Imagine Comm. Partners With Sony on New Interface

Imagine Communications has announced that it will work with Sony on an initiative to help with the transition to Ultra HD and IP-based network infrastructure by supporting Sony’s Network Media Interface Initiative.

The news is important because the adoption of UHD has been limited by the bandwidth available in the current widely used HD-SDI interface. Currently the increased bandwidth requirements of UHD require four HD-SDI cables for each 4K camera, which creates cabling and logistical challenges.

To help overcome that problem, Imagine Communications says it will support Sony’s Networked Media Interface, a new AV over IP interface for IP-based networking that provides low latency transport of UHD/4K video, audio, reference, metadata and control data.

“Together with Sony, we are pleased to initiate an industry-wide adoption of the Sony’s Networked Media Interface, which resolves the issue of managing the distribution of UHD/4K signals in the network infrastructure,” said Steve Reynolds, CTO of Imagine Communications, in a statement. “This embrace of Sony’s new innovation is not a result of any single vendor’s unique efforts, but instead is a collaboration of the vendor community to ensure that our media and entertainment customers can transition to the next great leap in video quality enhancements and IP innovation.”

“We are delighted to work closely with Imagine Communications to ensure its end-to-end, market leading portfolio can be a catalyst for fostering and standardizing future architectures that are based on IP, open standards and interoperability,” said Tetsuya Iwamoto, general manager of Sony, in a statement. “Sony is committed to being a key driver of this important evolution in our industry.”

Reynolds also noted that the interface will also speed the adoption of IP-based infrastructures. “The logistical issues associated with the massive bandwidth increase required for UHD/4K are almost forcing the industry to migrate to an IP-centric network environment,” he explained. “Fortunately, we have enablers that help us in this transition such as Sony’s Networked Media Interface. Add to that the new capabilities like ubiquitous 10 GBEs and 40 GBE IP switching provided by the reliable IT vendor community and other innovations like Imagine Communications’ recently announced Magellan SDN Orchestrator, and the industry now has complete solutions to enable their gradual transition to UHD/4K.”