The audiovisual industry professionals face significant challenges when installing and implement arrays, switches, screens and projectors, among other device.
By Micha Risling *
Each project presents its own challenges, and by the existing or future infrastructure (cable type, cable quality), by the architectural design (distances, visual elegance), or even by the complexity and costs (equipment or Global installation).
The arrival of the display with resolution in high definition, 3D and super high definition add more pressure to the situation, as is expected of the equipment and infrastructure that can handle a huge amount of bandwidth, without compromising quality.
The HDBaseT is the de facto standard for transmitting audio and video super high definition, Ethernet, controls, power and USB via LAN cables at a distance of up to 100 meters.
From the beginning, the goal of HDBaseT has been to ensure the best possible experience for users to transmit high-performance video through a cable infrastructure inexpensive and ubiquitous. In other words, the HDBaseT allows the transmission of high definition multimedia content without compression via LAN cables (Cat5e and later).
HDBaseT technology employs an asymmetrical transmission (Fig. 1), whereby a bandwidth of 8Gb / s audio and video, Ethernet, and different controls from the source devices to target devices is sent, but only one lower bandwidth of 300Mb / s (audio, Ethernet and controls) is transferred. The HDBaseT uses four pairs of LAN cables to achieve this bandwidth, and to send up 100W power through the same line and simultaneously.
The HDBaseT is based on an innovative DSP engine and an analog front architecture (AFE). This makes possible an extremely robust and resilient platform that can transmit video even high definition super 4K at a speed Gbps link 8, 10 unlike Gbps requiring HDMI (high definition multimedia interface). The HDBaseT not imply the additional burden that adds HDMI to correct errors, and still guarantees a flawless transmission of the video signal.
The HDBaseT uses a coding PAM16, a version of the technology pulse-amplitude modulation (PAM, for its acronym in English), which represents digital data as an encoding scheme using different levels of DC voltage at high rates.
The PAM 16 allows the HDBaseT control electrical interference and at the same time continue to meet the high expected return. Although the HDBaseT uses the same encryption technology that Ethernet and even has an Ethernet channel for transmitting 100BaseT, packet technology is different from traditional Ethernet packets. The HDBaseT depends on the same physical cable infrastructure.
This simplicity and great functionality HDBaseT became the de facto standard in professional residential and audiovisual sector.
Commercial and consumer electronics have inserted a set of integrated circuits HDBaseT to enhance the advantages and benefits they can offer.
The new 5Play
The cornerstone of HDBaseT technology is the new 5Play (Fig.2), a set of functions that converge on a single LAN cable covering a distance of up 100m:
1. Audio and video: even the HDBaseT transmits video (4K) super high definition uncompressed. It supports all HDMI 1.4 features, including EPG, CEC, EDID and HDCP. The exceptional video coding scheme of HDBaseT guarantees the highest quality video with almost zero latency. The HDBaseT audio is compatible with all standard formats, including Dolby Digital, DTS, Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD Master Audio.
2. Ethernet: The HDBaseT supports an Ethernet connection 100Mb, allowing communication between televisions, sound systems, computers and other CE devices and access to any stored multimedia content (such as music or video transmissions). The HDBaseT also supports Ethernet backup mode, which allows seamless integration between HDBaseT device and a single Ethernet infrastructure. In this case, only the Ethernet connection functions are enabled.
3. Controls: HDBaseT supports various control signals for multiple purposes: consumer electronic control (CEC, for its acronym in English), RS-232 (recommended standard) and infrared (IR). The IP control is also enabled, thanks to the support of an Ethernet channel. The wide range of control options HDBaseT offers manufacturers virtually unlimited opportunities.
4. Power supply: It can transmit power supply to DC 100W through it CAT5e / 6 cable. This important aspect of the new 5Play gives you the freedom to locate computers where you want it and not where there is an installed power source.
