Barix Ships Award-Winning Analog-to-IP Speaker Upgrade Solution

June 24, 2021

Available immediately, IP Former lets integrators add extensive IP functionality to existing loudspeaker installations

ZURICH, SWITZERLAND, October 19, 2020Barix is now shipping its cost-efficient IP Former for transforming analog loudspeakers into feature-rich, networked IP speakers. Enabling easy upgrades of existing audio deployments to support advanced IP functionality, the new module lets systems integrators and installers offer customers a digital audioenvironment without jettisoning their current speakers.

Replacing the 70/100V transformer traditionally used with analog loudspeakers, IP Former adds IP networking capabilities to new or existing speakers. It provides an IP network interface, audio stream decoder and amplifier front-end for a two- to eight-ohm speaker, with power supplied over PoE for streamlined cabling and installation. Current analog speaker installations can be retrofitted by simply switching their transformers with IP Former units, maximizing the lifecycle of customers’ existing investments.

“Many end-customer projects include advanced IP audio features amongst their requirements, but they already have perfectly good analog loudspeakers in their facilities,” said Davide Nossa, Product Manager, Barix. “IP Former lets integrators and systems designers simply upgrade those existing speakers with powerful IP functionality, saving the customer significant money compared to new speakers while avoiding the environmental impact of discarding the old ones.”

IP Former is ideal for bringing IP capabilities to applications ranging from background music and in-venue announcements to paging and emergency warning systems. The flexible device decodes audio streams delivered via HTTPS, RTP or UDP in codec formats including PCM, AACplus, MP3, Opus, G.711 and G.722. SIP negotiation provides compatibility with VoIP phone systems and enables each speaker to be addressed individually, while pre-recorded messages can be stored within the device for fast playout. Native support for the Singlewire’s InformaCast and Syn-Apps’ Revolution platforms enables speakers equipped with IP Former to seamlessly integrate as endpoints for the popular mass notification solutions.

Built on Barix’s programmable and secure IPAM 400 IP audio module, IP Former can be extended with new or custom functionality, providing future-proof flexibility. The solution’s standards-friendly, open architecture enables it to integrate seamlessly into multi-vendor environments.

To learn more about IP Former, please visit barix.com/ip-former. The initial IP Former model, the TPA400, is available immediately and offers 8W RMS output. Systems integrators with different power requirements are invited to contact sales@barix.com to discuss their specific needs.

Barix: We Move Audio (www.barix.com)

Barix supplies simple and reliable solutions and components to systems integrators and end users worldwide.  We move high-quality audio across IP networks, adding value to customer solutions for nearly two decades with hundreds of thousands of devices installed worldwide.  Background music distribution with dynamic advertising insertion for retail shops, bars and hotels; public address solutions for schools and public spaces; and intercom and entry systems for facility surveillance, protection and security are among the many applications of Barix solutions.  Barix also supports OEM projects for a number of Global 500 listed companies serving many industries worldwide.

Atlona Promotes David Shamir to VP of Product Management

June 24, 2021

Expanded role unifies leadership of portfolio strategy and engineering as company prepares for future growth in rapidly shifting landscape

SAN JOSE, California, October 15, 2020 – Atlona, a Panduit company, has promoted David Shamir to VP of Product Management. Reporting to Atlona co-founder and CEO Ilya Khayn, Shamir will continue to lead the company’s product strategy while expanding his responsibilities to oversee engineering and product development.

Shamir takes on his new role as the AV industry navigates many disruptive changes, from technology transitions to pandemic-driven shifts in how people work and learn. Combining product management and engineering leadership into a single role streamlines Atlona’s internal processes, increasing the company’s agility and responsiveness to rapidly evolving market needs.

“Our industry was already very dynamic and constantly changing, but the pandemic has accelerated many existing trends while making AV more critical in environments such as small and home offices,” said Shamir. “With COVID-19, things are changing by the minute, making it challenging to accurately predict how the AV market will evolve. We will stay as nimble as possible to address our customers’ changing needs, while offering flexible solutions that help them adapt to world conditions and whatever their ‘new normal’ becomes.”

