BBC R&D Designs Xilinx FPGAs into New Camera-Back Mount to Support Transmission of Video Over IP

Move to IP Networking Eliminates SDI Cabling at Source and Provides the System Performance to Provide Broadcast Quality Video Transport

LAS VEGAS - BBC R&D and Xilinx, Inc. (NASDAQ: XLNX) are demonstrating a prototype camera-back device (Stagebox) at the National Association of Broadcasters Show (NAB), Booth #N4319, that enables the transport of professional quality video over internet protocol (IP)-based networks. The BBC R&D Stagebox can be attached to the back of any broadcast-quality camera. Due to the integration of more system functionality onto a Xilinx field programmable gate array (FPGA), expensive and cumbersome SDI/audio/talkback and ancillary cabling can be replaced with a single network cable (fiber or Cat6). The small form factor device effectively expands the reach of video networks to remote production sites and studios using IP networks.

"CoreEL's H.264/AVC-I codec IP core combined with our flexible FPGAs allowed BBC R&D engineers to quickly and cost-effectively build and deploy an incredibly innovative solution to a longstanding problem," said Ben Runyan, director of broadcast and consumer segment marketing at Xilinx. "The ubiquity of video in all areas of our society is pushing broadcasters and equipment makers to constantly develop new solutions to the challenges across the acquisition, contribution, and distribution broadcast networks to be consumed by an information-hungry public."

In both sports settings and extremely hazardous news-gathering conditions, BBC R&D's Stagebox technology will allow real-time video streaming to production crews and equipment far away from the action. Whereas HD-SDI cable reaches 100-200 meters at most, IP networks run all over the world. Using only a single network cable for all camera signals also lends enhanced mobility and simplicity for a camera crew and lowers operating expenses by reducing cabling challenges.

"BBC R&D's Stagebox is designed to work with our huge range of different programs, from live sports productions through to breaking news stories on the other side of the world," said Brandon Butterworth, chief scientist at BBC R&D. "By combining the many different requirements of a camera operator with CoreEL's H.264/AVC-I codec and our own intellectual property we have been able to develop an incredibly useful set of technologies which run on Xilinx's Virtex®-6 FPGAs."

CoreEL Technologies, a Premier Xilinx Alliance Program Member and system level products and solutions provider, along with its partner Leading Light Technologies (L2Tek), will market the solution globally.

"High levels of system integration were needed to design the Stagebox technology. By combining the Virtex-6 FPGA, CoreEL's Codec and the BBC's IP, we were able to develop a tightly integrated solution which will now pave the way for faster adoption of AVC-I Codec for video contribution applications," said Guruprasad M. Parthasarathy, director of marketing at CoreEL. "In addition to providing the single chip AVC-I Codec vital for the Stagebox technology, CoreEL will also produce and supply the modules to the industry further extending our offering to the OEM market segment."

"By using a Xilinx FPGA and CoreEL's H.264/AVC-I codec IP core for BBC R&D's Stagebox technology, we are able to combine emerging technology with shrinking time-to-market budgets and get a world-leading product to market very quickly and cost effectively, while maintaining the very high performance and quality needed for this application," said Mark Scott-South, director of sales at L2tek.

About BBC R&D

About CoreEL Technologies

CoreEL Technologies is a Product Engineering company offering Intellectual property Cores, System level products & custom hardware solutions to customers worldwide for the Digital Video, Defense and Aerospace market segments. CoreEL's solutions have been proven, field deployed and have enabled its customers to meet their cost and time to market requirements. For more information about CoreEL, please visit

About Leading Light Technologies (L2tek)

Established in 2008, Leading Light Technologies (L2tek) is a manufacturer's representative and technical distributor specializing in high speed interface, signal processing and compression products. L2tek represents many of the leading semiconductor manufacturers in the professional broadcast industry, with an experienced team supporting customer designs throughout Europe and Scandinavia. For more information, visit:

About Xilinx in Broadcast

Xilinx is the worldwide leader in all-programmable technology that offers scalable performance, flexibility, and re-configurability for longer time in market for high-end professional broadcast capture, transport and display systems. Xilinx programmable devices enable faster adoption and migration to the latest standards, interfaces and codecs while lowering overall CAPEX and OPEX. For more information, visit:

About Xilinx

Xilinx is the world's leading provider of programmable platforms. For more information, visit:


Xilinx, the Xilinx logo, Artix, ISE, Kintex, Spartan, Virtex, Zynq, and other designated brands included herein are trademarks of Xilinx in the United States and other countries. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.


Bruce Fienberg



Xilinx, Inc.; BBC R&D

Web Site:

More from Laboratory and Research Supplies and Equipment

All Topics