Each year at IBC, thousands of visitors pass through the halls on the lookout for what will be the hot topic of the year. IBC has not started yet but there is plenty of buzz around the "all-IP production plant”, “connected studio”, “networked media".
But one of the real indicators of technology maturity is not the amount of marketing buzz, but how well products from different vendors actually work together in a system. So, how do you filter facts from the noise? Here are some tips.

The first important tip is to start at the right booth. If you are looking for IP kit at IBC, you should pass by the VRT LiveIP demonstration at the EBU booth (10.F20) first. There, you will get a picture of the state of the art using real products from 10 pioneering companies. This project is finalist in the “special recognition” category of the IABM Design & Innovation Awards.

After that, you can continue your exhibition visiting the vendors of your choice and challenging them to prove to you their capabilities to interoperate with other equipment. Here are three questions you should definitely ask them:

  • Do you support open standards for the transport and synchronisation of media flows (e.g., SMPTE 2022-6, AES-67 and PTP/SMPTE 2059)?
  • Can you use standard IT switches (supporting Open Flow) or do you require media-specific ones?
  • How can your system be made redundant (e.g., SMPTE 2022-7) and resilient to network errors (e.g., SMPTE 2022-5)?

It all starts here.

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