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Tech Roundup: Routers and Switchers 2022

With the wide variety of video and sound formats available today, content developers and clients need to meet all of them and the industry has responded. There has never before been such a wide range of capabilities in the devices used to get AV signals from point A to points B through Z and back. The entries here illustrate the various sizes and formats available to match the hardware to today’s needs and to missions of the future.

The AJA Video Systems KUMO 1616-12G compact 16×16 12G SDI router blends versatility with an easy learning curve and houses it all in a single rack unit device. It handles high resolution, high frame rate and deep color video formats while control is maintained through direct panel contact or on the network. A front panel USB port has been included for configuring IP addresses via AJA’s eMini-Setup software.

Customization and future proofing are main themes in the Altinex MT302-201 Multitasker with its 20-slot design in a 4RU rack space. The front panel LCD display provides a direct function monitor for the cards inside and the unit can be controlled with TCP/IP commands or through the web interface. Each internal card is referenced by its slot number. The various card types enable matrix switching, fiber optic transmission, stereo sound switching and more capabilities.

Audio, video and control are smoothly unified in the AMX Enova DVX-3266-4K 8×4+2 all-in-one presentation switcher. The 2RU device houses a 120W Crown DriveCore amplifier and adds audio processing by BSS and the latest dbx feedback suppression functionality. Its HTML5 Web Interface allows control over the unit’s 8 input channels and 8 output channels of IP audio. Operators can use DXLink twisted pair inputs and outputs to send and receive audio, video, bi-directional control, USB 2.0 and Ethernet to DXLink HDMI receivers and transmitters up to 100m away over one twisted pair cable.

If the need is for a 4K/60 multilayer video mixer and seamless presentation switcher, the Analog Way Eikos 4K is ready with its ten seamless inputs in multiple formats, two active HDMI outputs, dedicated multi-viewer output and three operational modes. There is also audio embedding/deembedding on all inputs and outputs. The foreground layer can show four simultaneous still images and the background layer has the same still image capability.

Maximum function in minimum space is what the A-Neuvideo ANI-16-4K60-S 18Gbps 16×16 HDMI matrix switcher provides along with unparalleled ease of use. Transmitting video resolutions up to [email protected] YUV 4:4:4 along with multi-channel digital audio, the unit gets signals to and from up to 16 sources and destinations. Control options include front panel buttons, IR remote, RS-232, LAN and Web GUI. The HDMI output ARC function supports audio extraction to a coaxial audio output on each channel.

The new Apantac 8×8 HDMI 2.0 UHD matrix switch with audio breakout allows users to independently distribute any of up to eight HDMI sources to any or all of eight HDMI displays. It is compliant with the HDMI 2.0 and HDCP 1.4/2.2 as well as HDR. It supports video resolutions up to UHD [email protected] (4:4:4). In environments such as churches, conference rooms, and broadcast control rooms where configuration time may be short, this switcher is ready to go with up to four easily recalled presets. Versatile control methods include RS-232 and an array of front panel buttons coordinated on the LCD display as well as IP control for web, telnet and TCP.

The Atlona AT-OPUS-68M provides HDBaseT outputs for transmission of HDMI, Ethernet, power, and control up to 330ft. along with independent audio matrix switching, all in a device that can be free standing or fit into a 2RU rack space. There is independent CEC display control to each output and there are an additional two HDMI outputs. All HDBaseT outputs remotely power OPUS-RX receivers via PoE. There is a variety of control methods including IR remote, front panel control, and GUI-based integrated web server.

For heavy duty, mission critical operation with substantial customization capability, the Aurora Multimedia the 4th Generation Digital Xtreme Series DXM-1616-G4 offers a card-based frame to house a full complement of multimedia input and output cards. These can be hot swapped and controlled through an integrated 5in. touch screen, web server, RS-232 port, and LAN interface. The system also provides advanced EDID, HDCP, and data handling capabilities.

Able to sense the user-specific configuration, the Black Box AVS-1600-R2 modular matrix switcher instantly recognizes each input/output card that is installed and provides comprehensive signal card compatibility. This device can handle a range of formats and convert each one to the desired output. Controlled on the front panel, IR, RS-232 and TCP/IP, the AVS-1600-R2 can use many combinations among its 12 I/O card slots and four additional output signal cards.

To give your multi-camera on-location web streaming event a professional look there is the BlackMagic Design ATEM Mini switcher with the ability to connect up to eight cameras or to add a computer as a web playback source. It is also capable of adding video effects such as picture-in-picture, wipes and dissolves. The USB webcam output works with any streaming software. The side panel accepts two microphone inputs and provides an HDMI program output.

Perfectly at home in a conference room, classroom boardroom or huddle room, the Blustream AMF41W handles AirPlay and Miracast from computers and mobile devices and there is an onboard WiFi hotspot that eliminates the complexity of setting up guest wireless networks. Also featured is a multi-viewing capability with configurable screen layouts and support for seven concurrent video signals. The unit provides four HDMI, AirPlay and Miracast inputs that are switched to a single HDMI output. A variety of control options includes a web GUI for simple control and configuration.

