|Categories||File-based & IP, Workflow|
|Create Date||October 23, 2015|
|Last Updated||May 13, 2016|
IP-based solutions ready to revolutionise big venue broadcasting
John Halksworth, Senior Product Manager, Adder Technology
When it comes to broadcasting from large venues, IT, and in particular IP-based solutions are becoming more and more ingrained with the end to end broadcasting process. The convergence of IT and broadcast has led to organisations using a more integrated approach in their operations, taking advantage of the benefits of using this technology and the associated boost in connectivity.
This change has largely been made possible through the use of a standard IP network as a transport method around the broadcast workflow. As broadcasters further integrate IP into their infrastructures, entire convoys of OB trucks and legions of staff being required to cover major events may well become a thing of the past. IP represents efficiency, reliability and cost-effectiveness to broadcasters.
KVM makes location broadcasting easier, cheaper and more efficient
The main area where IP is making its mark is in KVM (keyboard, video and mouse). IP-based high performance KVM brings added functionality, scalability and cost savings, as it essentially turns a single screen into a portal for several computers – none of which need to be in the same physical location as the screen and input device. This opens up a world of possibilities for broadcaster’s at large venues, as operators can log into any machine and perform a number of functions from their specific location.
Fewer computers mean less space is required, less heat and noise is produced, and less air conditioning is required. Fewer staff members can perform the same amount of work by switching between machines using the same keyboard, monitor and mouse. Through the use of extension technology, USB and video signals can be delivered to the users, and therefore multiple machines can be controlled by one person or several people in different locations. Two operators can also view the same content on different screens. While only one user can actively work on the content and have control, the other can view it in real-time.
If a particular computer or individual system node fails, other areas are not affected, and individual components can be replaced quickly and easily, and this is particularly true of the switching component. IP-based high-performance KVM technology uses high specification, off-the-shelf devices that can be easily obtained and are inexpensive to keep in stock.
Also, if all machines are linked via a high-performance KVM system, the failure of one piece of equipment is easily handled. An operator can simply move into another studio and access the same computer from a new workstation.
Major Australian arts venue reaps benefits of IP-based KVM
By way of an example of this system in action, one of Australia’s most famous landmarks and world-class performing art centres has had a huge amount of success by implementing an IP-based high-performance KVM solution for its AV suites. The digital KVM matrix was installed to enhance the performance of its recording facility, and to improve its operational flexibility.
The AV suites are located within the main shell of the expansive venue and are connected to every on-site editing booth via an advanced fibre-based digital network, providing unrivalled audio and visual quality.
The venue had tried a range of solutions, but required fanless remote units, compatible with Mac video outputs and with pixel perfect video. Working closely with technicians, the systems integrator proposed the use of the AdderLink Infinity solution, including the AdderLink Infinity Manager, which utilises IP-based high-performance KVM technology.
The AdderLink Infinity satisfied every requirement, providing complete operational flexibility. Plus, because it operated over IP, the infrastructure was already in place throughout the entire facility. Engineers at the performing arts centre have reported that the system ‘felt solid’ and they found the manager both intuitive and easy to use. Another benefit was the remote OSD function whereby video can be pushed to remote monitors.
As IP continues to be adopted throughout the broadcast workflow as a standard transport layer, organisations will enjoy a multitude of advantages, including enhanced cost-effectives, scalability, interoperability and functionality. IP-based KVM, particular IP-based high-performance KVM, is an excellent use case of how broadcasters can reap the benefits of this technology and provides the ideal platform to expand the use of IP further across organisations in this sector.