Dubai Media Incorporated (DMI) has invested in an advanced RF network for its wireless camera operations, which is enabled by VISLINK’s Cellular diversity technology in the Gulf region. The deployment brings immediate cost savings to the state-backed broadcaster, which is responsible for the live broadcast of several events in Dubai.
The city-wide wireless camera solution was installed by VISLINK and comprises a wireless camera system which transmits low power signals to a portable repeater system. This can be rigged on a building, car, boat or helicopter as required. This then re-transmits the signal at high power to the diversity receive system at the Dubai World Trade Centre and back to the DMI studios. DMI can use any standard professional broadcast camera fitted with the LINK L1500 transmitter operating at 7GHz.
Speaking about the benefits of the technology, Mather Al Ali, Vislink’s general manager for the Middle East and North Africa stated: “DMI is the first broadcaster in the Middle East to benefit from this technology. The equipment that is installed has huge potential for the region. It can be upgraded to HD in future through a simple onsite software licence key. The system allows DMI to cover most of the city with a live high quality contribution link through a simple wireless camera. Indeed the wireless camera does not even need to have a line of sight to the fixed receive site. The technology offers unparalleled operational and total cost of ownership benefits to the users which we believe will allow for more live coverage resulting in greater viewer market share.”
The traditional way to set up such a broadcast requires several engineers to operate antennas and dishes and carries the risk of losing the video signal because of human error. In contrast, the VISLINK Cellular Diversity solution is easy to use. The receiver covers an area within a certain radius of the antenna. Within this area, a camera operator can move around freely with the camera and the signal will be received at the centre. The concept uses a feature of COFDM wireless technology that enables digital signals to bounce off the surfaces of tall buildings in the City Centre, and reach the receiver even if there is no direct line of sight.
Hassan Chahine, chief technology officer at DMI stated that the broadcaster used the technology to cover several events in the emirate including Burj Khalifa, the world’s tallest tower.
“We acquired the system because we could see that it would enable us to capture live events directly from the streets of Dubai without using much effort or resources to set up prior to going live. We were impressed with the power and reliability of the system following its deployment for some high-profile events. The VISLINK solution enables us to capture live pictures in a short interval of time that would not otherwise be possible,” he added.