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Production and studio networks

Broadcasters and media companies are preparing for the next big step: full IP networking, including for live production. Critical real-time applications, proprietary approaches, missing components in standardization and various timing concepts are the challenges along the way. IRT participates in the standardization, organizes tests and offers consultation to broadcasters and media companies to further improve compatibility and enable the launch and integration.



IP in the studio

With the introduction of IP-based transmission in studio and production environments, the task is to master not only the technical challenges but also the organisational ones. With AES67, SMPTE 2022, TR-03/-04 and AVB/TSN, various technologies are in the starting gate. The issue of timing and synchronization in networks is virulent at all media technology manufacturers. In the future, it will operate on the same network infrastructure as the media streams. The Blackburst will be replaced by the Precision Time Protocol (IEEE 1588 v2). Here, however, it needs to be noted that there is no generally valid PTP for everything, but different profiles exist. IRT accompanies the development and, as a neutral partner, organises interoperability tests and evaluates the new systems with regard to all broadcast-relevant aspects.

As a technical service provider, IRT offers consultation and support, from concept and risk assessment to technical recommendations and the preparation and implementation of proof-of-concepts and interoperability tests. 

Measurements and interoperability

Unfortunately, most standardization committees and industrial consortiums first focused on the mapping of data in IP, transport, timing and management. This is in part the reason for the current dilemma: while the original “battle of the technologies” was aimed at the duel between IP (SMPTE 2022-x and AES67) and Ethernet (AVB, TSN), after the “victory” of IP it first looked as though SMPTE 2022 would be the solution for IP in studios and production as well. SMPTE 2022 is a contribution standard and was not conceived for use in the studio, etc. This leads to the sudden emergence of new standards and quasi-standards from the various committees and industrial consortiums, which again leads to general confusion among users and does not necessarily work in favour of the interoperability of the related equipment.

Standardization may be progressing, but most of the components currently being developed are pieces of a puzzle. Some components are still lacking such things as security, overall management, network integration, device discovery (in part), LAN-WAN-LAN coupling… A big overall concept still needs to be created. One consequence is that the commercial availability of entire end-to-end solutions for an all-IP media company is still lagging behind expectations.

IRT is active in the relevant standardisation committees with the goal to improve interoperability and, in addition, offers qualified measurement services:

They include proof of concepts, pilot tests, interoperability tests and complete network tests as well as release measurements of new networks in studio and production.

Your contacts

Markus Berg
Head of Department
Tel. +49 (0)89 32399-279