Sport Pushes the Limits of Wireless Transmission


TV-Bay Magazine
Read ezine online
Sport Pushes the Limits of Wireless Transmission
By Mark Anderson, Marketing Operations Manager, Vislink
With the London 2012 Games and the UEFA EURO 2012 European Football championships just around the corner, physical and mental endurance will be pushed to the limits. Those pressures also apply to the technology used to cover these events for the wider world because there is usually one, split-second chance to capture the action – as it happens. Second place is for the first loser.
In the past, capturing sporting action could not be left to chance, so wired communications systems were the norm, but such systems had a great many limitations, both technically and creatively, so viable wireless alternatives had to be found and radically up their game, particularly with the advent of HD. And because HD typically requires five times the bandwidth of SD, better methods of transferring those images wirelessly had to be developed, not to mention the challenges of up- and down-sampling, which can seriously degrade HD image quality if not done correctly.
However, as sporting world records tumble, so too do old technologies and working practices, and this is particularly true in the case of wireless camera links, a “game” that is now played at the highest (definition) levels.
Moving with the times
Wireless camera systems are now of course commonplace at live sporting events, most of which are captured in HD. Feeds from wireless cameras now supplement video from an array of wired cameras, but if the wireless links create a noticeable signal delay, it’s a non-starter, which was a challenge for wireless transmission manufacturers.
The Missing Link
So, how did wireless transmission systems get to where they are today, able to deliver seamless contributions as much higher bandwidths?
Vislink brands Gigawave and Link Research have led the way in developing reliable, innovative wireless technologies, not least because they were once fierce competitors, each driving the other to improve and innovate. The relentless drive to compete meant that each company pushed the other as the need for ever more innovative ways to cover live events, some never before captured, emerged.
To do this, many wireless solutions use DVB-T, which is very good for static, terrestrial systems, but DVB-T as originally conceived was not necessarily optimised for fast moving action or HD applications and initially suffered from drop-outs and interference. It also had its limitations in mobile applications, which of course is where sport predominantly resides. So what, in the end, was the answer?
Well, it’s all in the modulation. The need to make pictures more and more compelling required innovative technology to make it work. Link Research worked hard to develop its own proprietary modulation scheme, LMS-T. It has been proven that LMS-T modulation can carry high bandwidth data more reliably than DVB-T because it exploits more of the 10MHz channel bandwidth and boasts superior error correction. Unlike DVB-T, LMS-T doesn’t suffer from excessive dropouts and interference at the bandwidths and data rates required for high quality HD transmission. Moreover, LMS-T means that operators can use the 16QAM modulation but retain the robustness of a QPSK setting. Consequently, this technique is ideal for fast moving action.
Notwithstanding the proven advantages of LMS-T, Gigawave has also had great success in developing more robust on-board modulation technologies for other high-profile motorsport events such as MotoGP and FIA GT series.
Along with these advances strides have also been made with Deep Interleaving and most recently Link Research has added “Digital Pre-Distortion” (LDPD) which again improves wireless camera operation by providing better adjacent channel performance and ultra-clean RF transmission. This means that higher transmit power levels can now be achieved while remaining compliant with regulatory standards, resulting in longer range and more robust wireless links. Link Research has also developed IP diversity and ASI over RF as other options to add to the arsenal of techniques available to broadcasters.
As technology evolved to reliably address and exploit new technologies, it opened up vast new opportunities for broadcasters, not only in the types of events that could be covered, but new, compelling viewing angles. A camera and transmitter can now be reliably fitted to virtually any helmet, chassis, pole or mast to capture and transmit almost literally from the eye of the athlete.
As you transmit, so you shall receive
The drive to provide reliable transmission technology, however, is only one side of the story. You can transmit at the highest achievable quality, but that does little good if the technology designed to receive it is substandard.
Both Gigawave and Link Research have been developing central receive technology that provides a comprehensive blanket of receive sites to create what is in effect a cell network, the result of which enables a crew to broadcast from various points around a city or to cover, for example an entire marathon from start to finish with no concerns about breakups or receiver failure.
These cell systems’ ability to go live instantly, direct from a camera without any support vehicle or technicians, has revolutionised how sport can be covered. Strategically placed receive sites and compatible camera systems can remove the need for a satellite truck at every receive site, thereby improving reliability while simultaneously reducing the costs of covering sporting events.
The Vislink advantage
Vislink is synonymous with innovation in live television with an installed base of more than 100,000 wireless communications systems in over 90 countries. Vislink companies Link Research and Gigawave are leaders in wireless technology and continue to set standards for reliability and quality. Products from both companies have special features designed to cope with any event, from the highest profile football competitions and athletics meetings, to sailing, multiple motorsports and beyond.

