At IBC2013, Snell is launching a significant expansion of its industry-leading ICE channel-in-a-box, including two all-new models. The core ICE product now offers even greater functionality and horsepower in a more compact footprint. The new systems include ICE-LE, a low-cost 1U version that offers a streamlined feature set for smaller operations or simple video server refresh projects; and ICE SAN, which provides large-scale shared content storage to give multiple ICE units instant access to media.
"Broadcasters are under pressure like never before to deliver more channels with fewer resources. By bundling the entire playout chain into a single, cost-effective channel in a box, ICE provides an ideal solution for media operations of all sizes," said Karl Mehring, senior product manager at Snell. "And now, with a choice of two versatile ICE systems plus ICE SAN, we're offering our customers a broader range of options for deploying channel-in-a-box capabilities that are totally fit for purpose. With greater channel density, more functionality, and more horsepower in a smaller box, ICE directly addresses our customers' growing requirement to broadcast more complex channels while saving space and minimizing power usage."
Each ICE unit features multiple inputs and outputs with two DVEs and eight keyers per channel mixer, as well as routing and mixing functions, SD and HD format conversion, audio processing capabilities, and closed-caption/subtitle support. Despite a new, smaller form factor, the standard ICE system now offers twice the 2D or 3D graphics capabilities as before, for the same price as the previous configuration. Also, through the new version 4.0 software, ICE now offers powerful new features such as Nielsen audience-tracking capabilities, integrated loudness control for compliance with international regulations, and Variplay, an option that enables operators to speed up noncritical material to compress time and make space for more essential playout.
Occupying only a single rack unit, ICE-LE delivers the power of ICE technology at an exceptionally low price point, just 38,000 euros list price for four channels of playout. It comes complete with robust routing, mixing, audio processing, format conversion tools, and 2 TB of storage. The 2U version has the full ICE functionality, including advanced graphics, Dolby(R) E decoding and encoding, loudness control, Nielsen monitoring, and Variplay. In addition, the 2U ICE offers additional inputs and outputs and 3.6 TB of storage.
In partnership with Quantum, Snell has developed ICE SAN to address the media storage requirements of today's playout operations. ICE SAN uses the power of a storage area network (SAN) to centralize storage and streamline media workflows for multi-channel operations. The result is a less complex and costly operation that is guaranteed to deliver media when and where it is needed. ICE SAN is available in two versions: an enterprise model that offers premium levels of storage centralization and resilience, and a lower-cost option that provides high performance for smaller operations in which cost is a major factor.
More information about the ICE product family and other Snell solutions is available at www.snellgroup.com.