Game Creek Video will use its three-unit Encore mobile production facility — interconnected by Evertz Microsystem’s large scale IP routing system — for FOX Sports domestic broadcast of the 2017 Super Bowl game.
Evertz is providing both video and audio routing technology for Game Creek’s Encore, using a massive EXE video system with 46 terabytes of switching capacity and an EMR audio router that can handle 768 x 768 AES digital audio feeds.
Evertz IP routing technology made its debut in 2015 with Game Creek’s Encore unit at USGA golf events and has been updated along the way as the truck has gained experience with other sporting broadcasts.
Mo Goyal, Evertz director of product marketing.
“The name of our video router is EXE, which is our high capacity switch fabric,” said Mo Goyal, Evertz director of product marketing. “SDVN, which means software defined video networking, is the name for moving video over an IP infrastructure.”
Using Evertz’s Magnum unified control system as the SDVN orchestration and control technology, the EXE, in a 40-rack unit frame, provides FOX Sports with more than 6900 channels of inputs and outputs.
The router has the capability to handle 850 simultaneous router feeds, 10,759 source virtual ports, 10,142 destination virtual ports, 13 transmission paths and 1,558 images in Encore alone. A total of 370 HD-SDI feeds in total can leave the Encore production facility at one time.
Encore will also use Evertz’s 3067VIP-10G multi-viewer system running in excess of 140 video displays. The format-agnostic infrastructure will allow FOX Sports to support 3G, UHD, 4K and 8K resolutions.
For audio, Evertz’s EMR multi-format modular router provides a high density solution that can handle a virtually unlimited number of microphones. The EMR provides a unified platform for routing digital audio, analog audio, MADI audio, A-LINK audio, data and time code.
The EMR uses a packet routing core that allows for highly dense applications and also provides the flexibility for expansion as demands grow, which they always do at Super Bowls.
A single six rack unit frame can accommodate 288 x 288 AES, 288 data ports, 288 x 288 time code signals or a mix of everything in between. Expansion beyond this is accomplished by adding another frame. With a pair of six rack frames, the EMR can accommodate 576 x 576 AES signals with full redundancy. The audio is fed into Calrec Apollo, Artemis and Summa audio consoles.
Evertz routing gear is very flexible and can be adapted event by event up to the last minute as requirements change. By implementing an independent data path, the EXE video router supports 10GB/s, 60GB/s, 100GB/s and 120GB/s interface speeds that can carry uncompressed 3G/HD/SD using SMPTE-2022-6 and compressed video (using JPEG-2000, H.264 or MPEG-2).
In addition, the EXE supports multiple timing planes which provides independent SMPTE compliant switching for different digital video signal formats. It uses SDI routing architecture for redundancy and supports manual or automatic re-routing of individual signals with quality verification prior to switching to the redundant path.
The EXE can support uncompressed (3G/HD/SD) and compressed video signals using JPEG-2000, H.264 or MPEG-2 codecs. In a 40 rack unit system, the EXE is capable of supporting 13,800 uncompressed HD/SD signals over 10 million TS streams using MPEG-2.
The EXE’s internal frame controllers provide connectivity to any number of remote control panels and third party control devices such as automation systems via Ethernet ports. Using Magnum, the EXE makes system installations with advanced tie-lines, automated pathfinding and advanced control surfaces simple to implement and manage.
Evertz’s EMR audio router allows any mix of formats within a frame. The inputs and outputs are scalable in blocks of 96 or 48 depending on the format. A system consists of the input stage, the crosspoint and the output stage.
Each input and output device is connected to the crosspoint through a proprietary TDM connection. It is the use of this connection that provides the flexibility for the system to scale and evolve with changing needs.
When combined with Magnum, the EMR can be controlled using a wide range of control panels and interfaces. The audio router also provides an SNMP interface to control various configuration options.
Each input and output card in the EMR contains multiple TDM interfaces that allow connections to multiple crosspoints. The TDM inputs can be setup to automatically failover if the primary connection fails. The redundancy structure of the EMR minimizes the chances of system failure.
The EMR can be scaled well beyond a single frame. A single crosspoint module can support up to 16 input modules and 16 output modules, allowing a system to scale to 1536 x 1536 AES. For larger requirements, multiple crosspoint modules can be combined to scale further. There really is no limit to the range of the EMR system.
The Evertz system contains advanced processing features above and beyond basic audio routing. The core allows functions such as gain, phase inversion, muting and audio delay to be applied to each mono channel independently.
Each mono channel also has an independent four-by-one mixer that enables the operator to produce mono-mix or 5.1 down-mixing of surround channels. The input modules also provide sample rate conversion capabilities to realign incoming signals to the sample rate of the applied reference.
Outside of minor software upgrades to enhance system stability, Goyal said little has changed this year in the Evertz routing systems being used by Game Creek. The other major mobile unit provider at the Super Bowl, NEP, also uses Evertz routers.
“Evertz has a very strong presence in mobile units, especially in core routing and multiviewing,” Goyal said. “Game Creek and NEP both use our gear, as well as many other mobile unit providers.”
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