RTL case study

RTL

RTL updates old analog system with a powerful Exterity digital IPTV solution

Within RTL in Hilversum, there was a need for the old CAI system to be replaced by a modern and digital IP video solution.

The old system was analog, not flexible and not scalable enough, so RTL contacted its system integrator HTC International who in turn called on the expertise of Intronics to recommend a suitable and complete replacement solution. RTL, like Endemol and Omroep Gelderland, was convinced of the strength of the Exterity IPTV system. Today, all incoming content on the editors’ floor of RTL News and RTL Z is received through the Exterity IPTV system and then distributed to individual clients within RTL.

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The Challenge

Hank van de Loo, Technical Manager at RTL, was looking for an IPTV system to distribute the television signals of different channels within RTL Hilversum.

A CAI system for transmitting audio and video signals was already present in the building, but had a number of disadvantages: the CAI system was not flexible and scalable enough to manage and distribute incoming content in a simple manner. Because the image signal was supplied and distributed via an analog system, the image quality was also not satisfactory. “The system used was outdated and the main wish was to have a better image quality. During my search for a suitable solution, I looked at the solution deployed at Endemol. They have been working with Exterity IPTV equipment for several years, to complete satisfaction”, Hank commented.

“Exterity has a unique receiver with a 4-port switch in its portfolio. Per port, you determine what network channel to connect, also known as VLAN tagging. This way, separated networks share physical hardware such as switches and wiring, which increases cost-effectiveness even more.”

The Solution

Following the visit to Endemol and after reading the Omroep Gelderland case study, RTL contacted Intronics via its system integrator, HTC International. After speaking with Intronics professionals, a solution using an Exterity IPTV system was specified.

“One of the advantages of the Exterity IPTV system is its scalability; you can easily expand it. Exterity ensures that the different incoming channels are combined in one unified format and distributed to the LAN in the required HD image quality”  said Ferry Korzinek of HTC International.

The Exterity IPTV system makes use of the existing infrastructure, the internal IP network (LAN). The wish was to keep the corporate network and content from the RTL Master Control Room separated, without using too much bandwidth. Fortunately, this proved no obstacle for Exterity. As Korzinek added, “Exterity has a unique receiver with a 4-port switch in its portfolio. Per port, you determine what network channel to connect, also known as VLAN tagging. This way, separated networks share physical hardware such as switches and wiring, which increases cost-effectiveness even more.

Because a multicast datastream is being used, bandwidth usage is reduced. One datastream coming from the server requires the same amount of bandwith, regardless of the number of clients that receive the data stream. A multicast stream uses the same amount of bandwidth compared to a single unicast datastream with the same content”.

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“One of the advantages of the Exterity IPTV system is its scalability; you can easily expand it. Exterity ensures that the different incoming channels are combined in one unified format and distributed to the LAN in the required HD image quality.”

Ferry Korzinek of HTC International
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The Result

All audio and video content is supplied from the RTL Master Control Room (MCR), such as news channels from all over the world, but also from individual correspondents via a live stream. The MCR is the spider in the web, from which signals are monitored and then sent to studios and editorial floors.

Thanks to the Exterity solution, all live content is available at the right workplace and individuals, while switching between the news channels is also possible. Management and speed of access to relevant content is a core part of the overall system and key to editors being able to create the perfect headline on the fly.

The complete installation of the solution was done by HTC International, with Intronics providing pre-sales advice, training and support with the configuration. During the implementation, Intronics remained involved by advising and making adjustments when necessary. Technical expertise is thereby constantly exchanged.

“Exterity has a unique receiver with a 4-port switch in its portfolio. Per port, you determine what network channel to connect, also known as VLAN tagging. This way, separated networks share physical hardware such as switches and wiring, which increases cost-effectiveness even more. Because a multicast datastream is being used, bandwidth usage is reduced. One datastream coming from the server requires the same amount of bandwith, regardless of the number of clients that receive the data stream. A multicast stream uses the same amount of bandwidth compared to a single unicast datastream with the same content”.

Ferry Korzinek

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