Tags: iss066 | vislink | wireless | sport | olympics | uefa | euro 2012 | N/A
Contributing Author N/A

Read this article in the tv-bay digital magazine
Article Copyright tv-bay limited. All trademarks recognised.
Reproduction of the content strictly prohibited without written consent.

Related Interviews
  • IMT Vislink HCAM 4k UHD transmitter at IBC 2018

    IMT Vislink HCAM 4k UHD transmitter at IBC 2018

  • IMT Vislink Air Pro 75Ka and NewSwift 240HD Antenna at IBC 2018

    IMT Vislink Air Pro 75Ka and NewSwift 240HD Antenna at IBC 2018

  • IMT Vislink Overview at IBC 2018

    IMT Vislink Overview at IBC 2018

  • The CFU5 4k Transmitter from Vislink at IBC 2017

    The CFU5 4k Transmitter from Vislink at IBC 2017

  • Vislink at IBC 2012

    Vislink at IBC 2012

  • Vislink at IBC2011

    Vislink at IBC2011

  • Smallest COFDM Transmitter from IMT-Solutions at NAB 2017

    Smallest COFDM Transmitter from IMT-Solutions at NAB 2017

  • Wireless Transmitters for Boxx TV at NAB 2018

    Wireless Transmitters for Boxx TV at NAB 2018

  • Pliant Technologies CrewComm Wireless Intercom at IBC 2017

    Pliant Technologies CrewComm Wireless Intercom at IBC 2017

  • Wireless 4K Transmitter from DTC Domo Broadcast at IBC 2017

    Wireless 4K Transmitter from DTC Domo Broadcast at IBC 2017

  • Boxx TV Wireless Transmission with Meridian, Atom and Zenith on show at IBC 2017

