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Broadcast RF: DIY fibre extension system

The creation of its own fibre extension system for engineering a wireless camera arrangement is being discussed by Broadcast RF here at IBC, following its decision to make its own one in-house after failing to find a suitable commercial alternative.

The design brief included the following requirements: ability to operate over 500m of SMPTE fibre cable; option of using a single core of ST or E2000 fibre, with local battery or mains power; ability to carry RS485 data from base unit to remote unit for the camera data transmitter; and the ability to carry Ethernet connectivity for Wi-Fi based camera control systems.

The base unit created is 1U in height and half-width meaning two units can be mounted alongside each other in a standard 19-inch rack. The SMPTE connector can be moved to the rear panel of the unit if required. The remote unit is built into a standard waterproof case which doubles as a transit case for the antennas, filters, down-converters and cables. The base unit front panel display provides monitoring of the optical signal strength and internal temperature of the base unit.

The inbuilt RS485 data transport facility can be configured to suit Videosys, Link and Gigawave camera control systems and the data transmitter can also be powered from the remote unit via the SMPTE fibre.
Broadcast RF has 30 pairs of these units and recently deployed 26 of them at the FIFA World Cup in Brazil ­where they were used for both radio-camera and helicopter camera reception.