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Vortex Enhances Product Line Ahead Of IBC

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IBC concentrates the mind – and effort; there is nothing quite like a deadline to get things finished and this year is no exception.

Apart from new products on show for the first time, Vortex is introducing enhancements and add-ons to established industry-standard ranges including its Clocks and Timers, Video and Audio IP Codecs, Telephone Interfaces and Fibre-Optic and Structured Cable Interface products. There are also special packages available with added-value and discounted pricing.

The TimeLord family of Master Clocks has been completely re-designed and re-engineered and is now modular in construction allowing the installation of dual input reference interfaces and multiple time signal data outputs. These include dual Ethernet connectivity to provide NTP network time in all the usual formats, EBU, IRIG, RS-232/422/485 serial time data and an enhanced v-482 code which drives digital displays. Also introduced is the low-cost TimeLord-µNet NTP Time Server with GPS antenna to provide accurate time for computer networks and NTP-locked displays. And on that subject, the entire V-400 Series of digital clocks and displays has also undergone an engineering refresh with PoE Power-over-Ethernet now available for most time displays which avoids the need for mains power and infra-red remote control. As an alternative, the FLX Virtual Clock System uses low-cost HDMI screens to display accurate time and timer information using an NTP Network / HDMI Interface attached to the back of the screen. For timing applications – the UK House of Commons debates are timed using FLX – a tablet provides a virtual control surface for stop / start / pause etc and virtually any style and combination of analogue and digital clocks and timers can be reproduced.

IP Audio and Video continues to occupy much of our effort and this year we introduced our CallMe Browser Codec which puts contributors on-the-air with high-quality audio without the need to send a reporter or have the guest come to the studio. There is also no need for custom hardware or software download; they simply click on a web link on a desktop, laptop, tablet or smartphone which takes them to the Station's branded connection page on the CallMe server where they click to "go live". It works with the Industry-standard ACCESS-IP and BRIC-Link Audio Codecs which have just had a significant update to provide improved connectivity and reliability with multi-streaming, bonding and diversity. Until now, combining mobile data feeds needed expensive add-on boxes but this capability is now included as standard. Also introduced is MCC Multi-Codec Control that provides single-screen overview and control of multiple IP Codecs without the need for individual browser windows, showing call quality status and other pertinent information clearly and sensibly.

The Comrex LiveShot IP Video Codec is a compact camera-mountable multi-channel device for streaming HD video and audio from the field to the studio using the public internet. Complete with separate return video, IFB and full-duplex intercom/cue channel, it is specifically designed to perform on challenging networks. An integrated one-box solution, it really is the next-generation of video uplink solution for Live Remote ENG. It has Ethernet plus multi-USB connectivity, bonding and diversifying between multiple connections to ensure sufficient and reliable data bandwidth with clever throttling to ensure that delay is not introduced just because of one path with latency or poor connectivity.

On show for the first time is the V4X Intelligent 4G/LTE/3G Antenna. Its 26dB array checks all available cells and carries out a data up/download test before locking onto the cell with the best data throughput which may well be not the one with the strongest signal – and could be located even 10-15km distant. It provides Ethernet and WiFi connectivity – and it really works in congested situations or where there is only marginal coverage.

Our Co-Exhibitor JK Audio has probably the best – and lowest cost – range of Telephone Interfaces and Hybrids and are well-known for providing hands-free Bluetooth connectivity to mobile phones and intercom beltpacks. New at IBC is AutoHybrid-IP2 which is a dual VoIP/AoIP Hybrid which connects as a SIP extension to a VoIP phone system, providing a next-generation solution where analogue phone lines are no longer used.

And finally, Unity Intercom uses smartphones as intercom stations to provide 2-wire and 4-wire systems at a fraction of the cost of a conventional hardware system. A 14-day demo version can be downloaded from our website – and using the unlock codec “vortex”, customers receive 5% discount from any eventual purchase.

The client app for iPhone, Android, PC and Mac is free.

Vortex Communications Ltd will be at IBC, Stand 11G11.

This article is also available to read at BFV online.
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