The Broadcast Knowledge exists to help individuals up-skill whatever your starting point. Videos like this are far too rare giving an introduction to a large number of topics. For those starting out or who need to revise a topic, this really hits the mark particularly as there are many new topics.
John Mailhot takes the lead on SMPTE 2110 explaining that it’s built on separate media (essence) flows. He covers how synchronisation is maintained and also gives an overview of the many parts of the SMPTE ST 2110 suite. He talks in more detail about the audio and metadata parts of the standard suite.
Eric Gsell discusses digital archiving and the considerations which come with deciding what formats to use. He explains colour space, the CIE model and the colour spaces we use such as 709, 2100 and P3 before turning to file formats. With the advent of HDR video and displays which can show bright video, Eric takes some time to explain why this could represent a problem for visual health as we don’t fully understand how the displays and the eye interact with this type of material. He finishes off by explaining the different ways of measuring the light output of displays and their standardisation.
Yvonne Thomas talks about the cloud starting by explaining the different between platform as a service (PaaS), infrastructure as a service (IaaS) and similar cloud terms. As cloud migrations are forecast to grow significantly, Yvonne looks at the drivers behind this and the benefits that it can bring when used in the right way. Using the cloud, Yvonne shows, can be an opportunity for improving workflows and adding more feedback and iterative refinement into your products and infrastructure.
Looking at video deployments in the cloud, Yvonne introduces video codecs AV1 and VVC both, in their own way, successors to HEVC/h.265 as well as the two transport protocols SRT and RIST which exist to reliably send video with low latency over lossy networks such as the internet. To learn more about these protocols, check out this popular talk on RIST by Merrick Ackermans and this SRT Overview.
Rounding off the primer is Linda Gedemer from Source Sound VR who introduces immersive audio, measuring sound output (SPL) from speakers and looking at the interesting problem of forward speakers in cinemas. The have long been behind the screen which has meant the screens have to be perforated to let the sound through which interferes with the sound itself. Now that cinema screens are changing to be solid screens, not completely dissimilar to large outdoor video displays, the speakers are having to move but now with them out of the line of sight, how can we keep the sound in the right place for the audience?
This video is a great summary of many of the key challenges in the industry and works well for beginners and those who just need to keep up.
French broadcast company M6 Group has recently moved to an all-IP workflow, employing the SMPTE ST 2110 suite of standards for professional media delivery over IP networks. The two main playout channels and MCR have been already upgraded and the next few channels will be transitioned to the new core soon.
The M6 system comprises equipment from five different vendors (Evertz, Tektronix, Harmonic, Ross and TSL), all managed and controlled using the AMWA NMOS IS-04 and IS-05 specifications. Such interoperability is an inherent feature of SMPTE ST 2110 suite of standards allowing customers to focus on the operational workflows and flexibility that IP brings them. Centralised management and configuration of the system is provided through web interfaces which also allows for easy and automated addition of a new equipment.
Thanks to Software Defined Orchestration and intuitive touch screen interfaces information such as source paths, link bandwidth / status, and device details can be quickly accessed via a web GUI. As the system is based on IP network, it is possible to come in and out of fabric numerous times without the same costs implications that you would have in the SDI world. Every point of the signal chain can be easily visualised which enables broadcast engineers to maintain and configure the system with ease.
The Networked Media Open Specifications (NMOS) have been developed to provide a control and management layer along side the SMPTE ST 2110 transport layer. The idea behind NMOS was to deliver an open specification to provide the software layers that abstract a lot of complexities of ST 2110 and make it easy to interface with any control system.
The NMOS family of specifications began with projects for Discovery & Registration, Device Connection Management and Network Control, but has grown to include many other important subjects such as Event & Tally, Audio Channel Mapping and Interoperable Security.
In this video, Jed Deame discusses the latest advancements including IS-08, IS-09, BCP-002, BCP-003 and IS-10. These additions allows NMOS to surpass the level of control provided in SDI while also adding a layer of security.
The following Interface Specifications and Best Current Practices are presented:
IS-04 (Registration and Discovery) – new features: support for GPI over Ethernet (IS-07) and authorisation signalling for security layers BCP-003-02
IS-05 (Connection Management) – new features: MQ Telemetry Transport and WebSocket Transport, support for supplementary externally defined parameters
Building security into your infrastructure is more and more important for broadcasters with many now taking very seriously a topic which, only 6 years ago, was only just being discussed. Attacks on broadcasters like TV5 Monde have brought into focus that it’s not just copmanies who have high value rights who are ripe for breach – attacking a broadcaster is a high impact way of getting your message accross.
We have seen how the internet, which was built on very open and trusting protocols, has struggled in recent times to keep abuse to a minimum and to implement security to keep data safe and to keep out unauthorised persons.
And so AMWA is looking at its recent specifcations to ensure there is a clear and interoperable way of implementing security. The benefit of IP should be that that as an industry we can benefit from the work of other industries before us and here, having based these specifications on HTTP interfaces, we can do exactly that. Just like sites on the internet can implemnt HTTPS, we, too use the same mechanism of security certificates and TLS (colloquially known as SSL) encryption to ensure that not only is our data encrypted but also that no one can impersonate anyone else on the network.
Simon Rankine from BBC R&D explains the work he has been part of in defining this secure interface which not only protects from mal-intentioned actors, but also offers some protection from accidental mistakes by staff.
Simon gives a good intorduction to not only how this is a benefit but also how the underlying mechanisms work which are just as applicable to the NMOS APIs as they are to general websites.