As a forward-thinking technology leader, MediaHub has successfully grown and diversified the list of services it provides to the Australian and international broadcast industries. Recently it won the tender to build a new headend for the WIN television group and for the project’s key products and Systems Integration (SI) component it partnered with Magna Systems and Engineering.
MediaHub Chief Digital and Information Officer, Simon Scott, explained, “MediaHub were looking for specific technical requirements in terms of device footprint, sustainability and feature set. Magna’s product range offered these key features and more. In addition, MediaHub engaged Magna’s excellent SI services for the system build.”
The new WIN headend is used to deliver all of the company’s channels to viewers at home. It is already on-air in various parts of Australia, with the remainder of markets going live during February and March 2023.
All signals are processed in the IP domain, either SMPTE 2022-6 uncompressed as the input to the compression system or SMPTE 2022-2 Transport Stream over IP compressed as the internal signals within the headend, then at the final hand off stage converted to ASI for distribution by the transmission provider.
MediaHub’s requirements were comprehensive and included a small footprint and high-density IP to ASI gateways and SFN devices, an IP monitoring platform, compliance logging platform and the highest quality SI services.
Scott continued, “Magna provided a turnkey offering around various parts of the glue required for the new headend project. Magna’s SI team also performed the physical build of the entire project including the compression system at two different data centres.”
In total Magna provided Dell IT infrastructure and servers, EVS Neuron SDI to IP Gateways, an Appear XC and X10 series platform for SFN MIP insertion and IP to ASI adaption, a TAGVS Multiviewer, BridgeTech monitoring probes, Actus compliance logging, Birddog NDI to HDMI converters and Magna’s full set of professional SI services.
Scott added, “Magna provided a project manager who directed and oversaw various cabling installers. Their SI service included technical CAD drawings for the project, as well as performing various design tweaks to accommodate the different requirements in the two data centres. Magna also held regular progress meetings, managed the install timelines and provided all the required install documentation for the project.”
According to Scott he has had only positive feedback about the results achieved by Magna adding, “Magna’s team was great to deal with. They were able to assist with many parts of the overall solution with their wide product range and able to assist with the project on a holistic level including the SI services. This simplified the process immensely for MediaHub enabling us to deliver many technologies in the best way possible to and for the client.”
Magna’s technology offering aligns closely with MediaHub’s technology vision, providing best of breed solutions that are not only feature rich but low footprint, as either COTS IT or bespoke hardware.
Scott said, “Other solutions offered required multiple racks of 1RU equipment, but with Magna’s assistance we managed to facilitate the same in 2 x 1RU devices. This not only simplified the solution but provides a number of benefits including lower power usage and smaller system footprint. Bearing in mind the solution for 260 channels fits within two IT racks for the whole of the compression headend – previously 12 racks with the last technology generation – it is an amazing achievement for both MediaHub, our compression vendor Ateme and the many Magna product offerings we used.”
The new headend solution is also future-proofed and ready for UHD, HEVC, DVB-T2 and other similar upcoming requirements.
Simon Scott concluded, “Magna’s team ‘just work’. Whether it was Alan, Dave, Tim or Paul, all of them assisted at various stages through the project and all have proven invaluable in assisting the MediaHub team, led by Anthony Colquhoun, to successfully deliver this major project for MediaHub and our client.”