T-VIPS Launches JPEG 2000 Transport in U.S.

T-VIPS will launch its TVG 450 video transport solution in
the U.S. at the
National Association of Broadcasters convention in Las
Vegas (April 10-15).

The Norway-based video-transport firm bills TVG 450 as the
world's first product designed to carry 3D, 3D HD at 1080p, HDTV
and standard-definition video using the JPEG2000 compression system over Internet-protocol

Key applications include broadcast contribution, live
coverage of sporting events, studio-to-studio media exchange, high-definition
contribution and 3D backhaul.

While the product is capable of handling the highest-quality
3D formats that use a separate 1080p feed for each eye, much of the immediate
demand for the system is likely to come from broadcasters, producers and
programmers seeking to improve the quality of their HD signals.

"With the popularity of these 52-inch high-definition
television sets and Blu-ray players that offer fantastic images, consumers are
carrying more about the quality that they are getting on the broadcast
channels," said T-VIPS chief operating officer Janne T. Morstol. "There is driving
[programmers and broadcasters] to higher quality HD" and "that is increasing
the interest in JPEG2000 in contribution."

MPEG compression systems remain the most widely used around
the world and the bandwidth-intensive JPEG2000 compression system -- which would typically
transport HD content at 70 to 125 Megabytes per second -- is unlikely to
replace MPEG systems in the last mile into the home anytime soon.

But JPEG2000, which is widely used in digital cinema, has
become more popular in the television industry in the last few years. That's
because it offers a number of advantages over MPEG transport systems for
broadcast contribution, backhaul and studio-to-studio media exchange of HD
content, Morstol said.

"It offers high quality video with 4:2:2 support and 10-bit
resolution, with ultra low latency and no quality loss over networks," where
the content is compressed and recompressed several times along the transmission
chain, Morstol said.

By contrast, artifacts and other image-quality problems can
be introduced into a MPEG video stream each time it is encoded or decoded.

JPEG2000 has also proven popular for sports contribution. "For
live coverage of sports and high-motion content JPEG2000 works especially well,
because the images do not break up as you see with MPEG contribution," Morstol

Latency rates are also extremely low, around 100 milliseconds
for encoding and decoding, she noted.

The new TVG 450 platform, which is already being used in Europe,
is also designed to handle a number of upcoming technologies, including 3D
content and 3-gig or 1080p high definition production infrastructures.

"Nobody knows how fast 3D will catch on with consumers but it
is important for our customers to know that the system can handle whatever
requirements they might face in the future for 3D and 1080p production," noted

The fact that the system can be upgraded from SD to HD
and other formats has been particularly important for its adoption in Europe,
where broadcasters have only recently been ramping up their HD content. "A lot
of our customers in Europe have been starting with standard definition" but like
the fact that they can easily upgrade "from SD to HD and ultimately 3D," she