NAB 2017: Wheatstone, Artel Team Up To Demo At-Home Production, Virtualized Audio Services
Wheatstone (N6531), a leader in IP audio networking, will partner with Artel (N4511), supplier of real-time multimedia delivery, in a demonstration of at-home production using virtualized audio services across a wide-area network. The demonstrations will take place in the companies’ respective booths.
At-home production is a growing trend, thanks to the operating efficiencies associated with having less equipment and staff onsite at remote locations. The two companies will demonstrate how broadcasters can control audio services remotely and in real time.
In the demonstration, foosball players in the Wheatstone booth will be knocking around balls in a simulated sports event, which will be captured on camera and the feed picked up for final mixing and production using the Dimension Three (Touch) IP audio networked console. Artel’s InfinityLink broadcast media-transport chassis will provide the Ethernet links to the IP audio console as well as the fiber link to the Artel booth a few aisles away. On the same bidirectional fiber link, feed from a GoPro on a drone in the Artel booth will be networked into the WheatNet-IP using an I/O BLADE, or access units
“This is very timely as broadcasters continue to strive for efficiencies in their operations,” says Rafael Fonseca, VP, product management, Artel.
Audio routing, control, mixing, and processing are accomplished over the WAN through Wheatstone’s WheatNet-IP network of virtual audio services. I/O BLADEs make up the WheatNet-IP and store the virtualized services that enable operators to manage almost any audio function from the network. Included in each I/O BLADE are two stereo 8×2 utility mixers and audio-processing tools to mix various sources from the network and process the resultant mixes. In addition to gain control, pan/balance, and direct audio monitoring and metering, BLADEs also provide crosspoint control for the entire signal matrix, so zero latency IFB feeds can be created and controlled at any location.
For the NAB 2017 demonstration, a small rack of equipment not much larger than a mini refrigerator takes the place of a large mixing console with routing and outboard gear on the venue side. Included in the rack as part of the WheatNet-IP network of virtual audio services are I/O BLADEs: one to retrieve SDI audio directly from the camera, de-embed it, and send it “home” as discrete audio, and another to ingest audio feeds. The M4IP-USB mic processor ingests audio feeds but is also an I/O BLADE device on the WheatNet-IP audio network, so mic-processing adjustments can be made locally at the venue or remotely from the home IP audio console. An Ethernet Cisco edge switch is also included in the rack to network it all together.
The demonstration will show how easy it is to control levels remotely from the studio IP console as well as trigger IFBs and turn mics on or off. It will show broadcasters how to mix and process the audio locally or remotely in real time and how the WheatNet-IP audio network itself can serve as an IFB backbone that is routable by simply triggering crosspoints in the network, with zero latency between talent and crew in the field.
WheatNet-IP is AES67-compatible and designed specifically for robust broadcast applications. WheatNet-IP audio networking is already in use across major U.S. and global markets.
“With these and other audio services virtualized on the network as software, rather than as external single-point-of-use hardware devices or as features limited to the console, the WheatNet-IP audio network makes it possible to seamlessly integrate functions between a home studio and a remote event across a WAN,” says Wheatstone Director of Sales Jay Tyler.
Other Wheatstone IP-networked consoles will be available for demonstration as well: the Series Two and Series Four mixers, D8-EX audio board, and large-format IP-64.
Visit booth N6531 or N4511 for a personal demonstration or watch Wheatstone’s Facebook page for live streams periodically throughout the show.
In addition to the live production demonstration, Wheatstone staff will be talking about virtualized audio services at several engineering sessions during the show. On Saturday April 22, at 9 a.m., Phil Owens and Lon Neumann will present The IP-Based Audio System and the At-Home Production Model in Room N258. On Tuesday April 25, at 2 p.m., Neumann will present Extending the IP Audio Network Across a WAN in Room N258.