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Category Archives: Editorial Coverage
Systems Enable Reliable, Low-Latency, Synchronous Video and Audio Transmission on Multicamera and Multilocation Live Police Docuseries
IRVINE, Calif. — March 27, 2017 — VidOvation today announced that Big Fish Entertainment, the creator and production company behind groundbreaking A&E docuseries “Live PD,” is using VidOvation’s AVIWEST DMNG PRO180 bonded cellular systems on the multicamera, multilocation production for reliable, synchronous, and low-latency transmission of broadcast-quality video and audio.
“‘Live PD’ is the first show of its kind to capture and stream live video of police officers on patrol and, to our knowledge, the first primetime entertainment television program to push the capabilities of bonded cellular technology well beyond that of a typical stationary news report. Every episode represents a phenomenal technical achievement, the perfect blend of technology and editorial content to deliver a transparency in police work never seen before on television,” said Dan Cesareo, founder and president of Big Fish Entertainment. “AVIWEST was the only bonded cellular solution we tested that could help us accomplish our creative goals for the show. The VidOvation-AVIWEST team really went the extra mile to help meet our technical requirements and make ‘Live PD’ a resounding success.”
Each “Live PD” episode offers viewers a live, unfiltered look inside some of America’s busiest police departments and the communities they patrol. One of the biggest production hurdles was capturing high-quality live HD video from multiple cameras and streaming it to air in real time. On a typical Friday night, “Live PD” covers officers on patrol in six cities, with as many as 40 live video feeds coming into a New York-based control room at A&E headquarters. With such a large quantity of feeds, traditional satellite or microwave links would not only be cost-prohibitive, but would not provide the necessary mobility and flexibility. The solution was bonded cellular technology, which bonds any available combination of network interfaces including local cellular and Wi-Fi networks, Ethernet, and satellite for high-quality and reliable video transmission links.
The “Live PD” crew uses 41 AVIWEST DMNG PRO180-RA bonded cellular transmitters, including one for each of two HD cameras in every patrol car and two additional camera operators as well as an overhead drone to cover the action outside the vehicle. Additionally, the team has installed four AVIWEST QUAD external antenna units to each patrol car for even faster network acquisition and greater signal resilience. Throughout the three-hour show, the DMNG PROs feed up to four video channels and eight audio channels of live, high-quality video back to the control room in New York from every patrol car in all six cities. In the control room, an AVIWEST DMNG StreamHub receiver, decoder, and distribution platform receives the live video feeds and delivers them to air for the live broadcast.
“We tested several bonded cellular systems, but none of them could handle the multicamera and multilocation format of the show — except one,” said Larry Barbatsoulis, the show’s technical supervisor. “The AVIWEST DMNG system proved its ability to transmit video and audio from up to five cameras in close proximity and with perfect lip sync and video synchronization between all cameras.”
# # #
About Big Fish Entertainment
Big Fish Entertainment is a full service production company that creates multi-platform, visually driven content that compels and entertains audiences with the “unexpected.” Founded in 2006 by President Dan Cesareo, Big Fish has since produced hundreds of hours of award-winning and top-rated programming in the unscripted reality, lifestyle and documentary space. Current Big Fish series include groundbreaking docu-series Live PD for A&E, offering viewers unfiltered live access inside policing in America; mega-hit franchise Black Ink Crew with editions in New York and Chicago for VH1; Tattoo Girls for TLC and recent premiere Hustle & Soul for WE tv. With other breakthrough credits including Bomb Patrol: Afghanistan and the Gates Foundation Reality PD public schools project, Big Fish captures and relates extraordinary worlds, characters and stories for such networks as Discovery, VH1, A&E, TLC, MTV, WE tv, E!, National Geographic, Oxygen, Planet Green, Travel Channel, Spike, Smithsonian Channel and G4. For more information, visit bigfishusa.com.
VidOvation — Moving Video Forward — is a leading manufacturer of video, audio, and data communications systems for the broadcast television and sports, corporate AV, and government markets, offering 50 years of combined experience. Encompassing wireless video, bonded cellular, video streaming, video networking, IPTV, and fiber optic communications systems, VidOvation solutions improve video transmissions by removing the frustrations of dropouts, latency, interference, noise, and security issues. VidOvation excels in helping its clients integrate custom solutions into existing infrastructure, with the ability to meet almost any application or budget. The company applies proven expertise on the complete project lifecycle — from project consulting and management, to engineering and design, to warranty and support. Learn more at vidovation.com or call +1 949-777-5435.
All trademarks appearing in this document are property of their respective owners.
Photo Credit: Scott Gries / A&E Network
Wall Street Communications
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Tel: +1 949-777-5435
VidOvation Provides AVIWEST Bonded Cellular for First Live Reality Cop Show
NEW YORK—Premiering last October on A&E, “Live PD” offers viewers a live, unfettered and unfiltered look inside America’s busiest police departments and the communities they patrol. “Live PD” is the first show of its kind to capture and stream live video of police officers on patrol, using bonded cellular technology with dash cams as well as fixed-rig and handheld cameras. As the creators and the production company behind “Live PD,” we at Big Fish Entertainment faced challenges in developing the show. One of the biggest hurdles—the whole premise of “Live PD”—was the ability to capture high-quality live HD video from multiple cameras and stream it in real time to air.
