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AVB - The next generation of Digital Media Transport

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Audio Video Bridging (AVB) switches can carry up to 420 channels in each direction, compared to 32 for Cobranet.

If you aren’t already using Audio Video Bridging (AVB) switches in big installations, you will be soon. While the technology is still relatively new, one manufacturer predicts all switches will have AVB capability “someday soon.”

While the technology is still relatively new, one manufacturer predicts all switches will have AVB capability “someday soon.” AVB switches can carry up to 420 audio channels in each direction, dwarfing Cobranet switches, which carry up to 32 audio channels through each wire, said Mike DeFreece, regional manager at Biamp Systems, during a recent AVI-SPL University webinar, “AVB: The Next Generation of Digital Media Transport.”

“Cobranet has served pro A/V well for 20 years, but today we need higher channel counts, fewer delays, and easier setup,” DeFreece said. “This is a technology that saves time and effort.”BIAMP SYSTEMS Terira Server

AVB standards were developed by IEEE 802.1 and the technology is backed by the A/V, IT, automotive and consumer electronics industries. Because AVB used an open source approach, there are no licensing fees for individual nodes, and the technology meets the needs of large-scale distribution. The AVnu Alliance is testing the interoperability of AVB products, DeFreece said, noting there is less programming time necessary because the switches carry more information and are fully redundant.

Photos: 10 Ways Audio Video Bridging Impacts CIs

A single standard, he said, means lower costs, greater efficiency and product compatibility. That improves synchronization and reduces buffering delays. AVB data can exist on the same network as email, control systems, VoIP and more.

“We believe this has real legs,” DeFreece said. “It’s going to be a technology that moves very quickly.” He sees potential for AVB to become used in a variety of markets, including government, transportation, convention centers, courthouses, conference rooms and stadiums, to name a few.

He expects to see a “rapid maturity” in AVB technology, meaning eventually integrators will be able to use it in projects of all sizes, no matter how big or small.

“The switch companies want to be able to sell more and see the demand go up, so I expect to see a lot of these available in the next year or two,” DeFreece said. “They’re ready to get started. Everyone is pretty excited about the technology.”

Reproduced with permission from the author. Sourced from www.commercialintegrator.com 

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