    Boxx TV Wireless Transmission with Meridian, Atom and Zenith on show at IBC 2017

  • Videosys Wireless Transmitters at BVE 2014

    Videosys Wireless Transmitters at BVE 2014

  • Sony Wireless Microphones at BVE 2014

    Sony Wireless Microphones at BVE 2014

  • Gearhouse Broadcast on Tour May 2013

    Gearhouse Broadcast on Tour May 2013

  • Boxx TV Company Overview at NAB 2018

    Boxx TV Company Overview at NAB 2018

  • Boxx TV updates at NAB 2017

    Boxx TV updates at NAB 2017

  • Atom Lite from Boxx at NAB 2017

    Atom Lite from Boxx at NAB 2017

  • Quantum C80 from Cineo at NAB 2017

    Quantum C80 from Cineo at NAB 2017

  • Pliant Technologies at IBC 2016

    Pliant Technologies at IBC 2016

  • Clear-Com FreeSpeak II at NAB 2016

    Clear-Com FreeSpeak II at NAB 2016

  • Thomson Broadcast at IBC 2014

    Thomson Broadcast at IBC 2014

  • Clear-Com LinQ at IBC 2014

    Clear-Com LinQ at IBC 2014

  • Clear-Com FreeSpeak II at IBC 2014

    Clear-Com FreeSpeak II at IBC 2014

  • SIS LIVE ManPak and LoStow at IBC 2014

    SIS LIVE ManPak and LoStow at IBC 2014

  • Cobham satellite EXPLORER products at IBC 2014

    Cobham satellite EXPLORER products at IBC 2014

  • Cobham new receiver at IBC 2014

    Cobham new receiver at IBC 2014

  • Dejero at NAB 2014

    Dejero at NAB 2014

  • Tally Technologies at BVE 2014

    Tally Technologies at BVE 2014

  • Trilogy on BroadcastShow LIVE at IBC 2013

    Trilogy on BroadcastShow LIVE at IBC 2013

  • Cobham on BroadcastShow LIVE at IBC 2013

    Cobham on BroadcastShow LIVE at IBC 2013

  • Clear-Com: Tempest at NAB 2013

    Clear-Com: Tempest at NAB 2013

  • Anton Bauer at NAB 2013

    Anton Bauer at NAB 2013

  • Cobham: Mini RF Transmitters at NAB 2013

    Cobham: Mini RF Transmitters at NAB 2013

  • Cobham: RF Transmitter at NAB 2013

    Cobham: RF Transmitter at NAB 2013

  • VideoSys at BVE North 2012

    VideoSys at BVE North 2012

  • IMT Broadcast at NAB 2012

    IMT Broadcast at NAB 2012

  • Anton Bauer at NAB 2012

    Anton Bauer at NAB 2012

  • IDX at BVE North 2011

    IDX at BVE North 2011

  • RTS Telex at IBC2011

    RTS Telex at IBC2011

  • Telecast at IBC2011

    Telecast at IBC2011

  • Mission Critical IP Transport Solutions from MediaLinks at NAB 2017

    Mission Critical IP Transport Solutions from MediaLinks at NAB 2017

  • Video Transport over IP from MediaLinks at NAB 2017

    Video Transport over IP from MediaLinks at NAB 2017

  • Live Sports Broadcast Commentator from Glensound at NAB 2017

    Live Sports Broadcast Commentator from Glensound at NAB 2017

  • DALET SportsPack at NAB 2015

    DALET SportsPack at NAB 2015

  • LiveMedia Server and Live Xpert from 3D Storm at NAB 2017

    LiveMedia Server and Live Xpert from 3D Storm at NAB 2017

  • Dejero at IBC 2016

    Dejero at IBC 2016

  • Vitec Digital Signage at NAB 2016

    Vitec Digital Signage at NAB 2016

  • 3D Storm at IBC 2015

    3D Storm at IBC 2015

  • MultiDyne Products at NAB 2014

    MultiDyne Products at NAB 2014

  • Studio Technologies at NAB 2014

    Studio Technologies at NAB 2014

  • Clear-Com ProGrid at NAB 2014

    Clear-Com ProGrid at NAB 2014

  • Clear-Com HelixNet Partyline at NAB 2014

    Clear-Com HelixNet Partyline at NAB 2014

  • Dalet at NAB 2014

    Dalet at NAB 2014

  • Haivision at NAB 2014

    Haivision at NAB 2014

  • NewTek TriCaster at BVE 2014

    NewTek TriCaster at BVE 2014

  • Glensound on BroadcastShow LIVE at IBC 2013

    Glensound on BroadcastShow LIVE at IBC 2013

  • Primestream on BroadcastShow LIVE at IBC 2013

    Primestream on BroadcastShow LIVE at IBC 2013

  • Stream UK on BroadcastShow LIVE at IBC 2013

    Stream UK on BroadcastShow LIVE at IBC 2013

  • Polecam talk high speed on BroadcastShow LIVE at IBC 2013

    Polecam talk high speed on BroadcastShow LIVE at IBC 2013

  • Dalet at IBC 2013

    Dalet at IBC 2013

  • i-Movix Slow Motion and D-Flicker at IBC 2013