CAPTURING MULTIPLE LOCATIONS
On a typical episode, “Live PD” covers officers in six cities, with as many 40 live video feeds coming into a New York-based control room at A&E headquarters. With this large quantity of feeds, traditional satellite or microwave links were not only cost-prohibitive, but did not give us the mobility and flexibility needed to execute the show’s vision.
Link Distance – Wireless Video Selection Criteria
The total distance that can be covered between endpoints in a wireless link is affected by a combination of factors including frequency, antenna geometry, interference, and obstructions. These factors make precise distance calculations extremely dependent on local environments. However, some general rules can be defined to help guide technology selection.
Rule 1) Lower frequency bands support greater transmission distances, and are less sensitive to signal path obstructions. But low frequency bands are more likely to be restricted by the FCC (or other national authorities) to narrow channel bandwidths and hence limited bit rates.
Rule 2) More complex modulation schemes (such as 16QAM as compared to QPSK) that deliver more bits in a given channel bandwidth require greater signal to noise ratios to deliver an acceptable error rate. Other things being equal, shorter usable link distance limits will apply for more complex modulation.
Rule 3) Narrow-beam antennas produce higher gains than wide-beam ones, thereby permitting longer link distances to be used. Omnidirectional antennas having much shorter ranges than either panel or parabolic antennas.
Rule 4) Greater levels of interfering signals will reduce usable link distances due to a reduction in signal to noise ratio. Interference can come from many sources, including other equipment occupying the same frequencies nearby and consumer devices such as microwave ovens that emit RF energy. In general, heavily populated areas have much more ambient interference than rural environments.
Rule 5) Path obstructions, including buildings, power lines and trees or other vegetation will attenuate wireless signals and reduce usable range. High frequency signals tend to suffer greater attenuation than low frequency signals for a given obstacle. Extremely high frequency signals may only work if there is a clear line of sight from the transmitter to the receiver.
SDI Over Ethernet
Serial digital interface, more commonly referred to as SDI, is a type of interface that is used to transmit digital-grade video images. It was originally and most prevalently used by the movie and television industry due to its broadcast-quality image capabilities. However, as the trend toward streaming video and video downloads continues to build steam, there is an increasing demand for businesses and consumers alike to use SDI over Ethernet. While this technology was not available years ago, it is now available. More than that, it is becoming increasingly more common and more affordable to use, and this means that it may now be able to be used by you in your productions. However, there is a need to find the right solutions to use when implementing this technology in your office or other environment. See the Introductory Guide to IPTV and Video Networking.
Different Capabilities and Features to Look For
The capabilities of SDI over Ethernet vary from one provider to another, and you may consider researching the options thoroughly before you decide which option to use for your needs. For example, one option streams data in a bi-directional manner, and it works with SD, SDI, ASI and even HD technology. The speed of the service also can vary, and some capabilities are more suitable for shorter distance transport rather than longer distance transport.
Superior Digital Encoders
In addition to having the network in place to support SDI over Ethernet, there is also a need to invest in digital encoders. There are several encoders available for you to purchase, but superior encoders have dual input capabilities to support two simulcast channels at the same time. They may have lower cost viewer options, high resolution functions and other enhanced features. While there are multiple options available, the quality and cost of the technology is imperative. Through VidOvation, you can most easily find the highest quality encoders to use with SDI over ethernet at the best value available.
VidOvation is a Video Communications Company
Larry Jordan: Jim Jachetta is the Founder and President of VidOvation. For over 20 years, Jim’s been designing, integrating and delivering video, fiber optic and data communications systems and recently they’ve expanded into wireless video with some new technology being used by the NHL. Hello, Jim, welcome.
Jim Jachetta: Hi, thanks for having me. Pleasure to be here.
Larry Jordan: We are delighted to have you with us and let’s start with a really easy question. First, tell us about what VidOvation is.
Jim Jachetta: VidOvation is a video communications company. We manufacture solutions for wireless, solutions for fiber optic transmission, for webcasting, we make encoders to stream video over your corporate network or through the internet, but in a nutshell we help our clients move video from Point A to Point B and our tagline is ‘Moving video forward’, so we’re staying up to date with the latest technologies such as what we did for the National Hockey League, using 60 gigahertz transmission for uncompressed wireless video.
Larry Jordan: Let’s just take a second. We understand that you guys are in the business of moving video, but you’re one of the founders of the company. Why did you decide to start the company? What made that so intriguing to you?
Jim Jachetta: Well, I guess I have my dad to blame for that. My dad had an entrepreneurial spirit. My dad was an engineer at ABC, CBS and his longest and final stint was at NBC, so he worked at 30 Rock for about 12 years before starting a company called MultiDyne and, as kids, my brother and I, we always worked for our dad so junior high we helped stuff circuit boards and build a lot of his audio visual equipment, so it’s in our DNA and my dad was a great problem solver and my brother and I have inherited that work ethic of doing the never been done before and solving our clients’ problems or helping with their business workflow.