The Crestron HD-MD6X2-4K-E occupies a single rack space and it allows selection between six HDMI inputs sending the desired input source to two HDMI outputs. It conveys full HD 1080p, Ultra HD, 2K, and 4K video signals with support for HDCP, 3D, Deep Color, and high-bitrate 7.1 audio. The unit can be operated via front panel controls, a Web browser, or a Crestron control system. The signals are copy secure where a source device must issue a key before delivering an output signal. The switcher can be rack mounted or placed on a shelf.

Combining the features of a 4K multiViewer, presentation switcher and scaler, the DVIGear DVI-3580a handles multiple formats through seven inputs. Among them are four HDMI, two DisplayPort and one RGB/ YPbPr Analog (VGA) and supported resolutions extend to 4K/60p. There is input audio embedding along with de-embedded audio outputs. Sound output includes HDMI/ HDBaseT embedded audio, 8-channel (7.1) analog audio, and TOSLINK optical audio. Control is through front panel, IR, RS-232 or built-in web GUI.

The new Extron ISS 612 seamless switcher works with HDMI, DisplayPort and 12G-SDI signals on its 12 inputs. Its transition effects include cuts, wipes and dissolves viewable on program and preview outputs. For compatibility in a range of viewing environments the ISS 612 adds advanced Vector 4K scaling technology. Front panel, RS-232 and Ethernet are among the control methods. Matrix Mode adds automatic, seamless transitions to matrix switchers with HDMI outputs.

Where space is at a premium and four I/O switching is needed the FSR DVHMSW4K-44 can show any HDMI source on any or all of its HDMI outputs. There is also 4K to 1080p downscaling to allow compatibility between 4K and 1080p displays. This little unit can even be mounted on a wall and there are five control methods including front panel push buttons, IR remote, RS-232, IP Control and Web GUI. Rubber feet are included for desktop use.

The Gefen EXT-UHD600A-88 4K Ultra HD 600 MHz 8×8 matrix switcher can route eight 4K/60Hz 4:4:4 sources to any combination of up to eight 4K/60Hz 4:4:4 displays with video resolutions up to 4096 x 2160. The unit supports HDCP 2.2 and 1.4 as well as 7.1 channels of High Bit Rate digital audio. The audio de-embedders output 2 channel analog, 2 channel PCM, and up to 5.1 channels of Bitstream digital audio from each HDMI output.

Users have a very innovative tool in the new Hall Technologies HSM-44-UHD 4×4 matrix video switcher with its support for HDMI video resolutions up to [email protected]:4:4 in addition to PCM, Dolby, DTS, and HD sound. Multiple matrix routing configuration presets can be saved and recalled while if needed, HDMI outputs can also be blanked. The compact 1-RU enclosure has a front panel 2-line character LCD to show current configuration and allow operation of the presets. With these features, this new addition to the Genesis Digital Matrix series combines versatility, ease of use and minimum footprint.

For larger operations requiring room for expansion, the IDK FDX-S16 modular digital matrix switcher can be configured for up to 16 inputs and 16 outputs. For sound sources the audio can be converted between digital and analog as well as Dante audio network signals. Reliability is enhanced with redundant power supplies and there are alarms for voltage, fans, internal temperature and board failure. Remote control is done through RS232C and LAN ports.

The KanexPro HDMX42A-18G allows easy switching of four HDMI sources to two 4K displays. This model can extract the audio from any of the sources and outputs via optical Toslink or analog 2-channel audio formats and send it to an external sound system. It can also be installed in an environment with 4K and 1080p formats and switch between them. Content protection is preserved through HDCP 2.2 authentication. Small enough to fit anywhere, the HDMX52A-18G is perfect for home theater, conference rooms or classrooms.

For high end boardrooms and similar environments the Kramer Electronics VP-558 11×4 ProScale presentation scaler/matrix switcher has the ability to show four independent scaled images through HDMI and HDBaseT. Providing six HDMI inputs, four HDBaseT inputs, an analog VGA input, and a 4×1 USB switcher, the unit can deal with changing format technologies and long digital video transmission distances. Audio features include a microphone input, independent stereo audio outputs, a monitor output, an amplified speaker output, and audio DSP.

Multiview, seamless switching, and long distance digital video distribution through HDBaseT are all within the capabilities of the Liberty AV Solutions DL-PSMV62 multi-format presentation switcher. Inputs include HDMI, DP, & USB-C with integrated upscaling to 4K. The HDBaseT outputs can send video up to 40 meters for 4K and 70 meters for 1080p with the DL-HD70RX Digitalinx Series HDBaseT 70m receiver at the destination end.

For heavy duty mission critical applications the Lightware Visual Engineering MX2MFR24R-RF modular matrix switcher shows 4K UHD resolution at 60Hz while its twin power supply units make sure it stays up and running. It offers six slots for 4-port video input boards, six slots for 4-port video output boards and another four slots for low-speed (audio, GPIO, etc) I/O boards. On the sound side, there are four installable slots for Dante, ADC and DAC audio I/O boards, GPIO, USB and other options. The built-in web GUI allows configuration and there is device control via Ethernet.

