InfoComm 2019: Vendors Parade Latest in Broadcast Technology
More than 1,000 exhibitors set up shop in Orlando’s Orange County Convention Center
Product manufacturers and tech-hungry consumers traveled to Orlando last week for InfoComm 2019, which boasted a record attendance of 44,129. The annual pro-AV event at the Orange County Convention Center featured a wide range of technology, including 8K, projectors, LED displays, video over IP, and PTZ cameras.
CLICK HERE for an overview of audio at InfoComm 2019.
Legrand AV Division
InfoComm is always the biggest event of the year for Legrand, and, in its AV Division’s second-year, the company made a big splash this year. The booth’s emphasis was on making venue operation easier with reliable tools for tech installation and durable design options. Having recently announced a partnership between its Middle Atlantic brand with LundHalsey, a UK-based developer of control-room furniture, Legrand AV displayed these desks, which are constructed of hard laminate and equipped with user-friendly customizable lighting.
For the venue market, the company’s new line of rack rails provides a time-efficient approach to installation. The rack rails permit multiple styles of production and cater to the broadcaster with options for a fiber or IP infrastructure. A system of interchangeable and scalable widgets allows a quick and simple setup that keeps an entire production’s worth of equipment organized.
Blackmagic Design is giving the industry an opportunity to dive head first into 8K productions with the ATEM Constellation 8K. Some of the system’s highlights are a calibration model and a HyperDeck with recording options in 4K, HD, and 8K as well as compatibility with up to eight different devices. The ATEM Constellation 8K can also be deployed for HD and 4K workflows.
DiGiCo showcased a full menu of audio offerings at InfoComm 2019, including selected SD-Range consoles (SD12 and SD7 Quantum). Providing 64 input and 64 output channels at both 48 kHz and 96 kHz, the new DMI (DiGiCo Multichannel Interface) card is equipped with primary and secondary (backup) Gigabit Ethernet ports and uniquely offers a Sample Rate Conversion feature. Natively allowing DiGiCo products to communicate with other devices on a Dante network, the DMI-Dante 64@96 effectively doubles the previous DMI Dante card’s I/O channel count at the higher 96kHz resolution.
In addition, DiGiCo announced Mustard, a new set of algorithms and options for SD7 Quantum channel strip processing that offer enhanced flexibility and choice when extra control and creative adjustment are needed within a mix. Making full use of the Quantum engine’s new seventh-generation FPGA infrastructure, the Mustard channel can be used in conjunction with the standard SD processing to add pre-amps, filters, EQ, gate, and a selection of compressor types to any existing channel strip.
The Mustard Tube options include a fully controllable Pre-Amp Modeler, which gives users access to every aspect of their frontend drive, and the Mustard Dynamics include vintage VCA and optical compressor types that emulate some of the best-known devices available. All of this will enable users to add classic character and new textures to drums, bass, vocals, and guitars.
DiGiCo also introduced the Spice Rack, which delivers additional new processors that can be freely inserted on any channel type in any position. Controlled from the Master screen and its worksurface controls, the first addition to the Spice Rack will be a six-band compressor, which includes two floating bands and allows complete, detailed control of envelope shaping for definable frequency bands.
The SD12 and SD10 consoles have received software upgrades. With the SD12 96 upgrade, users can beef up their SD12 desks, expanding them from 72 to 96 channels and from 36 to 48 aux/sub groups. The new SD10+ upgrade comes free of charge. Available only for Core 2 consoles, it expands the already powerful SD10 from 132 to 144 input channels.
At a booth with a wealth of audio offerings, Riedel’s Bolero standalone wireless intercom system led the way. The product requires no IP configuration, and a new external power supply can power up to five antennas, so power and data redundancies are easily achieved. A new 1RU, half-width external interface box, with six analog 4-wires and three GPIOs, can be directly connected to any antenna and then patched into an existing intercom system.
The system is easily configured via a web GUI internal to the antennas. Other new capabilities provided by the Bolero update are individual rotary programming, Bluetooth headset support, and a new beltpack QuickMute feature that allows users to easily set the volume of all channels to zero.
Also exhibited at the Riedel booth were updates to the Artist-1024 intercom node and a new MediorNet processing app.
