1 people don’t realize. NDI is already being leveraged at scale for productions
today. In the recent boon of NDI, many
major companies have come forth to
work directly with NewTek on products to leverage NDI and their specialty (Vizrt, Wowza, Skype).
He adds that NDI benefits “live productions
wanting to be both flexible and not have a ton
of overhead because so much of the technolo-
gy can leverage consumer-level IT hardware.
This means you can cover complex produc-
tions like collegiate football games on a frac-
tion of the cost and lose nothing in your pro-
New Tek has taken the long view in developing
NDI. While a dedicated network is advised for
any video application, the protocol is extremely
light on bandwidth requirements, which helps IT
departments sleep easier. It also currently pro-
vides support up to 8K resolutions. So although
the TC1 offers resolutions only up to 4K, users
of NDI will be ready for next-gen productions
with today’s technology. This also means that if
you’re wary of investing in a 4K system because
it’s still too early, forget about it. Even if you’re
only producing 1080 content, an NDI workflow
will still support you well into the future of pos-
sible changes in UHD production. And before
you swear off NDI due to previous bad experi-
ences with IP video, know that NDI was devel-
oped specifically to alleviate common IP video
problems like high latency and visual artifacts
or quality loss. New Tek even claims that 4K res-
olutions can be recorded at up to 1,000 fps using
NDI’s efficient encoding.
The last part of NDI’s hat trick is the fact that
it is a true end-to-end IP video solution. What
this means, according to Burgos, is that, “Once
a signal converts from SDI (or whatever it start-
ed out as) into NDI, it will stay NDI the entire
way through until delivery. This is a benefit for
NDI because it allows for the flexibility (we don’t
care what resolution or type the source is), scal-
ability (NDI is extremely light on the network),
[and] future proofing.”
Carroll adds this:
By ‘full end-to-end IP solution’ we
mean being able to create and deliver
multicamera video content over a net-
work without the use of a single SDI ca-
ble. Since we introduced our NDI PTZ
Camera and the connect Spark prod-
ucts, this makes it possible to connect
cameras (and other devices with the
Spark products) onto the network, into
your switcher, and out. We have the
MediaDS, a 4-channel streaming encod-
er which can take your NDI signal and
output it to any number of destinations
at different resolutions as necessary.
Being able to route cameras and switchers to
the TC1 over a network reduces your cable requirements. Some NDI or IP cameras support
Power over Ethernet (PoE) and can further reduce cabling by one, removing the need for a
dedicated power supply. This allows many cameras to be used with only one or two cables—
Ethernet for power and control (in the case of
PTZ cameras) and SDI for signal (Figure 4).
Even a switcher can be plugged into the TC1
with just an Ethernet cable. NDI is not your father’s Video over IP, and it can prove more than
just useful for your live sports productions.
Paul Schmutzler ( firstname.lastname@example.org) has been involved
in various aspects of photography, film, and video production,
post-production, and motion graphics for more than 10 years.
He reviews tools of the trade as a freelance tech journalist.
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for power and
SDI for signal