AV over IP describes the delivery of AV content over a standard Ethernet network, including 4K/60 video, audio, peripherals and control signals. It offers flexible installations that deliver even ultra HD quality with nearly instantaneous results. Even better, it’s relatively simple to integrate and operate once you learn the basics.
Because it is so versatile, AV over IP has quickly become the industry-standard for installations in both commercial and residential markets. Its adaptability allows integrators to expand systems on a port-by-port basis, with system size limited only by the network bandwidth. Virtual infrastructures can be created and rearranged with signal delivery assigned to point-to-point, point-to-multipoint and multipoint-to-multipoint configurations.
There are virtually no distance limitations, making it convenient and cost-effective to connect and access AV across the home or around the world. Lossless video resolutions and ultra-low latency levels only improve performance. Integrators can utilize existing network infrastructures, pay for additional ports as they need them, and eliminate excessive extension cabling. All this makes for a cost-effective and highly nuanced installation environment that can be easily configured and controlled from a smartphone or tablet.
It’s readily apparent that AV over IP has officially arrived. This year, AV over IP installations saw a year-to-year increase of 138% according to Futuresource Consulting. Likewise, AV matrix switch installations fell 3.4%. Futuresource predicts a compound annual growth rate of nearly 65% until 2021, when most installations will, by default, rely on an AV over IP infrastructure. Certainly, AV over IP is expected to dominate installations involving more than a handful of AV sources and screens. All this has been expected, especially since networking compression technologies have advanced along with the higher resolutions of video. Today’s networks have evolved to handle greater transmissions with nearly zero latency.
In light of the rapid rise of technological innovations in the Internet of Things arena, AV over IP is lined-up to become the status quo of most small and large-scale implementations in the AV world. It’s flexible and expandable, a fact that is particularly desirable when building video walls and mosaics. System size is limited only by network bandwidth. Virtual splitter and matrix arrangements can be reconfigured easily and with zero hardware adjustments. Content can be delivered, locally, regionally and even globally, instantly. These types of expandable infrastructures are convenient and cost-effective, eliminating cable-heavy installations using an (often pre-existing) Ethernet LAN infrastructure.
The ability to centrally manage the entire system from anywhere with a smart device or tablet is basically the cherry on a very effective, very accommodating cake. MuxLab is now refining its new mobile application that will offer smart control of AV over IP sources and displays with options like custom graphics of color-coded equipment for easy, instant identification. With the new app, users can manage the connectivity of any source to any display and create video walls. Users can easily manage multiple sites or zones using graphical floor plans with the touch of a finger, vastly simplifying the identification, control and access of even the most complex AV installations. Systems can also be configured with presets to handle repetitive or scheduled tasks, from virtual matrix switching to displays and video walls. Set-up is easy and requires a simple download to get started, available on both iOS and Android smartphones and tablets. It will be available in early 2018, and showcased at ISE in Amsterdam.