Routers and Switchers
Apr 5, 2013 1:43 PM, By Bennett Liles
The makers of modern routers and switchers seem to be on top of the challenge to make these devices increasingly feature-packed and control-system compatible, while at the same time expanding their ease of use. There is increasingly more going on behind the scenes in the chips with each model that enters the market, and the examples shown here demonstrate these trends.
The UT250-101 Under Table Matrix Switcher from Altinex is an 8x4 VGA computer video and audio matrix switcher that can direct and manage VGA video signals from multiple laptop computers and document cameras. The switcher provides eight VGA-UXGA computer video inputs and eight 3.5mm stereo inputs, and routes them to any of four outputs using its built-in, 16-button “Show Me” controller or RS-232 from a remote source such as the Altinex MultiTouch touchscreen panels. Any input can be switched to two or all four of the video outputs.
One of the more versatile presentation switchers from AMX is the Enova DVX-3155HD, which can function as a matrix switcher, scaler, A-to-D converter, twisted-pair transmitter, and amplifier with built-in audio processing. The unit can switch video in 10x4 and audio in 14x4 with the capability to send audio, video bi-directional control, and Ethernet up to 320ft. on one standard twisted-pair cable. It can accept RGBHV, component, S-Video, composite, HDMI/HDCP and DVI signals all on the same connector. Included is support for 3D and deep color.
Analog Way has recently introduced the Smart Matrix Ultra, a new multiscreen seamless switcher based on Analog Way’s new LiveCore platform. It can accommodate a number of different input video formats including six HDMI, nine DVI-D, three DisplayPort, 12 3G-SDI, and 12 universal analog. The included SFP Cage on the outputs is compatible with a large range of SFP optical modules. Two of the units can be linked for adding and sharing of outputs and inputs. The SmartMatriX Ultra can be controlled directly from its front panel or using web remote control software.
The AT-PRO3HD44M HDMI 4x4 matrix switcher from Atlona extends HDMI from sources up to 230ft. over Cat-6a cables at 1080p and 1920x1200, or 197ft. with Cat-5e/6 cables. The unit allows control of up to eight devices through IR remote control, RS-232, third-party IR control boxes, and the front panel. It also has digital audio S/PDIF loop-outs that allow audio distribution to distant devices. S/PDIF output supports PCM two-channel, Dolby 2.0, Dolby Digital 5.1, and DTS 5.1 digital audio formats. Also featured are programmable EDID memory presets.
Audio Authority markets the ADX-1616 as a matrix switcher capable of routing multiple audio sources to multiple zones with custom 10-band EQ control per zone and a low pass filter for adding subwoofers to zones. A variety of third-party control systems can be used with the ADX Series audio switchers connecting through Ethernet, IR, and RS-232. The 2RU unit also provides zone grouping and source/zone combinations and it can be set up and controlled using a PC via Ethernet, USB, or a serial interface.
Aurora Multimedia now incorporates HDBaseT Cat I/O cards on its second-generation Digital Extreme Matrix (DMX) switchers. The DXM-3232-G2 offers 1080p 60Hz transmission over Cat cable up to 600ft., and the HDBaseT Tx/Rx modules are remotely powered by the DXM units over the Cat cable. There is a wide range of input cards to accommodate video signal formats including fiber, composite, component, 3G/HD/SD SDI, and HDMI. Also featured is auto EDID learning and management for simple setup and operation and switching can be completely controlled on RS-232.
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