Broadcast Pix said it has begun shipping the BPswitch FX4 and FX6 3RU live production switchers. They are the first in a new line of switchers that are browser-controllable over IP networks via tablet, smartphone, or laptop PC via the company’s BPNet IP platform.
Introduced at NAB earlier this year, the BPswitch line is part of a broadcast trend toward more affordable and flexible remote studios. Broadcast Pix calls them ‘cloud-based’ because the switcher is on-site at the remote studio location, and only the control functions are transmitted via IP protocol. That means it’s not necessary to transmit uncompressed video from the remote site to a control room, dramatically reducing the bandwidth required.
The Broadcast Pix Commander interface is designed to allow non-technical staffers to remotely perform switching, titling, clip insertion, and even PTZ camera control with the BPswitch product line. The switchers use the company’s BPNet and ioGates media-management system to provide full-motion video and manage access to video sources and tools.
Both switchers support up to four RTSP/NDI network inputs, two clips and six graphic channels, four multiview outputs and three keyers. They are loaded with the NewBlueNTX multilayer 3D motion graphics generator, which integrates with optional Rapid CG 4 software from Broadcast Pix for live updating of on-screen graphics based on real-time data. The switchers also integrate with CDNs including Facebook Live, YouTube Live, Ustream and Livestream. JVC camera control is an option.
The main difference between the FX4 and the FX6 is the number of physical (non-network) inputs — the FX4 has three HDMI/SDI inputs and one HDMI/SDI/analog input for a total of four, while the FX6 has four SDI inputs, one HDMI/SDI input, and one HDMI/SDI/analog input for a total of six.
Coming soon are higher-end units — the 4RU BPswitch MX, with eight SDI inputs; the 6RU BPswitch GX11 with 11 SDI inputs; and the 6RU BPswitch GX22 with 22 SDI inputs. All of the BPswitch models support 1080i, 720p and SD video. Broadcast Pix said they are “upgradeable” to 4K but hasn’t offered further details. Also, users of current Broadcast Pix switchers, including the Granite and Mica switchers, will be able to upgrade to BPswitch, the company said.
The BPswitch FX4 starts at $10,995, the company said.