Advanced Search. AV over IP promises to take full advantage of the convergence of AV and IT, with the ability to distribute video, audio and control signals over traditional network infrastructure.
Here are the features and limitations to consider when designing AV over IP-based systems. If you've been paying attention to the audiovisual industry for the past couple of years, you've certainly noticed the AV over IP trend.
While it may not yet be widespread in higher ed classrooms, it's definitely going to play a big part in the future of AV system design. There are lots of details to pay attention to when designing AV over IP-based systems, but I'll try to give you a big-picture view of the technology.
These days, when dealing with high-definition resolutions and frame rates, AV system designers typically look to transport video, audio and control signals throughout their classrooms using twisted pair extenders. These are point-to-point systems with transmitters at source devices and receivers at destination devices.
Even when you place a switcher between those source and destination devices, you're essentially adding more mid-stream transmitters and receivers into your point-to-point environment.
We see larger and larger matrix switchers coming from the manufacturers, but our switching design is still limited to the number of inputs and outputs on those switcher frames. Everyone knows the feeling of needing to add one more device to your AV system, but the switcher doesn't have any available inputs.
While limited in some respects, these point-to-point systems offer a bandwidth-controlled environment, high resolutions and frame rates, and very low latency.
We're all used to video and audio streaming over the network, but AV over IP technology is taking streaming to a different level. Instead of placing HDBaseT transmitters and receivers at all the devices in the room, the AV over IP model calls for an encoder at each source device and a decoder at each destination device.
The encoders and decoders are all connected to standard Ethernet switches.
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As a result, we're no longer limited to a finite number of inputs and outputs, and theoretically we can connect as many encoders and decoders as our network design allows — with the ability to scale up at lower costs. Based on the network configuration, we're also no longer limited to AV signals being confined within the room.
The decoders can be controlled to display any stream from any of the encoders. AV and IT professionals pay attention to bandwidth restrictions, and the AV over IP trend is certainly in the thick of the bandwidth discussion.
While it might sound like an easy solution, you can't just start throwing these high-end AV encoders and decoders on your network and expect flawless results. When comparing AV over IP technologies, pay attention to bandwidth requirements and explore the possibility that you'll need to establish a separate, dedicated AV network to keep your network services department happy.
As you start to investigate the various AV over IP technology that's being offered, there are quite a few features and limitations that you need to pay attention to. Different manufacturers have different resolution, frame rate and color compression capabilities. Even if you're not yet heavy into 4K-resolution sources and display devices in your classrooms, you should certainly be planning the infrastructure to handle it in the future.
Achieving color sampling is the goal, but plenty of manufacturers are using compression to save on bandwidth. View More Webcasts. View More Whitepapers.
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