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Thread: NDI Spark Q & As

  1. #1
    NewTek Engineering ACross's Avatar
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    Wink NDI Spark Q & As

    I've seen a few questions on different forums and thought I'd answer a few confusions here.

    Q. Does this require app XYZ to be upgraded to NDI v3.0.
    A. No. NDI Spark and the PTZ1 will work with NDI applications that where compiled with NDI V2 and later. I've personally tested it on most apps and have not found any that do not work (and we'll fix it if they do not).

    Q. Does this require some crazy wifi bandwidth.
    A. NDI Spark uses 10-15MBit/s in the high bandwidth mode. There are medium and low bandwidth modes that allow you to use less bandwidth if you want. You could use this for remote production on a wired connection as well. Using a PTZ1 camera you could get remote PTZ control with audio, video, tally.

    Q. Is wi-fi video important ?
    A. YES YES YES. Do you remember when your local network was all hard-wired ? Now you can carry your laptop and phone around without a wire attached. The moment you can do the same thing with video it changes everything. This might actually be the biggest revolution here actually ... wireless video into almost all computer production software. There are some risks and downsides of Wifi but having used it myself it is game changing. Your laptop is still faster wired than wireless, but the benefits of freedom to move are so big that most laptop vendors no longer even have a wired connection.

    Q. Is that uncompressed ?
    A. No, like NDI ... NDI|HX is compressed but uses long GOP compression to get much more bits into the same bandwidth. There is slightly higher latency (about 30ms higher) as a result, but the trade-off is the ability to use wireless and have remote production. The benefits of being able to move video on existing networks is so big that we believe that any product should take advantage of the incredibly compression advances made in the last 10 years to do more today. You can choose to do ~3 streams on 3G on a 10Ge connection (and require lots of expensive network equipment) or 10+ on 1Gbe ... NDI chooses the second and allows you to move video around your network and the world quickly and easily today. Lets be honest, if you want uncompressed video, use SDI ... the reason for using IP is the flexibility it gives you which simply cannot be underestimated; anyone who has used an NDI workflow will never go back.
    Another way to think about this, how many people's cameras capture uncompressed ... A 12MPixel camera (like the iPhone) would take 37Mb(!) an image, we all use compression and have about 3Mb an image which we can then email, save thousands of on drives, etc...

    Q. Can this record ?
    A1. Yes, NDI Spark can record to an SD or USB card (so its an in field recorder if you want). It has a web based control page so you can even set it up on your phone.
    A2. NDI Video monitor will also allow you to record to your local computer directly. This is controllable via the NDI V3 SDK so any app can implement ISO recording this way off any number of Spark devices. You can run 10 copies of Video Monitor and record them all on a PC if you want. (Oh and the new video monitor makes this much easier as well because it remembers the saved location of multiple copies allowing you to build your own "multiviewer layouts").

    Q. How does tally work ?
    A. It will work with any NDI applications that send tally messages. All existing applications should work without change. I've tested quite a few of the ones out there and they work on both PTZ1 and the Spark.

    Q. Audio, Video, pass through.
    A. It supports digital and analog audio with pass through. It has video pass through as well.

    Q. Will this work with TriCaster systems that are not 3G
    A. Yes. Even if you connect a 3G signal to the Spark it will work with all TriCaster systems. The TC software will specially detect this and handle it efficiently. TriCaster has also been updated to support NDI PTZ cameras without any separate setup, if you select one on an input then it is controllable.

    Q. I see mention of Skype, Goto meeting, etc...
    A. All NDI|HX devices come with what is ultimately "NDI Transmit 2.0" which allows any of their sources to be fully integrated into any windows application that supports video cameras. This supports full 3G so your camera or HDMI input just became a full 1080p60 way to get video across Skype (etc...)

    Q. How does the image quality compare with "regular NDI" ?
    A. The image quality of NDI|HX is the same or better than "regular NDI". Our target as and remains that all versions of NDI are visually lossless and that in all cases any version is indistinguishable from the original. If there was a case in which this was not the case we would consider it as a bug and make sure we resolve it.

