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Channel 5 Simplifies Workflows with Single-Point Infrastructure

News: Production

Channel 5 Simplifies Workflows with Single-Point Infrastructure

Channel 5, based in St. Petersburg, Russia, has rationalised its core technology by updating to a Platinum IP3 router from Imagine Communications for its MCR and playout. The design of the Platinum IP3 incorporates much of the video and audio infrastructure, eliminating a large number of outboard devices from multiple vendors, simplifying cabling and reducing power consumption, as well as making workflows more coherent and transparent.

Channel 5 was already using an Imagine Platinum router, but continually increasing operational demands called for more inputs and outputs. Channel 5 took the opportunity to rationalise its infrastructure by bringing much more functionality into the new, expanded router, eliminating the need for external third-party devices. 

“We knew that the newest models of Platinum router, like the IP3, can host a huge amount of functionality within the frame, making system architecture much more logical,” said Sergei Volhin, technical director of Channel 5. “It meant we could do away with a lot of other equipment, making the installation neater and easier to understand. The new Platinum IP3 reduces the cost and complexity, maximises on-air security, and gives us the capability to quickly set up workflows and expand the I/O as our needs develop.”

The new 28RU Platinum IP3 router was specified, configured and installed by Imagine’s channel partner, MediaProject. The IP3 is highly scalable, and in its initial implementation, it provides for 576 x 1024 video I/O in SD and HD, with fully redundant routing and both copper and fibre interfaces. The router also supports 64 TDM audio slots, each carrying up to 128 audio channels.

As well as the highly resilient switching, the Platinum IP3 also offers video and audio processing which in other systems would require large numbers of third-party devices — each consuming power, cooling and rack space. At Channel 5, all the multiviewer displays in the playout and master control area are driven by router-integrated Platinum SX Pro multiviewer cards — enabling a real saving in outboard processors and ensuring faster and more secure operation. The router also integrates audio embedding and de-embedding with full level control and channel shuffling and extensive video processing.

“Every broadcaster wants a core infrastructure that is going to be absolutely secure and resilient, but is also compact, convenient and clear,” said Mathias Eckert, SVP & GM EMEA/APAC, Playout & Networking, at Imagine Communications. “The fundamental design of the Platinum IP3 router allows us to configure very complex signal management, processing and monitoring in the same device, so a single command can fire multiple actions without the need to set each parameter. That makes for very secure operations, even in complex workflows.

“The result is that — as Channel 5 identified — the Platinum IP3 is a complete solution, and one which reduces cost while enhancing resilience,” Eckert added. “And, when the time comes, it can be expanded to encompass IP switching alongside SDI and digital audio, providing long-term security.”

The router project was installed and commissioned by MediaProject during summer 2019. (11/19)

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