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OMNEO Network by Ralph Strader I n September 2011 Bosch Communications Systems announced its OMNEO networking technology – generating significant interest in the industry. The two-part standard will provide both programme transport and system control for professional media networking applications. TV- Bay spoke to Ralph Strader, RTS’ Business Line Manager for CCS, on OMNEO and its significance for the broadcasting business. Why are digital media networks becoming more and more important? For two main reasons. First, if designed properly, they allow plant communications infrastructure to be used for multiple purposes: the same “pipe” can carry audio, video, control, and other needed signals. This reduces costs of materials and installation. Second, if designed to public standards, media networks allow customers to select equipment based on features and value, rather than confining them to proprietary closed solutions from single vendors. A lot of users shy away from building a media network – they think the technology is too complex. What would you tell these sceptics? Today, three factors are making networks easier to install and own. The first is that users are becoming more and more familiar with networking technology. Ten years ago, very few people would have understood the concepts of DHCP, TCP/IP, wireless routers, and so on. Now, most people have been exposed to these concepts to some degree, even if only through their home Wi-Fi and entertainment systems. Secondly, suppliers of the common hardware such as switches and routers have made great strides in making basic network infrastructure “plug and play”. Thirdly, the availability of trained network professionals is much greater than before, thanks mainly to high-quality network technology training programs available from the computing industry. What is OMNEO exactly? OMNEO is a Bosch media network architecture that combines signal transport and system control standards to form a complete media network solution that allows multichannel audio distribution and full remote control and monitoring for connected devices. What makes OMNEO unique? OMNEO is the only open standards based media network architecture in the world that supports the entire range of professional applications, from the smallest to the largest, with full signal transport and remote control capability, and with reliability sufficient for mission-critical applications. Other architectures address aspects of these challenges, but only OMNEO addresses them all in an integrated offering. We believe that OMNEO is unique in offering a strategic, future- proof media networking solution that retains the ease of use that people have come to expect from Ethernet networks. Other existing systems are based on Ethernet layer 2 and are confined to single sub-nets. OMNEO is fully layer 3 TCP/IP compliant and can span multiple sub-nets across wide areas. For whom is OMNEO suitable? OMNEO is suitable for any professional audio networking application. If offers very low latency (< 2 msec typical), high-resolution audio, (uncompressed 48 kHz / 24 bit), and precise synchronization (< 1 µSec error) to meet current professional standards. The design supports sample rate expansion to 96 kHz, and, for lower 68 | TV-BAY MAGAZINE TV-BAY071NOV12.indd 68 06/11/2012 18:10