Eric Bierstetel

Point-to-Point and Point-to-Multipoint Broadcasting
By Eric Bierstetel

LEIGHTRONIX has always been on the forefront of video encoding technology and one particular application that has seen significant growth is Point-to-Point broadcasting. At its most basic level, a Point-to-Point solution allows you to broadcast an event taking place in one location or “point,” transmit it over specific types of delivery networks, and air it live at another location or “point.”

More and more, customers are coming to us with applications for which an HD Point-to-Point solution would be ideal. Churches can use Point-to-Point to deliver sermons live from one room to another or even one church to another. Live events, such as concerts or sporting events, which have audiences in multiple locations, can utilize this technology, and universities who want to deliver the same, live lecture to multiple classrooms, halls, or campuses can take advantage of Point-to-Point broadcasting as well.

To accommodate these customers, LEIGHTRONIX has developed the IncodeX One H.264 digital video encoder. The IncodeX One encodes video of an event and efficiently delivers the resulting high quality video stream across a campus, community, country, or around the world in real time.

While a Point-to-Point broadcast seems similar to a live Internet stream, there are a few important differences to note. A typical live streaming solution utilizes the public Internet, which is inherently incapable of multicasting. A Point-to-Point broadcast uses a local area network (LAN), a wide area network (WAN), fiber network, or any combination of the three. With the use of these delivery methods, the IncodeX One is multicast enabled. A multicast is very similar to a Point-to-Point broadcast, but allows for multiple endpoints to receive the encoded video from the same origination point. With a Point-to-Point or Point-to-Multipoint broadcast you can confine the data to your network and determine which endpoint(s) the content is delivered to. This technology also enables you to utilize higher bit rates than would be impractical for live streaming, allowing you to broadcast a much higher quality video stream. The Point-to-Point or Point-to-Multipoint broadcast is ideal when you want to deliver a higher quality video broadcast and/or confine the data to your network and determine which endpoint(s) the content is delivered to.

The diagrams below illustrate how the IncodeX One Point-to-Point and Point-to-Multipoint solutions are utilized with each distribution method.

Point-to-Point

The diagram below shows a Point-to-Point broadcast over a Local Area Network (LAN), Wide Area Network (WAN), or fiber. The main application for which a Point-to-Point broadcast would be the most suitable solution is for a live event or situation that requires a live HD broadcast at a secondary location or endpoint.

LEIGHTRONIX Point-to-Point Diagram

Point-to-Multipoint via the Internet

For users without a suitable LAN or WAN network, the IncodeX One can also perform a multicast utilizing the Internet in conjunction with the LEIGHTRONIX content delivery network (CDN). In the diagram below the IncodeX One encodes the video and sends it to the LEIGHTRONIX CDN, which grants access to decoders at the desired endpoints and allows them to display the live video.

LEIGHTRONIX Point-to-Multipoint via the Internet

Point-to-Multipoint via a Private WAN

The IncodeX One is also capable of delivering content over a private WAN infrastructure. Utilizing a private WAN allows users to reach audiences at large distances. In the diagram below the IncodeX One is encoding the live video file and distributing it to multiple cities across the country with the use of multicast enabled switches and routers. For organizations with an extremely large WAN infrastructure, such as the military or companies with multiple campuses across the country, the IncodeX One allows them to multicast live content to any location(s) within their WAN.

LEIGHTRONIX Point-to-Multipoint via a Private WAN

Point-to-Multipoint via a Private LAN

The IncodeX One is also ideal for situations needing to utilize a private LAN. This method of transport is often used for a closed campus such as a university or corporation interested in distributing live video to multiple buildings or venues across their private LAN. In the diagram below you can see how the IncodeX One encodes the live feed of the sporting event and delivers it to multiple buildings across the campus where it is decoded by a high quality HD decoder.

LEIGHTRONIX Point-to-Multipoint via a Private LAN

 

Eric Bierstetel oversees daily operations at LEIGHTRONIX, where he has been employed for over 15 years. In his time with the company, Eric has been significantly involved with both customers and dealers, sales and system design, and has experience in almost every facet of the LEIGHTRONIX business.

 - July 22, 2013