Pebble Beach Systems Utilizes NDI for Low-latency Monitoring of Virtualized Environments

Playout operators benefit from instantaneous confidence monitoring of IP Video streams
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Weybridge, UK and Broomfield, CO., USA, September 7th, 2017Pebble Beach Systems, a leading automation, content management and integrated channel specialist, today announced its integration with the NDI IP video standard. Pebble’s integration was focused on removing objectionable monitoring delays that can be inherent to real-time video over IP virtualized workflows, and it has adopted NDI technology to provide low-latency confidence monitoring for its virtualized Orca software-defined integrated channel solution. This development increases Orca’s suitability for the playout of high value live, reactive channels and latency-sensitive applications. 

NDI provides a low-latency, light-weight, frame accurate video protocol, giving Pebble’s customers less than one frame of delay when confidence monitoring channel-in-a-box (Ciab) or virtualized playout systems over an IP network. “If an operator is rolling a commercial break on top of a live feed, it gives them instantaneous feedback that the commercial break has actually started, the moment they press the button,” said Ian Cockett, CTO of Pebble Beach Systems. “When switching between live sources, they can immediately see that they’ve made the correct selection. Whereas monitoring an H.264 compressed output can mean a delay of 5 or 6 seconds before they see a picture change, which is far from ideal.”

This new development removes the classic objection from operators that require instantaneous feedback when switching live events. Using NDIas a point to point link over a TCP/IP network can deliver full quality 1080p video. However, that quality might require a 100Mb connection. For simply previewing video in the control room, a reliable confidence monitor feed can be obtained over a much smaller, 10Mb connection, greatly reducing the costs for real-time monitoring. Multiple preview streams can be enabled to simulate traditional preview and program monitors.

“A clip-based channel, complete with sophisticated graphics, can easily be put in the cloud and simply turned on,” says Cockett. “The real challenge has always been with fast-turnaround, live sports and events that require manual intervention. Previously, it’s been difficult for those workflows to adopt virtualized or CiaB technology monitored over IP because of the immediacy that operators expect. We’re happy to announce that it’s no longer the issue it once was.”