Inavate + AJA Video Systems: Worlds collide

Robert Stacy from AJA Video Systems talks about how the event and production industries are moving forward as AJA develops systems and solutions that link all the moving parts.

Increasing attention has been drawn to the world of live events and production over the last two years. Restrictions and regulations meant that the traditional format of events, in which they were staged and produced in-person, was not possible and as always, users sought out technology to circumvent disruption.

Robert Stacy, general manager for Asia Pacific, AJA Video Systems, says: “There has been an acceleration in various approaches to production due to the pandemic, and people have been forced to look at events and production differently, because they can’t necessarily be done in the way that they used to. This has raised questions such as ‘what kind of infrastructure do we need to hold events in-house and from there, how do we share them more widely?’. Traditionally, fixed AV installations don’t have SDI infrastructure, but they do have 10Gig networks, which means that a new way to produce events was needed.”

Enter AJA with solutions to help end users. Stacy details: “There is a whole ecosystem of NDI products that has been developed over the past few years. Marry those with changes brought about by the pandemic and the fact that everyone has a 10Gig network or IP infrastructure and you have a completely new way to do events if you can build the solutions around it.”

He continues: “AJA has been trying to answer these needs for customers and we’ve done this in two ways, on the streaming side of things as well as on the conversion side of things. To be fair, corporations have some degree of legacy SDI equipment and SDI is still popular in the world of events and production and that investment cannot be thrown away. But NDI serves as a bridge between the world of SDI and the world of IP networks. AJA offers a product called BRIDGE NDI 3G which basically is a 16-channel 2K/HD or 4-Channel 4K, SDI to NDI or NDI to SDI converter or you can mix and match the two. Essentially it is a great tool for any facility exploring NDI that also has existing SDI equipment. And to assist with the streaming of content we have BRIDGE LIVE which is a multi-channel streaming solution with SDI transport to and from SRT, RTMP, RTMPs, or NDI networks.”

Showcasing the power of AJA solutions in action, Stacy shares how the manufacturer’s technologies are enabling events that meet the modern demands of users: “We work with a Japanese integrator and reseller, ASK Corporation, and as part of their business, ASK Corporation attends trade shows. As we know, participation in trade shows has been disrupted through the pandemic. But ASK Corporation was able to ‘attend’ a tradeshow 30 miles outside of Tokyo without investing much in the way of resources or manpower. By setting up two AJA BRIDGE LIVE units, one at the trade show and one at its offices, ASK Corporation was able to showcase product demos and content at the trade show from its office. The end results were that ASK Corporation was able to reduce its investment in booth space and reduce travel for staff, while still maintaining excellent engagement with tradeshow attendees.”

Stacy believes that the future of events is moving in this direction and that the new breed of technologies will be game changing for events.

He concludes: “NDI is like the Rosetta Stone of video signals. It allows for different protocols, platforms, and systems to speak to each other, but isn’t enough alone. AJA will continue to develop our solutions to ensure that developments like NDI can translate into real-world, tangible benefits for our users, bridging SDI, streaming and NDI in convenient and flexible 1RU gateway devices.”

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