The Marshall Electronics VMV-402-SH is a small device with big features including four inputs that can handle a combination of mixed formats and frame rates. There is simultaneous output of 3G SDI and HDMI along with an internal scaler that makes the variety of sources conform to these output formats. Control is done via front panel, Ethernet, USB or IR. Quad mode output has tallies, titles and borders or clean display and there is a front panel headphone jack to monitor embedded audio.

Larger, multi-format video source environments can use the Opticis OMM-1000 16×16 optical modular matrix switcher for DVI, HDMI, SDI, and DisplayPort interfacing operation. Physical configuration is accomplished through selection of four different I/O cards, each one of which has four I/O ports. The unit can be operated by front panel controls or through command codes on RS-232 and TCP/IP. With the addition of cards, the switcher can be reconfigured and scaled up to meet changing needs.

The ability to integrate IP and 4K UHD is a valuable asset and it’s the central theme to the Pesa Tiger FUSION IP/12G SDI video router and video distribution system. It supports SMPTE ST 2110 and single port, uncompressed 4K/p60 SDI video over single link 12G. The system offers modular SFP and coaxial cable 12Gbit/S SDI interface ports for handling all major signal formats. All major components, including input/output, matrix and control cards are easily accessed from the front.

The PureLink HDTools HTX II-8800 matrix switcher can route eight Ultra HD/4K sources to six remote destinations via HDBaseT using receivers sold separately as well as to two local destinations via HDMI. It also features a built-in independent audio matrix with volume, mute, and delay adjustment. HDR, ARC, CEC and smart EDID management are supported and there is 24V PoE on all HDBaseT ports. The 2RU unit can be controlled via front panel button, IR, RS-232, LAN and a Web GUI.

Featuring a modular chassis holding Hot-swappable 4-port I/O cards, the Rose Electronics UltraMatrix AV Pro can handle HDMI, HDBaseT, 3G-SDI, DVI, VGA, audio, and fiber optic formats in any combination. There is cross-point seamless switching from any input port to any output port, regardless of the signal format, through automatic built-in scaling and conversion. Sound and video can be switched independently. Control is done through the front panel buttons, IR, Ethernet or RS-232.

Now users can accomplish device control and 8×2 presentation switching with the RTI VXP-82. In addition it has bi-directional KVM functionality for HDMI or HDBaseT outputs and a built-in scaler that supports up to 4K/60Hz 4:4:4 8bit video output. The device feature is versatile with control of external devices via six routable IR ports, two RS-232 ports, three relays, three voltage triggers, and three voltage sense inputs. Included with the 2RU rack unit are rack ears with screws, power cord, Phoenix connectors, terminal blocks and RS-232 adapters.

The Snap One Binary B-520-MTRX230-8×8 HDMI matrix switcher powers its destination receivers over the cable through PoC and it can be control system operated on Ethernet, RS-232 control, and IR. Each output provides an HDMI out for local monitors, as well as an HDBaseT output for more distant displays. EDID settings can be configured using the included remote control or convenient PC configuration utility. Three EDID modes are provided for ultimate flexibility – Auto, Embedded and Learning. This product line can also be configured for 6×4+2 and 4×4 switching.

For versatility in a single rack unit device the Tekvox MV41+ offers sophisticated features including four HDMI inputs, each of which is equipped with autoscaling, one HDMI output, LINE and MIX audio inputs for audio embedding and mixing, and separate analog and optical (SPDIF) sound outputs. Users can view multiple sources simultaneously and there are sixteen pre-defined layouts and three window sizes, all of which are fully-customizable.

High end major routing operations are covered with the Thinklogical TLX1280 modular, non-blocking matrix switch which is capable of also routing video, audio and peripheral signals on multimode or single mode fiber as well as CATx cable. Scalable from 32 ports up to 1280 ports, the unit has partitioned and restricted switching that allows the router resources to be divided to support more than one network, and does not allow for switching between networks. All critical components are hot-swappable.

The tvOne Coriomaster 2 can handle massive multi-viewing and switching missions with ease, displaying up to 40 4K windows. The 4RU switcher provides a total of up to 56 outputs and it is infinitely customizable with the selection and combination of I/O cards. There are also optional dual redundant PSUs for mission critical applications. Digital, IP, broadcast, and legacy AV inputs can be combined to create mosaics, square walls, and expansive edge blends. 12 Gigapixels of design canvas allows three independent working areas for multiple walls.

Presenters can concentrate on their presentations using the WyreStorm SW-740-TX four input desk mounted 4K/60 HDBaseT presentation switcher with DSC compression, scaling and USB host. This model is capable of sending 5-play functions over a 328ft. line of Cat6 cable and running PoE to power a remotely located display. It can input two HDMI sources, a VGA analog source, and a signal on USB-C. The stereo audio input can be assigned to the VGA source or sent separately to the receiver.

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