    i-Movix Slow Motion and D-Flicker at IBC 2013

  • Multidyne SilverBack, BullDog and Spider at IBC 2013

    Multidyne SilverBack, BullDog and Spider at IBC 2013

  • ChyronHego Paint at IBC 2013

    ChyronHego Paint at IBC 2013

  • BroaMan at NAB 2013

    BroaMan at NAB 2013

  • Quantel Enterprise sQ at NAB 2013

    Quantel Enterprise sQ at NAB 2013

  • TSL Products at BVE 2013

    TSL Products at BVE 2013

  • Sonifex at NAB 2012

    Sonifex at NAB 2012

  • Glensound at NAB 2012

    Glensound at NAB 2012

  • The Vision Charity at BVE North 2011

    The Vision Charity at BVE North 2011

  • Petrol at IBC2011

    Petrol at IBC2011

  • Riedel Communications on BroadcastShow LIVE at IBC 2013

    Riedel Communications on BroadcastShow LIVE at IBC 2013


Related Shows
  • Bubble and Squeak: Live and Loud from Monday at IBC 2013

    Bubble and Squeak: Live and Loud from Monday at IBC 2013


Articles
Shedding Light on the Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera 4k BMCPP4K
Garth de Bruno Austin “What is it about light that has us craving it?” Is the question asked in the opening seconds of Garth de Bruno Austin’s latest short, The Colour of Light. Exploring this natural, human need as well as our innate desire to control it, Garth’s film showcases everyday people going about their lives in differing degrees of luminance, whether that be an artificial streetlight or a natural morning sunrise.
Tags: iss134 | blackmagic | cinema camera | 4k | cpp4k | Garth de Bruno Austin
Contributing Author Garth de Bruno Austin Click to read or download PDF
Using Wireless Transmission
Jeremy Benning Wireless acquisition is a staple of live sports, entertainment and reality shows where cable free capture permits shots not previously possible, for health and safety reasons, and gives the camera-operator greater artistic licence to roam. The same is increasingly true of narrative drama where cinematographers are keen to work handheld or Steadicam where that helps tell the story. Any equipment which frees their movement and time by being lighter, easier to use and reliable in performance is going to tick a lot of boxes.
Tags: iss134 | wireless | 4k | transmission | Jeremy Benning
Contributing Author Jeremy Benning Click to read or download PDF
Accelerated Workflows with eGPU
Mike Griggs From the UK’s National Trust to magazine publishers to manufacturers, digital content creator Mike Griggs has a wide and varied portfolio of clients for whom he creates 3D art, motion graphics and multimedia exhibits. A typical day might involve sampling birdsong near Virginia Woolf’s country estate or creating 3D animations for VR. To keep on top of these demands, Griggs wanted to take the full power of the GPU computing revolution on the road.
Tags: iss134 | sonnet | egpu | amd | post production | editing | Mike Griggs
Contributing Author Mike Griggs Click to read or download PDF
An Obituary to Timecode
Bruce Devlin - new A stoic and persistent character that stubbornly refused to change with the times, Timecode has finally passed on, but no-one has noticed. A long-lasting industry veteran, Timecode was brought into this world at an uncertain date in the late 1960s due to the needs of analogue tape workflows and the demand for synchronisation between audio and video devices. A joint activity between SMPTE and the EBU led to the work on Time and Control codes starting its journey to standardisation in the early 1970s.
Tags: iss134 | timecode | smpte | ebu | edit | Bruce Devlin - new
Contributing Author Bruce Devlin - new Click to read
The Wireless Way to 4k
JP Delport DTC’s AEON group of products have been specifically designed for the 4K market. We encode with the more efficient HEVC algorithm, which means we are taking a 12G signal and compressing it to a bitrate that can be managed over an RF link. So what makes this a leading idea in the 4K revolution?
Tags: iss134 | wireless | 4k | transmission | JP Delport
Contributing Author JP Delport Click to read or download PDF