As a mainstay in the venue space, Ross Video’s XPression graphics package was on display with an overlay on a videoboard inside the booth. Among the gear targeted to the sports market were the Abekas Mira replay server, which anchors live-production workflows; the Ultrix-Fr5 routing/AV-processing software; the Ultritouch system-control panel for monitoring; and the Graphic production switcher.
Adder showcased the concepts of production flexibility and stability. The ADDERLink INFINITY 4000 Series, a high-performance 4K IP KVM matrix over a single fiber, has been designed to meet the 4K needs of systems integrators, professional AV, and digital-signage professionals. The product relies on its dual 10-Gb network ports to minimize redundancy and protect against network failure.
The ADDERLink ipeps+ offers enhanced remote-access functionality to industries where security and video quality are critical. The ipeps+ provides smooth-motion video at up to 30 fps with 24-bit color depth over IP.
AJA Video Systems
The Ki Pro GO and HELO video players were only two of the many products shown at the AJA Video Systems booth. Introduced at NAB 2019, the Ki Pro GO comes with both encoding and decoding of H.264 recording and playback, four 3G-SDI and four HDMI inputs, a layer of redundancy, and much more. Features of the HELO include portable, standalone 3G-SDI and HDMI source inputs, encoding of up to 1080p60 in H.264/MPEG-4, and two-channel stereo audio encoded up to 24-bit 48 kHz.
Avid’s VENUE initiative was on exhibit with its five S6L control-surface variants, including the newly available S6L-16C and S6L-24C control surfaces and the S6L-48D. Also on hand was a full range of engines and I/O racks, including the new Stage 32 and Local 16. With VENUE S6L, engineers are able to scale systems up or down to meet changing requirements for control, processing, and I/O. Engineers also have an identical user experience at their disposal, regardless of system configuration.
Camplex showed off its large grouping of fiber extenders, including applications for 12G-SDI, 4K HMDI, and 3G-SDI. The CMX-12GSDI-TR sends broadcast-quality 12G/6G/3G/HD/SD-SDI with embedded audio up to 6.2 miles over single-mode fiber. The CMX-HDMI-SFP extender delivers a crystal-clear 4K HDMI 2.0 18G signal over long distances for esports arenas, concerts, and stadium digital signage. The CMX-3GSDI-TR micro extender sends 3G/HD/SD-SDI up to 6 miles over one ST single-mode fiber and is suitable for camera and computer interfaces. The CMX-TAC-N-GO-3GTR system, used for 3G-SDI rapid field deployment in any environment, is designed for HDTV, LCD monitors, digital projectors, and more.
Clark Wire & Cable
Clark Wire & Cable displayed its four-channel Cat 6 and six-channel Cat 5 cables. These products come with multiple applications that allow mobility and durability. Other products included the Tactical Shield Cat 6A cables used for 10-Gbps data transmission and two SMPTE 2100 product lines: modular SMPTE enclosures and portable touchscreen SMPTE testers. The company’s partnership with the University of South Alabama was another highlight at its InfoComm 2019 booth.
Daktronics showcased its smaller videoboard displays, which offer AV professionals options ranging from 1.5 mm to 2.5 mm. The indoor videoboards supply venue integrators with a high-resolution image at a small footprint.
In the FOR-A booth, a big focus was on the company’s partnership with Variant Systems. The Envivo Replay — leveraged by many colleges and universities across the country, such as the University of Oregon and Western Michigan University — is an efficient tool for programs that produce content on a low budget. The system is operated with the help of a touchscreen user interface that shortens the learning curve for operators who may not have a high-level of technical skills. For a more traditional approach, the Envivo Replay is equipped with mouse and keyboard controls. Features include the ability to quickly add transition effects, construct a video-clip playlist during a production, and the seamless import/export of files. The Envivo Replay is integrated with multiple social-media platforms for the uploading of content.
Among the handful of products exhibited by IHSE USA were the Draco vario HDMI 2×1 switch, Draco ultra DP 240, and R488 Secure IP Remote Access (SIRA) gateway.
