X Platform update offers increased channel density without compromising video quality
27th September, Oslo, Norway – Appear, the global leader in media processing and delivery technology, today announced that its X Platform now supports ultra-low latency HEVC encoding. Targeting the mobile and fixed contribution, as well as the live compression markets, added support for ultra-low latency HEVC encoding on the same hardware unit that also supports low and normal delay means Appear’s X Platform can deliver high quality video in any application. Enabling broadcasters, telcos and production companies to deliver truly immersive live video experiences at a lower cost per channel. By adding support for ultra-low delay HEVC encoding, Appear is enabling customers to balance their bandwidth, video quality and latency requirements—the X Platform encoder module supports up to 2 x ultra-high-definition (UHD) or 8 x high-definition (HD) channels in standard and low delay modes or up to 2 x UHD or 4 x HD channels with ultra-low HEVC latency, making it the densest and most power efficient solution on the market.
Live sports broadcasting relies on low latency, high quality transmissions. The move to IP-based remote production has completely transformed how these events are captured and delivered to viewers. In modern stadiums, camera feeds are contributed using IP connectivity, over SMPTE 2110 or SMPTE 2022-6, to a central site for production or to support video assistant referee (VAR) application, drastically reducing the number of people and equipment needed on-site.
But as broadcasting resolutions move towards 4K and 8K, bandwidth availability between event-site and production facilities are still a challenge. Available bandwidth varies between locations, and for many high-value live sports events, satellite is still used as a backup for the IP network. Regardless of the move towards more bandwidth intensive video resolutions, capturing and broadcasting live event coverage with little to no delay, while maintaining high visual quality, is still essential.
Appear’s X Platform is used by broadcasters, telcos and production companies around the world for live contribution and remote production. The X Platform offers the ability to effortlessly blend encapsulation formats such as MPEG TS, ST2022-6, ST2110, Zixi and SRT with an equally impressive array of codecs and video processing functions.
Appear has upgraded its software for the existing ECx110 and ECx210 encoder modules to significantly increase service density when encoding in ultra-low HEVC delay mode. The density per module has been increased to support 4 x SD / HD services, or 2 x UHD services whilst retaining a sub 200ms encode / decode latency performance (“glass to glass” delay).
The X Platform also allows customers to run in hybrid UHD mode with 1 x UHD and 2 further channels broadcasting in any quality “up to” full HD simultaneously on the same module. The unique encoding architecture delivers a flexible array of premium features, including HDR support, as well as delivering high quality live video with low power consumption, at sub 85watts per module.
“We’re continuously looking to improve our products to ensure we carry on delivering the best-in class solutions that bring immersive viewing experiences to life,” said Thomas Lind, Product Director at Appear. “This latest update is significant for our customers because the capacity and functionality offered matches the growing trend to encode multiple services at the lowest delay point for VAR and remote production, whilst dramatically reducing the cost per channel prices. If required, the same module can be rapidly switched to other encoding modes, such as OTT encoding, or converted to become a decoder or transcoder.”
Ultra-low delay HEVC encoding is now available with the latest system update on the X Platform.