information from an NTP server and converts this to several timecode formats, including SMPTE LTC, ESE-TC89, ESE-TC90, ASCII, EBU, IRIG-B and a 1PPS signal, allowing easy interface with computers, automation and clock systems.

For-A demo-ed the YEM Eletex SCV-8000, a new bidirectional converter for 4K and 8K Super Hi-Vision signals. It features automatic or manual mode switching and supports embedded audio, timecode and similar ancillary data.

Imagine Communications spotlighted their SelenioNext Just-In-Time transcoder designed for high-channel count live/linear applications. SelenioNext enables CSPs to store their content at a single bitrate.

Ross Video marked the NAB debut of its Ultrix Ultimate Connectivity Platform which combines multiple functions including multiviewer and audio processing into a single compact package. It supports SDI data rates from 270 Mbps to 12 Gbps and interfaces to HDMI, fiber and IP I/O.

SAM brought along their Alchemist XF frame rate and standards conversion for 4K HDR video. It’s a software-only implementation of the company’s Alchemist technology and provides faster than real-time processing of content.

Telestream debuted its new cloud service that provides high-quality video transcoding for all formats and codecs. It features certified ProRes presets that allow video file delivery to Apple standards.

took the wraps off the DLC910 multiviewer which supports a wide variety of signal formats and resolutions and adds four-channel capability to the company’s DigiLink media transport platform.

Apantac showcased their Universal Multimedia + Video multiviewer, featuring HDMI/DVI inputs and contained on an openGear card. It’s designed to complement the company’s OG-MiniQ product with SDI inputs.

Decimator Design debuted the MCDMON- 9S 1 to 9 channel multiviewer card that is fully compatible with openGear and can be controlled from DashBoard. It features custom layouts, 16-character UMD overlay per window and 16-channel audio metering overlay per window.

GMIT , a Rohde & Schwarz subsidiary, demo-ed their new iOS app VirtuWall that serves as a multiviewer and provides operators with real-time access to status information and measurements about their networks from virtually anywhere.

Lawo featured its “theWall” multiviewer app for setting up and controlling multiviewers. It assists in monitor wall configuration, signal routing, changing of mosaic layouts, and allows users to save and load preset configurations. Lawo also announced that it had partnered with Cobalt Digital to allow use of theWall with Cobalt’s OpenGear 9970-QS multiviewer card.

PESA Vidblox HTRPESA showcased their Vidblox HTR technology for dealing with signal losses in connection with video wall signal processors. The modules support multiple resolutions, provide four I/O ports and can function as a transmitter or receiver.

Volicon highlighted a number of enhancements to their multiviewer, including an option for the Observer Media Intelligence Platform providing multiviewer displays along with frame-accurate data for monitor walls or users’ desktops.

introduced the HELO standalone streaming and recording device that provides H.264 bitrates of up to 20 Mbps, accommodates video resolutions of up to 1080p/60 and features both HDMI and SDI I/O. It allows the recording of content to SD cards, USB drives or networked storage at the same time streaming is taking place.

Akamai demonstrated new capabilities to help improve overall performance of over-the-top (OTT) video services and support growing demand for 4K and virtual reality content. The company showed how its accelerated ingest capabilities can minimize the amount of time live video streams take to reach the Akamai CDN from their origination point. This faster transport is enabled through a combination of user datagram protocol (UDP) based delivery and dynamic encoder to entry-point mapping (DEEM), which provides improved throughput and automatically optimizes entry-points based on current internet conditions.

Evertz launched the 570EMR-TDM8-TS EMR TDM IP gateway which provides encapsulation/de-encapsulation of audio signals over IP and facilitates bulk distribution of TDM signals in and out of the IP realm.

Media Excel announced that its Hero Encoder product line now supports VP9/ DASH publishing of live streams to YouTube, the first carrier-grade product to do so.

Mirror Image unveiled their miPublisher system which allows broadcasters to monitor and record live video streams and deliver them via the company’s Dynamic Delivery Network (DDN). The company also showed its miAcceleration service for speeding up delivery of video files and other content.

Streampunk Media demonstrated Dynamorse, which incorporates reactive Internet technology for streaming and transforming SDI, RTP, TR-03, HTTP, WebRTC and files.

Teamcast launched its Stream4Cast, which is designed to be installed at the Network Operating Center (NOC or headend) and prepares the IP stream format to be transmitted in compliance with the new ATSC 3.0 Physical standard.

Tedial’s new Version Factory provides efficient and cost-effective support for OTT/VOD platforms, allowing a user with a single operator screen to handle millions of file I/O configurations. It interfaces to content management rights, traffic and work order systems, and provides complete scalability of operations.

Telestream Lightspeed Live StreamTelestream debuted Lightspeed Live Stream that receives SDI content via 3G baseband, as well as IP sources via 10 Gig Ethernet and then delivers these as RTMP or HTTP Live Streaming, and also MPEG DASH packages at a variety of resolutions.

VidOvation demonstrated their TV turnkey enterprise IPTV system that now includes full integration of DirecTV content, providing digital rights management, VOD, and digital recording with streaming to smart phones, desktop computers, tablets, smart TVs and set-top boxes.

Vitec demo-ed their Renewed Vision ProVideServer designed for house of worship streaming applications.

Wowza Media Systems highlighted their GoCoder for creating new apps that incorporate high-quality live video streaming in IOS and Android platforms, allowing users to broadcast live from mobile devices. In addition, the company showcased updates to Wowza’s Streaming Cloud end-to-end streaming service.