    Q. Does Spark support multicast ?
    A. Yes, Spark does. Think about the benefits with wireless !

  2. #2
    NewTek System Integrator PIZAZZ's Avatar
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    Absolutely amazing
    Jef Kethley
    PIZAZZ
    www.pizazz.com

    Using:
    All models of TriCasters + 3Play, IPSeries
    Panasonic UB300 4k cams
    Tactical Fiber/converters, SDI2NDI converters, NDI-Viewfinder, and NDI2HDMI

  3. #3
    Registered User cuspclub's Avatar
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    Amazing technology here! Couple of quick questions...
    How does the Spark pass on PTZ control to the new NewTek PTZ1? Also, can it also pass IP control to a Panasonic UE70 somehow?
    Is there someway to tie in a Partyline style intercom into the Spark also? Imagine no cables to each camera position.

    Thanks,
    Nick
    Nick Nokes

    Gear used:
    Tricasters (460, 455, 300)
    Timewarp TW-42
    Cameras (Sony NX5U's, Panasonic PTZ's)

  4. #4
    'the write stuff' SBowie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cuspclub View Post
    How does the Spark pass on PTZ control to the new NewTek PTZ1?
    It doesn't. I think you might have this a little confused. PTZ1 does not require a Spark unit between it and the network. Rather, PTZ1 connects directly to your network, which in turn handles all signalling - tally, control, a/v.

    Quote Originally Posted by cuspclub View Post
    Also, can it also pass IP control to a Panasonic UE70 somehow?
    Spark provides either an SDI or HDMI (depending on model) to the camera. Neither of these carries PTZ control information back to the camera. Once Panasonic releases AW-UN70, it would work similarly to PTZ1 in this respect. A single network connection to the camera would pass a/v from the camera to the network, and PTZ control back to the camera.

    Quote Originally Posted by cuspclub View Post
    Is there someway to tie in a Partyline style intercom into the Spark also?
    As far as I know, there are currently no NDI intercom solutions, but I've little doubt they're on someone's roadmap.
    --
    Regards, Steve
    Forum Moderator
    ("You've got to ask yourself one question ... 'Do I feel lucky?' Well, do ya, spammer?")

  5. #5
    Registered User cuspclub's Avatar
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    Ok, that makes sense. Thanks for the info.
    Nick
    Nick Nokes

    Gear used:
    Tricasters (460, 455, 300)
    Timewarp TW-42
    Cameras (Sony NX5U's, Panasonic PTZ's)

  6. #6
    Senior Video Specialist
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    Our good friend Jef from Pizazz has been blending Dante and NDI to handle coms you may want to give him a call.
    Zane Condren
    Senior Video Specialist
    NewTek Inc.
    new.tk/call

  7. #7
    Registered User cuspclub's Avatar
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    Thanks Zane. Yeah Jef is slick with Dante setups.
    Nick Nokes

    Gear used:
    Tricasters (460, 455, 300)
    Timewarp TW-42
    Cameras (Sony NX5U's, Panasonic PTZ's)

  8. #8
    UniSon Gordon's Avatar
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    Spark and NDI latency?

    Quote Originally Posted by ACross View Post
    There is slightly higher latency (about 30ms higher) as a result...
    Slightly higher than what? Is that the total latency of the SPARK? How does this compare to the latency of the NewTek NDI PTZ camera?

    (30 ms is about 1 frame, (at 30 fps), which is good for anything other than IMAG where minimizing latency at every step counts.)

  9. #9
    'the write stuff' SBowie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gordon View Post
    Slightly higher than what?
    I think Andrew means 'as compared to standard NDI', which is under a frame in latency. At a glance, I think you're looking at something between 1 and 2 frames with NDI|HX, but suspect there may be some variance by device, mfr., etc.
    --
    Regards, Steve
    Forum Moderator
    ("You've got to ask yourself one question ... 'Do I feel lucky?' Well, do ya, spammer?")

  10. #10
    UniSon Gordon's Avatar
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    Thanks Steve.

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