IBC 2019: Welcome 2wcom’s 4audio series broadcasting expectation

The company says certain quality requirements are increasing. Compatibility, audio quality, flexibility, simplicity and transmission robustness are the current top five buzzwords and the demand on software based or virtualized solutions is growing. Broadcasters need solutions that support studio-to-studio, studio-to-transmitter links and cross-media tasks. The new Linux based, modular and scalable technological concept offer a wide range of useful features and support broadcasters taking the challenge to harmonize old and new technologies and navigate to the next generation of audio.

4audio IP solutions offer outstanding interoperability

2wom 4audio IP Sol

2wcoms says its recently launched Linux based 4audio IP series eases day-to-day work of network operators and comprises products like IP-4c four-channel codec, IP-8e eight-channel IP / MPEG encoder and MoIN Multimedia over IP network server. Further variants will be coming soon. Each device is available as hardware or virtualized software. Its new and well thought out technological concept assures outstanding flexibility in application by supporting studio to studio and studio to transmitter links as well as broadcasters increasing cross-media tasks.

High-level compatibility is especially of importance in mixed networks and expanded infrastructures. For this purpose, all major protocols for internet interoperability like Ravenna, Livewire+, Dante or SRT are supported. Harmonization of data exchange between the protocols is done by standards like EBU N/ACIP Tech 3326, AES67, SMPTE ST 2110, SMPTE 2022-7, NMOS and Ember+. To easily exchange data in mixed networks the solutions offer protocol transforming e.g. from Livewire+ to Ravenna when transmitting from a studio site to the headend.

Eying the upcoming cross-media tasks, customers benefit from an integrated transcoding feature, which allows the provision of all main codec algorithms, according to requirements. For high quality and low latency of real time applications, this can mean PCM to Opus. For economical needs, like dealing with low bandwidth or uploading files to a station website transcoding to, for example, AAC profiles (even AAC xHE), Enhanced aptX or Ogg Vorbis is possible.

The flexible management of recorded audio content enables to combine individual audio streams into multichannel streams. Facing e.g. events, this can include audio from the stage, sideline or grandstand, or even speaker comments. In local studios, the decoder solutions offer audio/data exchange capabilities for regionalization of the received main stream. To ensure the precisely synchronized routing of different streams between linked networks and a good latency management, Moin, IP-4c and IP-8e support the Precision Time Protocol (PTPv2).

In addition, all solutions assist the teams on-site in daily operation. In case an event requires further temporary channels, a corresponding channel activation scalability is possible. Pre-configuration of hardware and software for operation, management and control is provided via an easy-to-use web interface and remotely via SNMP, Ember+ or JSON. A SIP phonebook simplifies intercommunication in networks by enabling to establish connection and to negotiate codec algorithms as well as protocols. SIP entries and status information accessible via a web interface and at the hardware grant flexibility to reporters in the field if WLAN is not available. Supporting DHCP increases the independence of production teams by permitting the automatic allocation of IP addresses, helping to avoid the need to request an IP address from the Help Desk.

A multi-layer concept ensures transmission robustness. Hardware devices are equipped with up to two in- or external power supplies. Protection against IP packet loss offers Pro-MPEG FEC or Reliable User Datagram Protocol, which is more effective and more economical in means of bandwidth. Further redundancy is achievable by transmitting two streams or different audio qualities in parallel. In case of interruption of the main stream, IP packet losses can be recovered by picking them from the second stream or the respective receivers switch seamless to the next audio quality.

New 4audio DAB-4c is a high-density and hybrid solution

2wcom DAB

Thinking of DAB+ it is obvious broadcasters have to deal with some special challenges. For example, operating DAB in expanded networks including EDI and ETI multiplexers as sources, operating legacy ETI and EDI transmitters in parallel or operating DAB in already existing infrastructures originally not intended for DAB - e.g. DVB-S/S2 or ASI. 2wcom says its new DAB-4c converter provides a well thought out concept and several features to navigate through the time of switchover until a new homogenous system is installed. The device allows tor receive data signals from legacy ETI and EDI multiplexers at the same time and to convert the signals respectively to the EDI/ETI transmitters in the field. As a high-density solution the device offers four ETI outputs and four ETI bidirectional interfaces (in/out) to increase the number of ETI outputs if e.g. ETI mirroring is needed. Moreover, it is equipped with two Ethernet data interfaces in and out. In addition, an optional satellite tuner enables integration into cost-efficient, already existing satellite distribution systems to optimize coverage and distribute programs to regions that are still lacking broadband IP. For synchronization of all sites, the DAB-4c can use PTPv2 or an external 10 MHz signal and in case of failure, an internal recovery from the EDI stream by jitter removal assures an ongoing synchronized transmission. Regarding transmission robustness, the device provides the possibility of seamless switching between two EDI or ETI sources (PFT Dual Streaming).

To ensure high compatibility the solution accords to specifications such as ETSI EN 300 40, ETSI TS 102 563, EN 300 799 or ETSI TS 102 693 and supports Uni- / Multicast (IGMPv2/v3) as well as EDI, UDP, IGMP, ICMP, DHCP, HTTPS, FTPS, NTP and PTPv2. The DAB-4c is fully configurable via web interface or remotely via SNMP. In addition, the device offers real time statistics and monitoring of the main DAB+ parameters and on-air monitoring at transmitter sites is possible by an optional DAB tuner.

4audio MPX is 2wcoms most versatile FM, RDS and MPX solution

2wcom 4audio MPX

2wcoms full featured FM/RDS and analog/digital MPX over IP product line is undergoing a monumental change. All existing established products like C02 RDS encoder, S02 stereo generator or the analog/digital MPX over IP codecs FMC01 will be replaced by the new state-of-the-art 4audio MPX product series. Due to a new software oriented and Linux based scalable concept it is possible for technicians and decision makers to configure devices fitting to the respective requirements in just one 19’’ 1HU rack unit, saving costs and rack space.

What means e.g. RDS encoder, stereo generator and an analog/digital MPX over IP codec are combinable in one device generating the MPX signal and encode or decode it 100% loss less for further distribution. Alternatively, operators can simply select the modules depending on their needs. At transmitter sites, it is possible to add local RDS data to the MPX signal already assembled at broadcaster’s main studio. Furthermore, optional available SAT receiver and FM tuner modules enable to receive the MPX signal via SAT if it is more economical compared to IP, to monitor audio and RDS signals or to rebroadcast the received programs. Consequently, it is also possible to establish source redundancy by forwarding the station program via IP and SAT in parallel and switch to the best source available.

2wcom’S 4audio MPX products provide a variety of sophisticated new features simply activated by software. The device is equipped with inputs for analog/digital MPX, analog audio, AES/EBU and Audio over IP. As a result, the stereo generator now also supports all common standards and protocols for Audio over IP streaming, control and status.

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