IBC 2012: Evertz Offers Updates on Launch of Dreamcatcher Replay System

Evertz made a big splash at the NAB Show in April with the announcement of Dreamcatcher, a replay system the company said will “change the way replay is done.” But, with only minimal specifics and a scheduled release in first quarter 2013, Evertz’s announcement of its entrance into the replay market traditionally ruled by EVS was little more than a tease. As a result, IBC attendees were eager for details during Evertz’s press conference Friday morning, and that is exactly what they got.

According to Evertz Director of Product Marketing Mo Goyal, Dreamcatcher is currently in beta trial at “five or six” sites throughout North America. In addition, Dreamcatcher replay will be used during a live sports telecast for the first time at a yet unnamed event in the U.S. on Sept. 8.

“We are revolutionizing replay,” Goyal said. “We are not just building another, better version of the competitors out there. We have created an architecture that is scalable and flexible. We looked at improving the way that workflow is done, getting better production value, interoperability, and removing the need for specialized operators and therefore lowering the overhead cost. We have taken a totally different approach to replay.”

At IBC2012 in Amsterdam this week, attendees are getting the first look at Evertz’s initial standalone Dreamcatcher replay unit. The 2RU, eight I/O device features a familiar controller and built-in multiviewer and more than 70 hours of HD storage. Although the control interface will be familiar to any operator with experience in traditional replay devices, Evertz plans to evolve the unit into a more touchscreen-oriented UI (similar to the VUE user interface for the MAGNUM live-production-control system) in the future.

“Day one, we are starting with a familiar controller,” said Goyal. “We understand that the marketplace is looking for a new player in this space, but we also realize that you have a lot of experienced operators out there that are familiar with these tools. This is just the first controller interface, though. If you look at the possibility that VUE brings, you’ll see where we are planning on migrating to.”

With Dreamcatcher officially introduced in Europe, Evertz is still on track for a general release of the product in first quarter 2013.

Although the Dreamcatcher announcement was the biggest news from Evertz regarding the live-sports-production market, a company with a product catalogue as extensive as Evertz’s obviously has much more in store at its booth.

Chief among these additional highlights is the new 3480STX adaptive-bitrate transcoder. With multiscreen delivery dominating the IBC buzz this year, the 3480STX real-time transcoder promises to receive plenty of attention from attendees looking to distribute content over cable, IPTV, over-the-the-top boxes, and the Web. It accepts an MPEG-2/H.264 input and will produce an ABR H.264 output (IDR-aligned, multiple profiles). IT also provides streaming outputs for Apple HLS, Microsoft Live Smooth Streaming, Adobe Flash, and MPEG-DASH.

Evertz is also highlighting what it calls the control room of the future, which combines its Mediator content management, VUE user interface, and VistaLINK PRO monitoring and control products into an end-to-end solution designed to allow broadcasters and playout facilities to deliver multiple channels while cutting costs. Combining the three platforms enables end users to control the entire video ecosystem, from cameras and ingest to servers to signal processing to routing to master control to transmission.

In addition, Evertz is showcasing new features for its MAGNUM live-production solution, including media-transport module, integrated tally, advanced event scripting, time control, and unified naming. In addition, the company has introduced new widgets for MAGNUM’s VUE customizable user interface.

Among other Evertz highlights at IBC2012:

  • The 3080IPX as a solution for IP transport using 1GbE or 10GBE network interfaces
  • Introduction of several contribution solutions
  • Expansion of its Bulk Optical Conversion line with the 3505FR
  • Introduction of the 7867VIPM series of multiviewers
  • Evertz’s extensive work at the Olympics, which included more than 20 routers being used at the London IBC by various broadcasters and integrators
  • Presteign Charter’s selection of Evertz core routing and terminal equipment.