NewTek VS-100 TalkShow Video Calling System


NewTek FG-000866-R001 Overview

Skype provides a great way for guests and correspondents to remote in to a live broadcasts, unfortunately relying on consumer hardware is fraught with glitches and interruptions. Packaged neatly within a 1RU rackmountable frame, the VS-100 TalkShow Video Calling System from NewTekis a bespoke computer running Skype TX software that is purpose-built for integrating Skype calls into live TV/Web broadcasts. It features dual Ethernet ports for TriCaster and 3Play users plus HD-SDI video in and out as well as balanced XLR audio in and out for hardware-based switchers. Quality settings and scaling are handled within the built-in software, helping eliminate many of the artifacts and aspect ratio issues encountered when simply scan-converting the output of a computer. It also features controls for tweaking the caller’s audio, helping ensure both picture and sound are up to broadcast requirements.

Apart from quality, the VS-100 mitigates other pitfalls associated with relying on normal Skype software and consumer computers for critical live applications. In particular, interruptions from other calls, personal data getting mingled in by accident, or IT related problems such as the software freezing or crashing. And in case something goes wrong on the caller’s end, there is an option to automatically cutaway to a user-defined still image until a good quality signal is restored or the director is able to cut to a new subject.

Key Benefits

Works with Any Skype User

Record on-air conversations with anyone, anywhere in the world who has a Skype account or can download the Skype client

Eliminate the Satellite Truck

Have correspondents “phone” in their reports over Skype to eliminate the need for a broadcast truck or rental of studio space with a satellite link

Works Like Any Video Source

Add behind-the scenes technical quality control to call audio and video, just like any in-studio production source

Get Higher Quality Results

Avoid the conversion loss, aspect-ratio squashing, and video artifacts of using desktop video with scan converters

Reliability of a Dedicated Professional Solution

  1. Avoid the risk of consumer-technology glitches, call interruptions, or computer crashes on the receiving end
  2. Reduce the risks associated with mixing personal communication applications with professional systems
  3. Remove the unexpected interruptions of conventional software, OS, firewall, and IT policies that make it inconvenient to air video calls from traditional laptops and computer screens

Software Features

Studio-Grade Skype TX software

Skype TX is a special, broadcast edition of Skype that provides audio and video free from notifications, adds, or other pop-ups, is designed to avoid aspect ratio mis-matches, and supports multiple calls at once

Tally Notification of Video Calls

Allows operators to see when TalkShow Skype feeds are currently live in a program

Add TalkShow Units for Multiple Skype Calls

Add TalkShow units and manage all within a single interface that offers previews, continuous call quality monitoring, and contact management. Use SkypeTX Control software – rather than direct keyboard and mouse operation – to manage multipe systems in simultaneous call/multiple TalkShow unit environments

Built-In Video Quality Checks

Failover to a custom still image when unforeseen bandwidth constraints occur below operator-defined preset value

Quality Optimizations

Uses a proprietary, real-time video processing engine that incorporates scaling, format conversion, aspect ratio conversion, and color correction routines. In addition, the software limits the return video resolution in order to prioritize quality for the incoming call video

Hardware Features

HD-SDI Input and Output

Output a live video call to any production switcher with SDI and receiver SDI video from a router or any production source to send a return image back to remote caller over IP

Dual Channel Ethernet Connectivity

Integrate with other NewTek systems. Output over Ethernet to the 3Play integrated sports production system or TriCaster multi-camera production system, while reserving the SDI hardware connection for other feeds

XLR Audio Input and Output

Bring in professional quality audio to send out over the return feed, and output incoming audio over a professional quality connector for integration via your studio’s analog audio mixer

Image Adjustments

Built-in image adjustment includes full proc-amp controls and automatic color correction

Audio Controls

Audio controls include compressor/limiter, graphic equalizer, and adjustable head-room

GPI Tally Port

Incorporate a tally system via the HD15 GPI (general purpose input) connector

HDMI and DVI Outputs

The integrated GPU features one HDMI and one DVI output for local monitoring

Front Panel Display

Rack-viewable RGB preview of Skype video calls, VU metering, caller, time, status, tally (on air) notification, and more

Rackmountable 1RU Form Factor

The standard 1RU rackmount design makes the VS-100 hardware and easy fit for integration alongside your existing studio hardware