In Broadcast - NABSHOW 2015 - 81


81

www.inbroadcast.com | NAB SHOW 11-16 April 2015 | InShow Guide

Long-Duration Testing in
the IP/Internet Domain
Resolving the many things that can go wrong when transmitting video over IP...
By Adam Schadle, Vice President

A

s broadcasting and content
distribution move ever farther
into the Internet domain, satellite,
broadcast, cable, and IPTV network
technologists, system architects, and
engineers must continually test new
codec technologies to ensure that
distribution setups are primed to
deliver the best possible video quality
at multiple bit rates, frame rates, and
resolutions. That quality is ultimately
determined by the viewers, and thus is
not easily quantifiable.
Reference-based
video
quality
testing, whereby the quality of the
output is measured against the
source content and then compared to
accepted scales of human perception,
is still the most accurate way to
determine how viewers will see your
video, and the level of quality they will
perceive.
Testing is important because many
things can go wrong when transmitting
video over IP, such as:
	 *	 The	video	encoder	can	compress		
the video poorly;
	 *	 The	video	encoder	can	package		
the data incorrectly, causing poor
transmission;
	 *	 The	transmission	media	can	add,		
delay, corrupt, or miss packets;
	 *	 The	video	decoder	can	fail	to
read the transmitted stream;
	 *	 Or	the	video	decoder	can	badly		
decompress the video.
Any one of these things can
negatively affect what the viewer sees.
Often this type of testing is done on
short clips of video, perhaps a couple

of minutes' worth, to test and compare
performance over a series of frames.
This type of testing is short-duration
testing.
But what would happen if the video
processing units did not produce an
error for several hours or days? What
if a particular set of incoming data sent
at just the wrong time was what it took
to trigger a problem? Those scenarios
are very difficult to replicate, but they
will be the first things your customers
notice should they occur after you
transmit the content. That's why it's
also important to monitor video over
a long period of time for video quality,
audio quality, lip sync, and loudness.
Long-duration testing not only gives
an understanding of perceived video
quality from the viewer's perspective,
but also helps pinpoint significant
errors and problems with uptime
(breakups, black, artifacts, skipped
frames, etc.).
When performing reference-based
testing in the IP domain, the source
material comes in via IP or SDI. In
order to accommodate the different
profiles required for IP delivery, you
first have to reduce the resolution/
frame rate of the source material
in order to create an acceptable

reference, and do so using the target
transcoding device, so as to minimise
the artifacts and/or degradations that
result. You must create a new version
of the reference for each stream that
needs testing and for each profile
or device under test. Only then does
it make sense to compare it to the
encoded/transcoded material that the
end user will see.
Once you create the acceptable
references, what's the best way to go
about long-duration testing of your IPbound content?
The answer is Video Clarity's RTM
real-time audio and video monitoring
solution (RTM). RTM continuously
monitors the video quality, detects the
error event, and saves the video and
audio event and surrounding content
before, and after the event, so that you
can diagnose the problem and devise a
fix.
When comparing the reference to the
downstream output, RTM aligns the
audio and video in the two streams,
and looks for areas with temporal
disturbance, such as scene changes,
fades to black, fast motion changes,
talking to silence, talking to music,
or music to silence. If RTM detects
any dropped frames, it dynamically
realigns them.
RTM analyses the reference and
processed audio and video streams

Real-time quality measurement and
monitoring of new HEVC codecs and services

RTM is an easy to use, quality
measurement solution, based on one of
the most highly accurate video quality
measurements available

separately, calculates an offset for
each, and creates text and graphical
test data for video quality, audio
quality, lip sync, and loudness. The
offset depicted is the delay caused by
processing. In theory, the audio and
video delay should be equal. If they are
not, then the difference could create a
lip sync problem.
RTM can run via SNMP, socket
commands, or from its own intuitive
interface. RTM logs all of the data and
generates alerts based on user-defined
profiles when:
	 *	 Video	quality	drops;
	 *	 Audio	quality	drops;
	 *	 VANC	data	is	not	complete;	or
	 *	 A/V	delay	is	incorrect
(indicating a lip sync problem)
RTM is an easy to use, quality
measurement solution, based on one
of the most highly accurate video
quality measurements available. It
performs several tests that are critical
to determining quality of delivery
in an IP or baseband environment.
With RTM, you can set up a test and
leave, knowing you will see alerts and
logs if an error occurs. The ultimate
payoff is a keen understanding of the
performance of any potential delivery
method being considered.


http://www.inbroadcast.com http://videoclarity.com/video-monitoring/ http://videoclarity.com/video-monitoring/ http://videoclarity.com/ http://nab15.mapyourshow.com/6_0/exhibitor/exhibitor-details.cfm?ExhID=726

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