Omneon Supports New Panasonic HD Format

Omneon MediaPort, MediaDeck Compatible with AVC-Intra

As expected, server manufacturer Omneon formally announced support for AVC-Intra, Panasonic's new HD-camera format that uses MPEG-4 advanced compression, and Omneon is demonstrating it at the Inter BEE 2007 show in Tokyo this week.

Omneon created new MediaPort modules for its flagship Spectrum and lower-cost MediaDeck servers that will provide real-time encoding and decoding of HD material using the AVC-Intra codec, which encodes HD video at 50 or 100 megabits per second.

The new MIP-5600 line of MediaPorts -- which includes the MIP 5601 and MIP-5602 for the Spectrum system and the MDM-5601 for MediaDeck -- will also enable the direct transfer of AVC-Intra content from Panasonic P2 solid-state memory-card media into Omneon servers for editing and playout.

Nonlinear editing suppliers Apple, Avid and Thomson Grass Valley announced support for AVC-Intra, and their systems will be able to access the Spectrum or MediaDeck file systems to edit the content in place, reducing the need for lengthy transfers.

Omneon has been trying to expand the use of its servers into the news-production market, first supporting Sony's XDCAM HD MPEG-2 based HD format. At the IBC show in Amsterdam, Netherlands, it announced support for Panasonic's DVCPRO HD and said it was working to also handle AVC-Intra, which is rolling out in Panasonic's latest P2 camcorders.

The new MediaPorts, available in mid-2008, can be connected easily to existing Spectrum servers to add AVC-Intra functionality, Omneon said, and mixed with other Omneon MediaPorts for standard-definition within the same system. In most cases, a MediaPort can be added to an existing server while the system remains online.

“Our support for AVC-Intra reaffirms our commitment to deliver the HD capabilities that our customers require or will require,” said Geoff Stedman, vice president of worldwide marketing for Omneon, in a statement. “Omneon systems have been designed with the flexibility to address the changing HD and multiformat requirements of today’s facilities, and we have continually rolled out new format support as they are accepted by the industry. The addition of AVC-Intra to our portfolio carries on this tradition.”