SVG Sit-Down With Canare Corp. of America’s Shinichi Minowa
CEO of the cable/connector supplier reports on solutions optimized for next-gen tech
Canare has made its name in the broadcast industry developing, manufacturing, and providing audio and video cables, connectors, patchbays, and fiber-optic products. As the industry embraces 4K and HDR, the company is rolling out 12G-SDI–based technologies that it says will allow broadcasters to make the next-gen transition without the costly infrastructure upgrades required to convert to IP. SVG sat down with Canare Corp. of America CEO Shinichi Minowa to discuss the promise of 12G-SDI for 4K UHD production, the company’s continued expansion globally, and the latest products it has introduced for live sports production.
How is the rise of next-gen formats – like 4K and HDR – impacting your technology roadmap?
Canare is steadfast in cabling innovation by developing new, universal products that support emerging technologies with unmatched features for applications in broadcast facilities, stadiums, mobile truck productions, and universities. As the industry transitions from conventional HD imaging to 4K UHD, Canare is right on track for developing and delivering high-performance solutions for economically transporting these very high-data-rate 12G signals. In line with its roadmap, Canare is ready to assist customers with a line of coaxial cable and connectors that are specially optimized for high performance at 12 Gbps, making it economical and convenient to transport 4K signals at distances up to 100 meters via copper.
How much demand have you seen for 12G-SDI solutions for 4K production? As many in the industry look to move to IP, how do these solutions fit into the HD- and 4K-production marketplace?
Canare is seeing a tremendous demand for 4K UHD as it becomes the dominant industry standard for sports, live events, and commercial production. At the moment, the demand is much greater in Asia Pacific, but North America is gearing up, recognizing that IP-based solutions are higher in cost, whereas 3G solutions can be easily and efficiently modified to transition to a 12G solution, especially if Canare connectors and panels are already in place.
What are the latest Canare product releases in 2017, and how have they been received in the marketplace?
At NAB 2017, Canare announced its new 12G coax solution and tactical 7T and 9T SMPTE cables. The 12G coax solution consists of cables and connectors specifically designed to maximize 4K-camera transmission, with superior performance at distances up to 100 meters. The only coax offering with a cable, connector, and panel solution that’s optimized for 4K transmission, Canare’s 12G solution also supports 3G and 6G signals. The 7T/9T HFO camera cables are ideal for remote applications in harsh environments, offering superior mechanical and flexible properties. The cable lengths, which range from 10 through 200-plus meters, are crush- and impact-resistant and have cyclic flexing that exceeds that of MIL.
What was the marketplace’s reaction to the Canare’s release of a 12G coax solution for 4K transport at the NAB Show in April?
Canare’s 12G coax solution was very well-received. We spoke to many customers who are looking for economical and reliable solutions to support their future use of 4K UHD television signals and feel that the most practical way for handling 4K is via coax. Canare’s line of 75-ohm coaxial cable and BNC connectors are ideal for those customers.
What trends and popular requests are you seeing among your sports customers?
Keeping in mind plans to move to 12G, customers are putting new infrastructure in place that can easily be adapted when they are ready for the transition. Given the specific and varying needs of our customers, we are seeing a spike in customized fiber and COPS panel solutions. Canare’s COPS-F Series HFO camera- and cable-connector panels can be custom-configured to provide a seamless, reliable interface for stadiums and ENG vans, ensuring live broadcasts are transmitted flawlessly.
Are there any recent Canare sports-related deals or projects that you found interesting and can discuss?
Canare has a rich history in providing technologies to meet the demanding requirements of the sports-broadcasting industry, including college stadiums, and arenas for national ice hockey, basketball, baseball, and football teams. To accommodate these facilities’ broadcast needs, including audio and video feeds for TV and radio stations, Canare SMPTE HFO camera connector panelssed as part of the technology that’s integrated. Canare works closely with leading integrators on such projects helping to make potentially complicated installations straightforward and easy.
Canare continues to expand globally, including a recent office in Germany. How has this expansion impacted your business, and how do you see it continuing to expand in the coming years?
As a top cable provider for the Japanese market, Canare’s global customer base continues to grow, including recent new offices in Germany and India. To accommodate its rising install base in the U.S., Canare Corp. of America has recently increased its sales force and added customer-support services to cover three U.S. time zones: Eastern, Central, and Pacific.