Shamir notes that the agility of Atlona’s solutions is strengthened by its leadership in the convergence of AV and IT, a hallmark that he intends to continue. “One of our core philosophies is ‘AV built for IT,’” he explained. “As remote learning, work-at-home, and hybrid working models become more prevalent, IT infrastructure is even more important for keepingeveryone connected. We are crafting our products and roadmap with IT managers’ challenges in mind, while helping dealers and systems integrators efficiently meet customer needs.”

Shamir has served as Atlona’s Director of Product Management since 2015, following senior product management roles at media technology companies including Magnum Semiconductor, Harmonic, and Scopus Video Networks. He has introduced new processes and methodologies at Atlona to quickly and effectively take product ideas from concept to reality. He successfully led several major product line launches, including the OmniStream™ AV over IP platform; Velocity™ SystemAV control and management platform; and Omega™ Series of AV integration solutions for modern workspaces and meeting environments. Shamir takes Atlona’s engineering organization under his umbrella as co-founder and VP of Engineering Michael Khain retires after 17 years with the company.

“David’s insight, experience and process implementation have been major factors in Atlona’s growth and innovation over the past five years,” said CEO Khayn. “We look forward to his expanded leadership as our company tackles the new challenges faced by our customers, and we thank Michael for his exceptional contributions in making Atlona what we are today.”

About Atlona

Atlona, a Panduit company, is a leading global manufacturer of AV over IP distribution, connectivity, and control solutions. The company designs and engineers innovative, award-winning products for a diverse range of residential and commercial AV and IT markets. Backed by an award-winning 10-year warranty, Atlona’s products are developed to enable our customers’ ability to connect and collaborate with simplicity. More information about Atlona is available at atlona.com.

About Panduit

Global connectivity leader Panduit Corp. creates innovative electrical and network infrastructure solutions for applications across the enterprise. Headquartered in Tinley Park, Ill. and operating in 112 worldwide locations, Panduit’s technology leadership and robust ecosystem help support, sustain, and empower business growth in a connected world. panduit.com

Z-HD5500 Cameras from Hitachi Kokusai Help Boitnott Visual Communications Impress Discerning Live Event Clientele

January 12, 2021

Flawless handling of LED backgrounds and native 1080p acquisition elevate IMAG and archiving quality for live event production experts

Woodbury, NY, October 14, 2020 — Virginia-based Boitnott Visual Communications (BVC) provides turnkey design, staging and live production services for corporate meetings and special events across the United States. When the company upgraded its camera technology last year to meet increasing client expectations, they chose Z-HD5500 cameras from Hitachi Kokusai Electric America, Ltd. (Hitachi Kokusai) to deliver the visual quality gains and operational benefits they sought.

BVC serves clients ranging from small businesses to large Fortune 50 corporations and organizations such as the Richmond Forum, which hosts high-profile events featuring speakers including past U.S. presidents, sitting heads of state, and leaders from the sciences, arts, and business. The premium nature of many of its projects makes the quality of its productions extremely important.

“Clients like the Richmond Forum are very particular about the quality of their events and related video productions, as they should be since their attendees are paying for the experience,” said A. Keith Sturtevant, video department head at BVC. “Another of our clients, a financial services company, is also well known as a technology leader, so they want top-notch quality for their live event video even if it’s only for their own internal use.”

With clients requesting higher visual quality, BVC began evaluating new camera options in mid-2019. “The cameras we had been using were getting long in the tooth,” explained Sturtevant. “They were native 720p, and we were upscaling them to 1080i. We needed to get cameras that were technologically capable of directly supporting the higher resolution and better quality our clients were asking for, so we wanted to upgrade to 1080p.”

