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InfoComm: Grass Valley Adds H.264 Support to MEDIAEDGE4

New version also has HDMI output.

Grass Valley is demonstrating H.264 MPEG-4 compression in the latest version of its MEDIAEDGE digital signage and on-demand content delivery platform at InfoComm 09.

H.264 lets the platform store and manage more HD content per server, and a new HDMI output on the system’s set-top player allows it to send HD images to more many more screens.

MEDIAEDGE is at work now in training applications, corporate communications, retail digital signage, distance learning, decision support and media asset management. It makes content easier to locate, schedule, and play out for a variety of video-on-demand and point-of-presence display applications, all while leveraging the cost advantages of a standard IT infrastructure.

The new MEDIAEDGE4 system set-top box can decode H.264 content as well as MPEG-2 content from existing MEDIAEDGE3 systems. With the new HDMI output connector, it can feed a wider variety of HD monitors and displays.

H.264 offers about a 30 percent data-rate savings over MPEG-2.

“With the latest version of MEDIAEDGE, users can make better use of their network distribution pipeline and the hard disk space on the server,” said Jeff Rosica, senior vice president of Grass Valley. “With disk storage continuing to come down in price, this could dramatically increase the capacity of a MEDIAEDGE server and lower equipment costs. It will help a variety of applications get the most value for their investment and launch new services quickly and cost-effectively.”

Existing MEDIAEDGE3 customers can upgrade to Version 4 for a small fee. All Version 3 content and equipment is fully compatible with Version 4 when used in MPEG-2 mode. In addition, the physically smaller version 4 set-top players will play all version 3 content and new H.264 encoded content as well.

MEDIAEDGE4 system will be available in the third quarter of 2009.

Grass Valley