NAB: Harmonic Introduces New Media Server System

Related: NAB Show 2015 Complete Coverage

Harmonic used its opening press conference to announce the launch of the Spectrum X, a new media service system and to highlight the expanded playout control capabilities of its VOS virtualized media processing platform.

The Spectrum X media server system is designed for production and playout applications and is part of the company’s strategy of helping broadcasters make the shift to IP and IT-based broadcast workflows that will allow them to be more flexible and efficient in launching new services.

As part of that push, it integrates SDI and IP I/O on the same chassis. The software-based system also uses Harmonic's VOS technologies, combining file, baseband and transport stream ingest with comprehensive integrated channel playout capabilities. Those include graphics and branding, DVE, master control switching and audio mixing. 

It supports a broad range of SD and HD formats and is upgradable to Ultra HD.

"As the first playout server to mix SDI and IP I/O with up/down/cross-conversion capabilities in the same chassis, the Spectrum X server not only facilitates users' shift to IP playout, but also powers new revenue-generating services at a lower total cost of ownership," said Bart Spriester, senior VP, video products at Harmonic in a statement.

To expand the capabilities of its VOS virtualized media processing platform, Harmonic also announced the Harmonic Virtual Media API (VMA) interface.

It provides an open application control interface for broadcast automation control of VOS.

The VMA has been adopted by such automation vendors as Pebble Beach Systems, Dayang Technology Development and VJU.

"The integrated functionalities offered by Electra XVM and Electra X media processors have already been deployed globally by numerous Harmonic customers," explained Spriester. "With the announcement of our open VMA for intelligent control, Harmonic increases operational efficiencies and cost savings for video content and service providers, while enabling them to realize the full capabilities of virtualization, unlocking new workflows such as OTT delivery and IP-based playout solutions for linear integrated channel/channel-in-a-box, cloud and edge applications."

Also during the press conference, Harmonic noted that it was working with SES and other broadcast tech providers to deliver a live UltraHD broadcast feed to a cable headend and system inside the Las Vegas Convention Center.