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Demo of the month: ZeeVee ZyPer4K

ZyPer4K distributes and switches uncompressed 4K video, audio and control using industry-standard 10Gb Ethernet switch technology

The seventh edition of NEC’s Solutions Showcase, which took place recently at Vinopolis in London, featured solutions tailored to meet the specific needs of applications, presented within real-world scenarios.

One such solution was ZyPer4K, which distributes and switches uncompressed 4K video, audio and control using industry-standard 10Gb Ethernet switch technology to connect sources and displays. “ZyPer4K is a very different way, and we believe a better way, for distributing video. It enables you to send 4K video over a standard 10Gb IP network,” explained ZeeVee EMEA sales director, Rob Muddiman.

The ZeeVee stand at the Showcase was set-up with a demo rack consisting of four encoders and two decoders attached to a 12-port 10Gb network switch. There were also two 4K sources in the rack providing video into the two encoders.

Muddiman added: “We’re able to switch the sources through to the display, we’re able to do videowall capabilities as well as handling RS232, IR and transport 1Gb Ethernet to each of the end points.” The solution used at the NEC Showcase ran over fibre, however a Cat6A version was on show at InfoComm.

“A typical set-up is to have an encoder or decoder for each source or display and encoders/decoders can be plugged in anywhere on the network and be detected and managed by the API software. The ability for the system to run over a standard 10Gb IP network gives the user more flexibility as well as the built-in features, such as videowall and multiview capability,” said Muddiman.

It offers a highly scalable architecture with no real limit – evidenced in the fact that ZeeVee currently has a project with over 300 inputs and 300 outputs. There are also no ‘square’ switch limitations – a 24-port switch doesn’t have to be constrained to 12 x 12, it could be 3 x 21 or 6 x 18, for instance.

Plug and play

The user interface is configured using ZeeVee’s API, which sits between the hardware and any control. This minimises the customisation required and gives the solution plug-and-play capability. The control panel at the Showcase was based on Windows; ZeeVee subsequently launched a full HTML-based platform at InfoComm. The software supports third-party control systems or applications such as AMX and Crestron.

An advantage of ZyPer4K over other matrix switchers is its scalability and that it’s faster to deploy. It is also cost effective, particularly when used with 12 or more ports, combined with the fact that it uses off-the-shelf Ethernet switches. There is also a fast switching mode, which is under 30 minutes end to end, and Genlock mode, which according to ZeeVee takes latency down to a few microseconds.

Potential uses include facilities or campuses that have the need to switch multiple digital sources using existing fibre infrastructure to multiple discreet displays. ZyPer4K also offers the ability for use in point-to-point configuration to encode a 4K video source across a dedicated fibre connection to a display up to 30km away.

ZyPer4K began shipping in Q2 2015 with the first encoders and decoders supporting fibre cabling. As of Q3, a version supporting copper (twisted pair) cabling has also been available.

Elsewhere at the event, ZeeVee used older technology –its coax-based encoder/modulators and decoders – to take video from cameras in each of the 11 Showcase halls and display it on two videowalls.

Find out more about ZeeVee video distribution