Systems integrator Digital Video Group (DVG) pointed BVC towards Hitachi cameras, and the ability of the Z-HD5500’s global shutter sensors to flawlessly shoot against LED backdrops proved compelling. “We were using LED walls not only as a main source of IMAG display, but also for backgrounds,” said Sturtevant. “The Z-HD5500 was able to handle that setup, so the LED wall wouldn’t play havoc in the background of the video. Hitachi Kokusai is also a well-known player in the live event space with a great reputation, and you get a great camera with a lot of features for the price of that particular model. It became pretty much a ‘no-brainer’ at that point.”

BVC purchased three Z-HD5500s from DVG alongside upgraded flypacks that also feature a Ross Video main switcher; a Blackmagic Design secondary switcher for streaming; AJA distribution routers and recorders; and Behringer audio mixers. BVC typically deploys the Hitachi cameras and flypacks for larger live events with audiences ranging from 2000 to 5000 attendees, where the equipment powers large IMAG (image magnification) displays and recording for archival purposes.

The Z-HD5500s immediately delivered the quality boost that BVC was aiming for. “The Hitachi cameras have performed wonderfully,” said Sturtevant. “They provide nice, clean, crisp, bright images and great color reproduction even with just the default settings, and regardless of which video walls we’re shooting against.”

Sturtevant also noted that the Z-HD5500’s SMPTE fiber connectivity has simplified setup compared to the multi-cable requirements of BVC’s previous cameras. This combines with the cameras’ ease of use to speed on-site setup. “The new cameras have reduced our setup time, and we can now go into larger venues without cable length challenges,” he explained.

As a service provider, BVC has also enjoyed an additional benefit of the Z-HD5500’s technically-advanced appearance. “The Hitachi cameras look great both inside and out,” Sturtevant said. “You can tell they’re a true broadcast-grade camera just by looking at them, so when we roll in with them, people are impressed before we even turn them on.”

When asked to summarize his experience with the Z-HD5500s, Sturtevant was effusive. “I’d tell people ‘you need to get you some,’” he praised. “I have been nothing but happy with the Z-HD5500s since we acquired them.”

The improved visual results have also been noticed by BVC’s clients, which ultimately is the most important benefit. “Our large clients were very excited to see us step up our game, and they are impressed with the picture quality compared to our old cameras,” Sturtevant concluded.

About Hitachi Kokusai Electric Inc.

Hitachi Kokusai Electric Inc., headquartered in Tokyo, Japan, is a company that manufactures broadcasting systems, security and surveillance systems, wireless communications and information systems. For more information on Hitachi Kokusai Electric Inc., please visit the company’s website at https://www.hitachi-kokusai.co.jp/global/en/index.html.

 

CP Communications Names Lowell Beckner as General Manager

January 12, 2021

Broadcast engineering and management expert will oversee all functions within the company’s headquarters, and drive launch and growth initiatives for its new in-house studio operations

St. Petersburg, Florida, October 13, 2020CP Communications, a leader in innovative solutions and services for live event productions, has appointed Lowell Beckner as General Manager, effective immediately. Reporting to CEO Kurt Heitmann, Beckner will focus on growing CP Communications’ in-house production business for broadcast and AV projects at its St. Petersburg, Florida headquarters, anchored by the new company’s soon-to-launch Red House Streaming Studios. He will oversee the final stages leading up to the studio’s launch in November, and create a cohesive operations entity to ensure continued business growth.

Beckner joins CP Communications with more than two decades of engineering, sales, and management in the broadcast industry. His experience in broadcast engineering and military communications provides him with extensive knowledge of RF and IP technologies and systems, the latter of which is a core part of the Red House Streaming Studios workflow and infrastructure. He will also oversee all general St. Petersburg functions, and serve as the primary interface for CP Communications’ executives across sales, engineering, IT and operations.

“CP Communications has been the leader in live content acquisition and event production for sports and live events for many years,” said Beckner. “The opportunity to lead the company’s new in-house production initiatives and general business operations is an exciting opportunity for an engineer that values technical innovation, and understands the importance of strategic direction to ensure growth and success. I’m looking forward to working with the entire CP Communications team up through the executive level, and establishing a roadmap for future expansion.”

