IP – based Systems and Technologies for Television Production
The next generation of IP production systems needs well designed standards and specification in order to guarantee interoperability among products and solutions from different manufacturers. Various organizations are at work to define the architecture for future IP Production infrastructure, establish open standards and organize interoperability tests:
- European Broadcasting Union (EBU)
- Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers (SMPTE)
- Video Services Forum (VSF)
- Advanced Media Workflow Association (AMWA)
- Alliance for IP Media Solutions (AIMS)
- Joint Task Force on Networked Media (JT-NM)
The following roadmap from JT-NM shows:
- which standards and specification enable the JT-NM Reference Architecture
- how the range of underlying technologies is expected to evolve
- when it is expected that those standards and specifications be widely available to build interoperable multi-vendor systems
SMPTE ST-2110 standard (currently being drafted) specifies the transport and synchronization of video, audio and ancillary data streams over IP network. There are currently no commercial solutions supporting it (they are expected within 2017), but it is reasonable to assume that future platforms will converge in an interoperable way to this new standard
Similarly AMWA NMOS will be the standard for automated resource management, including network control, device discovery, registration and connection management.
Alongside the evolving standards described in the roadmap, complete systems based on proprietary technology are available for immediate deployment. For example:
- Sony IP Live (NMI based)
- ASPEN (Adaptive Sample Picture ENcapsulation)
Open format from Evertz and other manufacturers, submitted to SMPTE for publication as a Registered Disclosure Document (RDD 37); makes use of widely deployed MPEG-2 Transport Stream encapsulation
Audio over IP solutions include:
an open standard, developed by the Audio Engineering Society, designed to allow interoperability between various IP-based audio networking systems
an open technology based on existing standards, fully AES67 compliant, that can operate on existing network infrastructures
- Dante (Digital Audio Network Through Ethernet)
a popular audio over IP solution developed by Audinate and licensed to more than 350 companies
A description of CRIT projects regarding products, systems and technologies for IP Production can be found in the following section.
For several years, alongside the traditional and professional interfaces dedicated to digital audio (such as AES/EBU, ADAT, MADI), numerous remote control solutions have been developed based on shared or dedicated use of network infrastructures.
These solutions, mainly based on proprietary technologies, are remains “islands” that tend to limit the interoperability between equipments and systems, leaving the role of “bridge” to the single devices or to the tradtional interfaces.
In this context, the standardization efforts occurred in AES (with AES67 and AES70 standards) and the job that is addressing normative entity the solutions for the Video Over IP transport are the Networked Audio world changing elements.
Supporting Media Workflows on Advanced Cloud Object Store Platforms
RAI CRIT is supporting research to extend cloud object store technologies to address emerging media industry requirements, such as scalability, efficiency and adaptability of production and archiving workflows.
Integration of Semantic Networks in Multimedia Production and Archiving
The advent of RDF (Resource Description Framework) technology in the first half of the 2000’s, followed by RDF Schema and OWL (Web Ontology Language), represented a quantum leap in the possibility of concretely using semantic networks in the most varied applications. In the field of multimedia applications, among which we can include television production and archiving in general, they are by now an indispensable ingredient for semantic enriching and contextualisation of content for a very wide range of purposes (from automatic documentation to content recommendations systems). This project aims at exploring in detail these possibilities by defining and implementing prototypical content semantic enrichment systems exploiting existing Knowledge Base and possibly extending/creating new domain ontologies.
Testing a Sony IP Live production chain
A Sony UHD production chain consisting of cameras, video mixers, video signal processors and control panels is currently under construction at CRIT.
Devices interconnect either with legacy interfaces (4 x 3G-SDI) on coaxial cables, or using IP networks and Networked Media Interface (NMI) protocols, as defined by Sony IP Live platform.
Tests will be conducted in collaboration with RAI Production and ICT Divisions, providing, after a first phase of laboratory testing at CRIT, interconnection of two corporate sites through the IP Rai network.
Computerization of Production
We need to move from a television production model based on vertical supply chains to a horizontal integration. From an organizational and technological structure based on separate joints and specialized on a particular distribution channel, to an integrated model capable of producing and distributing content on heterogeneous channels.