The author is general manger for Ringnet.
BUDAPEST — Budapest is a city involved in European sports events.
Antenna Hungária is a member of the European Broadcast Union and one of the largest audiovisual service companies in Hungary. It has extensive facilities and highly qualified personnel to provide production services in Hungary for customers in radio, television and telecommunications.
Antenna Hungária has a large fleet of OB vans and recently it was the designated host broadcaster for the European Men’s and Women’s Water Polo Championships. This competition was held in Budapest’s Duna Arena from Jan. 14 to 26 with the participation of 16 countries: Germany, Croatia, Slovenia, Spain, France, Georgia, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Malta, Montenegro, Netherlands, Romania, Russia, Serbia and Turkey.
To be able to offer the highest broadcast quality audio for the unilateral commentary signals from the event, Antenna Hungária chose AEQ’s Phoenix Alio portable IP audio codecs. Hungarian Integrator systems’ integrator Ringnet supplied five units to service fully equipped commentary positions for the Rights-Holding Broadcasters at this edition of the championship.
The commentary service includes technical support to the RHBs, provided by Antenna Hungária in its role as host broadcaster. Such services usually involve operational and communication issues. AEQ, in turn, supported Antenna Hungária whenever required.
Several top-level broadcasters from Serbia, Croatia, Malta and Greece have taken up this practice. The links are mostly done by RTP protocol, and some broadcasters register the codecs on their own SIP server as an additional means of ensuring the link.
Antenna Hungária said the AEQ Phoenix Alio was effective in simple and flexible use and operation for the sports coverage. It is also able to cover other types of events such as concerts thanks to its stereo signal transmission capability. The broadcaster also uses it to broadcast political and social events.
Alio can be controlled remotely from an app, which allows it to be handled by inexperienced users. It is sometimes given to journalists for remote reporting and guest appearances in programs via public internet connections. The Alio is controlled from the station. It has a “help” button for requesting remote technical support.
Alio is ideal for sports broadcasting. First, it can work with two independent full-duplex circuits, one for program and one for coordination. Also, because it has equalization for the microphones, it can mix the international stereo sound. Furthermore, its compact and solid design optimizes it for use outdoors with users and equipment renters, who might not always be careful with the equipment.
To interface with broadcasters in other countries, Alio can connect to other codecs from most manufacturers thanks to the SIP communications protocol (N/ACIP Tech 3326 EBU standard). This avoids requiring visiting broadcasters having to send their own equipment to events.
When connecting Alio to another AEQ codec, users can take advantage of an exclusive set of tools that makes the establishment of communication and the control of the unit a simple task, including SIP and IP (RTP) connectivity, with a simplified connection tool called Smart RTP.