Beckner’s broadcast career began in the military with tours at the Joint Special Operations Command and the White House Communications Agency while serving in the U.S. Air Force. He spent the next 20 years as a broadcast engineer with TV stations in the southeast and with broadcast media network groups, taking on roles of increasing responsibility with Media General, Cox Media Group and E.W. Scripps. He shifted his focus toward IP networking in 2017 as Product Manager, IP Systems for Integrated Microwave Technologies; and as Regional Sales Manager, Live Production for Vislink. His valuable hands-on experience across the entire broadcast ecosystem includes engineering creative solutions for newsroom, playout, transmission, and IP/bonded cellular systems.

“Lowell brings a uniquely diverse and rich background to CP Communications that will drive organization across all key business operations – an integral responsibility of the General Manager position,” said Heitmann. “Lowell will provide day-to-day guidance and decisions that harmonize our teams and initiatives as we work toward the launch and future success of Red House Streaming Studios, and grow our business into interesting new directions. We welcome Lowell to the CP Communications team.”

About CP Communications

For more than three decades, CP Communications has provided high-quality, cost-effective live event production solutions to major broadcasters, sports leagues and teams, and event and production companies. Our solutions include access to experienced professionals, state of the art equipment, and innovative technologies and techniques for wireless audio & video content acquisition, transport and delivery. Our culture of innovation, coupled with the highest quality assurance standards and passion for customer service, promote collaboration with our clients to determine the best custom solution for each live event.

Atlona Introduces Long-Distance USB Extender Kit

January 12, 2021

AT-USB-EX100-KIT offers cost-effective extension of USB signals beyond traditional cabling limits

SAN JOSE, California, October 12, 2020 – Atlona, a Panduit company, has unveiled the AT-USB-EX100-KIT long-distance extender kit for USB signals. Available immediately, the new extension solution supports the transmission of USB 2.0 data up to 330 feet (100 meters) over a single, cost-effective, Category-type twisted pair cable.

The USB-EX100-KIT enables point-to-point extension for USB 2.0 devices across distances exceeding the limitations of traditional cabling. It is ideal for popular video conferencing applications such as Zoom® and Microsoft® Teams®, where USB components including laptops, cameras, microphones, and speakers are often located in different areas of a room. It is equally well-suited to classroom environments for extending USB signals between a touch-screen interactive display and the instructor’s laptop, or from a USB camera at the back of the room to the lecture capture system in a rack.

“Multiple Atlona switchers and extenders already support USB extension alongside high-quality AV signals, but we havealso seen significant demand for a dedicated USB offering,” said David Shamir, VP of Product Management, Atlona. “The USB-EX100-KIT provides an affordable, straightforward solution for applications where only extension of USB signals is required – for example, connecting remote USB cameras or expanding existing AV systems that do not have native USB support.”

The USB-EX100-KIT includes transmitter and receiver endpoints. The receiver features four USB type A ports for peripheral devices, while the transmitter offers two such ports for peripherals plus one USB type B interface for connection to a host computer. Compact enclosures and included brackets allow the locally powered devices to be discretely mounted in furniture, behind displays, or above projectors.

The USB-EX100-KIT is available immediately through Atlona’s global network of authorized channel partners and includes the company’s award-winning 10-year limited product warranty. For more information, please visit atlona.com/at-usb-ex100-kit.

About Atlona

Atlona, a Panduit company, is a leading global manufacturer of AV over IP distribution, connectivity, and control solutions. The company designs and engineers innovative, award-winning products for a diverse range of residential and commercial AV and IT markets. Backed by an award-winning 10-year warranty, Atlona’s products are developed to enable our customers’ ability to connect and collaborate with simplicity. More information about Atlona is available at atlona.com.

About Panduit

Global connectivity leader Panduit Corp. creates innovative electrical and network infrastructure solutions for applications across the enterprise. Headquartered in Tinley Park, Ill. and operating in 112 worldwide locations, Panduit’s technology leadership and robust ecosystem help support, sustain, and empower business growth in a connected world. panduit.com

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