The Draco vario 2×1 HDMI KVM switch is a compact two-port solution that enables extended-distance connections between computer sources and user stations. Addressing market demand for increased security in connecting multiple computers in a single workstation area, the Draco vario HDMI 2×1 system is making it possible to leverage two remote computers or servers at one desk using a single keyboard, mouse, and display. The award-winning Draco vario 481 series extenders for HDMI enables signals to be shared across long distances over a single fiber or Cat X connection with perfect video quality and zero mouse latency.
The Draco ultra DP 240 supports refresh rates up to 240 Hz at full 1080p resolutions. The extender allows users to operate CPUs from devices at a remotely located workstation — supporting DisplayPort video devices, keyboards, and pointing devices — over a single duplex fiber cable. In esports, these devices allow ultra-fast response times with built-in USB supporting gaming keyboards.
Combining networked workstations and local computers under a single display-management system, the R488 SIRA gateway for KVM reduces the time and cost associated with managing multisite computer sources. It adds more flexibility to the Draco tera matrix series without sacrificing the philosophy of securely isolating the core matrix and signal management from TCP/IP. Encrypted signal transmission via IP ensures protection of intellectual property while still offering the most flexible access to matrices connected from remote locations via private or public networks.
Neutrik USA’s new 2-in, 2-out NA2-IO-DPRO Dante interface features two inputs switchable between mic, line, and AES/EBU signals plus two outputs switchable between analog line and AES/EBU. Two Dante ports provide either redundancy or device daisy-chaining. With its small size, metal construction, and removable rubber protector, the NA2-IO-DPRO offers a rugged, reliable solution suited to a wide range of applications.
NewTek’s NDI standard powered the AV-over-IP offerings at InfoComm 2019. Part of an initiative to push new ways of video, a vertical video monitor featured TriCaster software integration. Also, 16 NewTek hardware devices and an array of software tools were connected only to electricity and a 1-Gb Ethernet LAN and were controllable from any of the networked demonstration pods, allowing users to access and use any capability or feature from any device.
In celebration of the 10th anniversary of Panasonic’s PTZ camera line, the AW-UE4WG/KG was revealed as the successor to the popular AW-HE2 remote camera. Upgraded features include 4K resolution and an ultra-wide viewing angle of 111 degrees. The camera offers a 1/2.5-type 8M-pixels single sensor to capture ultra-high-quality 4K 3840×2160-resolution images and supports a variety of video formats with 30p/29.97p/25p. The product also provides a high level of connectivity with three video-output terminals of HDMI, LAN, and USB connectivity, alongside RTSP/RTMP support for direct live streaming to major platforms, such as YouTube. The camera can also be powered via USB cable, enabling a single-cable solution for video transmission, camera control, and power supply over a LAN or USB.
The AK-UE4 is set for release in October.
Teradek offered a line of PTZ cameras and products that assist live streaming. The Bolt PTZ camera comes with uncompressed 4K wireless technology and has a battery life of up to four hours. On the digital front, the Bond backpack is an HEVC/H.264 streaming solution, and the Core 2.0 management system allows live streaming and graphics integration from the cloud as well as failover methods for an accurate OTT production. The main emphasis of the Teradek booth was on supplying high-quality products with an emphasis on cost-efficiency.
VITEC presented a live demo of the EZ TV IPTV and digital signage solution, which is suitable for sports-venue IPTV and signage applications. The demo included EZ TV Media Library, which offers tools for archiving, recording, organizing, tagging, and visual search.
In addition, the company showcased time-synchronized playback for remote production or for any application where IP streams must be played back in sync on its MGW Ace encoder and quad-channel MGW Diamond HEVC encoders to MGW Ace decoders. VITEC also introduced the MGW Ace Decoder OG (OpenGear), a broadcast-quality, dense, multichannel IP decoder in the popular OpenGear-card form factor.
In the world of venue production, ENCO Systems is protecting its customers with royalty-logging to prevent any possible infringement. The company is also giving every fan an enjoyable experience with its work on the in-venue videoboard and surrounding digital signage. Automated captioning enables fans who may have hearing issues to stay updated on the action on the playing surface. enTranslate, the company’s translation service, is also available for those who are fluent in another language.
G&D North America
G&D North America specializes in KVM services, but IP transmission was also a focus at InfoComm 2019. The ControlCenter-IP, a matrix system for KVM-over-IP, enables distributed switching of computer signals over standard IP-based networks and features near-zero latency. The IP-based system comprises the central ControlCenter-IP unit and a series of IP extenders, which form a powerful matrix for KVM-over-IP transmission. The system excels with flexible transmission via Cat or fiber-optic cables over standard IP-based 1-Gbps networks.
