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Curious About AV over IP? How SDVOE Fits into the Equation

Article posted on Oct 15, 2019

If you haven’t yet considered, or at least thought about, implementing AV over IP (AVoIP) solutions into your technology landscape, you may be behind the curve. While AVoIP solutions are not for everyone, it is worth noting that the industry is predicting a trend toward an increased amount of AV signals residing on an Ethernet IP network.

As we near the 2020s, our society is becoming more and more dependent on networks and the internet. Today, network connectivity is expected, just like electrical power. And it’s no wonder why. Networks have become a ubiquitous infrastructure and are well suited to deliver a variety of services to consumers - delivering data, telephony, and AV content all at the same time. AVoIP and particularly SDVoE, is rapidly becoming the modern way to distribute AV signals in a room, in a building or across a campus.

As AV and IT managers have undoubtedly noticed, the increased popularity of video demands higher-performing AV signal distribution. The numerous alternatives and benefits resulting from the distribution of AV signals across IP networks make an AVoIP strategy much more appealing in the minds of system integrators and end users alike. Lossless video quality, ultra-low latency, greater flexibility and scalability, simplified cabling and reduced infrastructure costs, and improved control and monitoring are just a few of the reasons many technology managers have embraced an AVoIP infrastructure. However, these advantages do not come without ensuring that you have taken some major considerations into account prior to implementing such a strategy.

Network Bandwidth. Vistacom experts agree: AV content should be moved over its own IP network, rather than mixed in with other content on the main enterprise network. This eliminates the issue of the network prioritizing one type of traffic over the other, giving audio and video content the uninterrupted transmission it requires. When video signals have access to more bandwidth, signals can be processed less, resulting in the elimination of distortion, visual artifacts, and latency. Your video, audio, and even standard spreadsheets will be clear, crisp, and flawless.

AV and IT Convergence. The key here is communication. AV and IT professionals must both understand the requirements of putting AV technology on the network. And systems integrators, like Vistacom, have learned that a constant line of communication to the IT department is necessary. Any decisions to pursue an AVoIP infrastructure must be made alongside IT pros, along with discussions on bandwidth requirements, IP addresses, and equipment, security implications, installation schedule, etc.

A Slew of Options. It’s not just about making the decision to move to an AVoIP structure, but instead finding the correct AVoIP solution for your specific ecosystem. There is SDVoE, AVB/TSN, Dante AV, and HDBaseT-IP, to name a few. That’s a nice list of acronyms, but how are you really supposed to understand which will work best for you? That’s where we come in. Vistacom engineers have been trained and certified on this very question, and have gained many insights from their experience in designing and installing AVoIP solutions for our clients. Let us do the work so you can worry less.

One of the newest AVoIP technologies on the market is SDVoE, which stands for Software Defined Video over Ethernet. The SDVoE Alliance is a partnership of manufactures that use the same underlying technology to deliver audio, video and other signals including USB over a standard 10Gbit Ethernet network. SDVoE leverages the fact that networks are becoming faster while costing less (much like computer processors) and can deliver a 10-gigabit data rate where in the past they only delivered 1-gigabit or 100-megabits. Leveraging this increased network bandwidth allows SDVoE products to deliver AV signals across the network with little or no compression. And they can deliver the signals with latency of less than one millisecond. The lossless video quality and ultra-low latency make the SDVoE technology a perfect fit for demanding applications such as endoscopic surgery, live video production, and ultra-high resolution visual imagery such as maps, CAD drawings, and financial spreadsheets.

As an alliance of partnerships, manufacturers of the SDVoE alliance work together to give the consumer a vast array of fully compatible choices. These solutions also offer an array of additional features beyond simple delivery of AV over a network, such as:

  • Videowall capability or the ability to display content over multiple flat panel displays in order to create one large image.
  • Multiview, which is the ability to share multiple content sources on a single display or videowall.
  • The built-in USB capability means SDVoE can function as a KVM matrix. This provides the ability to connect a keyboard, video display and mouse to a computer that is remotely located, for example. And not just in a one-to-one relationship but multiple computers across multiple users.

While SDVoE is one solution to AVoIP, there are many others to consider – of which comparing each to the others is like comparing apples to oranges. Vistacom’s certified Engineering department can lead you through the fog and recommend the most logical and cost-effective path forward if you are seriously considering a move to AV over IP. Contact us today to start discussing the possibilities.


Curious About AV over IP? How SDVOE Fits into the Equation