5. USB: Specification defined 2.0 compatibility with USB ports, which opened the door to new applications such as functionality KVM (keyboard, video and mouse) and touch screen.
Additionally, the specification 2.0 - 2013 launched in mid - also introduced the functionality of multiple data streams, fiber optic support and improved performance 4K.
Thanks to the broad set of functions, simplicity in the configuration and the use of economic and popular LAN cabling, HDBaseT can be used in various applications, including theaters in residential home, digital signage, corporate projections, industrial PCs and medical applications and military.
In residential facilities (Fig. 3), the HDBaseT offers elegant design, with a single cable to connect all devices. No more tangled cables. To hide the source devices, since the HDBaseT allows transmissions of up 100 m (including video 4K), without compromising quality and no latency. For example, since the whole house is connected, the HDBaseT lets you start seeing something in the room and continue watching in the room with just a few clicks on a tablet or a smartphone application.
This is because the HDBaseT offers multizone connectivity, thanks to which it is possible to transmit content from any source to any screen, without any inconvenience. In addition, if you are watching something and you should check your email or look up something online, you can pause your program, change fonts (for example, the Blu-ray the computer), and use your television as the screen of your PC . When finished, you can return to your movie and resume where it was interrupted.
In the area of corporate and business applications, the HDBaseT is widely used in boardrooms, screens of hotels and restaurants, educational facilities (secondary and above) (Fig. 4), among others, thanks to its easy installation and operation . In addition, the existing cable infrastructure is used, resulting in additional savings. Because the HDBaseT meets the HDMI specification, it can complement existing configurations without requiring any large-scale overhaul.
The 2.0 specification expands the roles of current technology, since it allows touch screen functionality (for example, at an airport or fast food restaurant), and point connectivity multipoint (for multiple data streams and daisy chain). The HDBaseT can also transmit high-definition digital content through fiber optics, opening new markets in the military field and health, where the optical fiber is the standard infrastructure for connectivity.
The HDBase represents clear immediate benefits for installers and integrators worldwide. Technology revolutionized what was once a process of several hours both before and during any installation, given the complexity of the existing infrastructure. In examining the challenges these professionals had to face in their daily activities, the HDBaseT emerges as the solution to many problems:
Distance: Before the arrival of HDBaseT, installers had a limit to the distance that could locate the source devices and destination, unless costly employ the optical fiber. The HDBaseT can be used at a distance of up to 100 m with a single jump and even 800 m with eight jumps.
Functions: The functions 5Play group expanded the possible contents could offer without increasing the complexity and costs. In fact, feeding through HDBaseT (POH, a variant of PoE, Power over Ethernet) is another benefit of technology, since it eliminates the need for a separate power supply.
Elegance: the HDBaseT uses a single cable, which tangles and clutter are removed, and / or the hassle of having to hide it the bundles of cables.
Quality: The fundamental purpose of HDBaseT streaming video is super high definition uncompressed (up 4K), with low latency and no electromagnetic interference that compromises the quality.
Simplicity: The HDBaseT uses standard LAN (Cat5e and later) cables. These cables are easy to connect on the ground with standard RJ-45. LAN cables also reduce installation costs and time.
HDBaseT became the de facto standard in the industry for professional commercial residential audiovisual and industry, thanks to the work of the HDBaseT Alliance, since its inception in 2010, which are part of LG Electronics, Samsung Electronics, Sony Pictures Entertainment and Valens.
The Alliance encourages and promotes the adoption of HDBaseT technology as a global standard for high-definition digital connectivity. Currently it has more than 100 members, with hundreds of HDBaseT technology products in the market, among others, extenders, matrixes, projectors, AV receivers, screens (including 4K) and testing equipment.
The HDBaseT is the obvious choice for installations and projects that require high-definition digital transmission over a distance greater than a few meters and reasonably priced. Without compromising quality, HDBaseT technology allows installers and end users save time, money and headaches.
* Micha Risling is the chairman of the HDBaseT Alliance marketing.