Also, the Remote-Access CPU enables seamless integration of virtual machines in KVM installations. With a standardized overview, operators simply select the desired source, regardless of whether the computer is available in the server room or in the cloud.
And the DP1.2-VisionXG, a KVM extender for 4K and 8K video signals at 60 Hz, is uncompressed and latency-free. The system transmits 8K resolutions up to 10,000 meters via fiber optics and will provide an insight into the use of KVM systems in gaming and esports.
Marshall Electronics introduced HDR support for its CV420-CS, a compact true 4K60 camera. Built around a 12.4-megapixel, 1/1.7-in. sensor, the Marshall CV420-CS delivers crisp, clear 4096x2160p video with vibrant colors and fast frame rates. With support for HDR, the CV420-CS provides heightened dynamic picture quality, with better contrasts between bright white and dark black, producing a more realistic image quality.
The CV420-CS is suitable for use in live events — where large projection screens require true-4K-resolution image capture and HDR capabilities — as well as a range of pro-AV, production, sports broadcasting, and any other 4K-video workflows. It also offers true 4K resolution in 4096x2160p at 60/50 fps and comes packaged in a sturdy, discrete design that features a wide range of picture-adjustment controls. It has outputs of 12G/6G/3G/HD-SDI and HDMI 2.0 and has a varifocal or fixed CS/C lens-mount capability with DC Auto-Iris plug-in for custom lens adaptions.
Matrox highlighted the Monarch Edge 4K/multi-HD webcasting and remote-production encoder. For colleges and universities, this encoder offers a low-budget approach to high-quality live streaming over IP. With talkback communication and telestration, the cloud-based production solution has been trusted by multiple organizations, including SBG Sports Software, which has used the feeds as an educational tool for coaching and instruction.
Primeview showcased its latest video-wall developments, including the FusionMAX LED system and the Ultra Snello LCD systems. These highly integrated solutions incorporate the latest FHD and UHD video standards.
With the FusionMAX LED solutions, the embedded processor also incorporates video-wall scaling for big-picture mode to upscale non-FHD sources to FHD. Similarly, with the Ultra Snello LCD, embedded processing is capable of natively mapping UHD/4K content across the LCD matrix array.
The FusionMAX LED solutions are available in 110-, 138-, 165-, and 220-in. preconfigured FHD and UHD sizing. Moving away from the legacy technology of SMD and common anode LED, Primeview also gave FusionMAX Elite partners an inside look at the new 4-1 MiniLED in 0.9- and 1.2-mm-pixel pitches. These use common cathode technology to reduce power consumption while drastically improving contrast for better blacks.
CP Communications’ STREAM packages made their AV-industry debut at InfoComm 2019. Part of its new Red House family of streaming solutions, the STREAM line allows AV professionals and meeting planners to produce high-impact conferences or events anywhere in North America — and stream them to audiences around the world. Essentially, the STREAM line is a direct response to the changing content-creation and -distribution requirements in AV and broadcast as IP technology and cellular services grow more reliable and widely available.
This new line comprises three products: CamSTREAM, MultiCam STREAM, and Production STREAM. CamSTREAM is a single- or dual-camera acquisition system with streaming support over Ethernet, Wi-Fi, and bonded-cellular service. MultiCam STREAM is a scalable multicamera acquisition system for live-streamed and at-home productions. Its base configuration supports four cameras, 32 audio channels, and data (including return tally and four-wire intercom). Production STREAM is a multi-camera flypack acquisition system for onsite and remote productions with larger I/O signal requirements. It offers integrated video switching and Dante-enabled audio mixing to support venues and large events.
VidOvation focused on wireless connectivity with its presentation of ABonAir. The product’s structure of radio design and advanced MIMO technology allows camera operators and engineers to extend the range of connection to 2 miles without frequency interruptions. For productions within close proximity to the receiver, such as at the high school level, the VidOlink Reacher 3000 gives a range of up to 3,000 ft. Inside the venue, VidOvation’s IPTV solutions give fans complete access to the action around the concourse.