Rosenberger OSI is to introduce a new high-speed fibre optic cabling system for 4K and beyond at IBC (stand 11.E39). The FieldCast system will support very high data rates over extended distances, and is claimed to be the world's first robust HD/4K/8K fibre optic solution that is available as an off the shelf product.
It is claimed to come in “at a break-through price point” and to overcome many of the traditional drawbacks of optical cabling, particularly cost and availability. To keep costs down it offers a simplified range, using widely compatible connectors and a straightforward colour coding system.
Coaxial copper cable connections seriously limit to the distances over which 4K video signals can travel. With 6Gbps signals the maximum distance without repeaters is about 60 to 70m, curtailing the practical use of 4K connectivity on location and even in the studio, which Rosenberger claims will become a real issue as Ultra HD starts to become a reality.
“Despite the shortcomings of copper, until now there has been a reluctance to go with fibre,” said Ab Vingerling of Rosenberger. “The variety of cable types, standards and connectors can be bewildering. FieldCast will finally help the technology to go mainstream. Now, using fibre will be little more complicated than buying and plugging in a coaxial copper cable. We expect this to be a truly ground-breaking moment.”
To help users grasp the concept and feel comfortable with fibre technology, the number of options has been drastically reduced. Broadcast and AV users are often ill equipped to specify the specification of every cable and connector they purchase, which is why FieldCast will be a very simplified, pre-configured range, using standard, sturdy connectors that can withstand extended use.
“Whether PC or APC polishing has been applied is meaningless and irrelevant to most users; it only serves to confuse the typical buyer. What our customers are interested to know is that FieldCast has been created to the highest specification, is compatible with broadcast and AV technology and is very attractively priced,” added Vingerling.
As Ultra HD acquisition is moving forward more quickly than predicted, Rosenberger believes the time is right for FieldCast. It supports both 6Gbps and 12Gbps SDI, while only fibre optics can deliver the speed and transmission distances that Ultra HD and 8K really needs.
Currently Rosenberger is building an active reseller channel for FieldCast. The EMEA territories are being handled by Mediamachine, in the Netherlands, with Holdan appointed to serve the UK and Irish markets.