8 New Things You Need to Know About AV Signal Transport

By Zachary Fisher
Senior Curriculum Developer

Co-instructors  Joseph Cornwall, CTS-D, CTS-I, ISF-C, FOI, of Legrand, and Jose Mozota, CTS-I, HDBaseT Authorized Trainer, SDVoE Design Partner, of Freeman Solutions, Inc. are bringing us back to the world of AV Signal Transport this November. After last year’s successful and mind-blowing Masterclass, Joe and Jose are back at it with an AV Signal Transport Masterclass that will go even further into the world of wire (and fiber).  


So we’re back with eight more top takeaways that this class will ask and answer, but this list just scratches the surface. Register and tune in on November 9th, 10th, and 11th ready to have your minds collectively blown.  


Over-the-Air (OTA) & Over-the-Top (OTT) 

According to Cornwall, there are three crowning achievements in 20th Century AV; the US implementation of television in 1941 based on Philo Farnsworth's 1927 work and subsequent patents, the adoption of a standard for color television in 1953, and the creation of ATSC 1.0 digital broadcast television standards in the late 1990s. Lately, he seems to be pretty excited about the imminent impact of ATSC 3.0.  We asked him why. 

"This is only the third time in history that we've changed the way the most powerful and ubiquitous communication system known to humankind works," he says with nearly breathless enthusiasm. "This is a hybrid broadcast and IP-based delivery standard that will blur the lines between Over-The-Top CATV solutions and Over-the-Air open content. ATSC 3.0 will bolster targeted communications such as remote education in areas that don't have access to adequate broadband. This is a big step in bridging the digital divide and every AV pro needs to anticipate its impact." 

Can you apply DISCAS to the Desktop? 

It might be taking liberties with AVIXA’s Display Image Size for 2D Content (DISCAS) to apply it to the desktop, but Cornwall and Mozota have no qualms, quips, or trepidations about using the technique in such real-world applications. There's a need in this new work from home world to know exactly how to maximize the utility of your home workspace and these gentlemen are clearly thinking about redefining the boundaries of desktop AV.  

In this hybrid work environment, more work is being done from dining room tables and home offices than ever before. Pro AV has never been closer to the home.  It's time to learn how the lessons of DISCAS can ensure maximum performance in any home office environment. 

Let’s face it, HDCP 2.2 is a pain, but what can we do to fix it? 

Let’s say there’s a movie studio that has a theme park and they have a new killer ride that they want to advertise throughout the park by showing their newest blockbuster on a loop. No problem, right? I mean, they own the content. Not according to HDCP 2.2. You have limits on the number of endpoints and limits on the number of hops to get to those endpoints. HDCP 1.4 was unlimited but 2.2 limits the number of devices to 32. That might work for a typical residential home, but what's our movie studio to do? Well, they would need to go to a special licensed AV Installer to buy a special HDCP Pro distribution amplifier designed for large yachts, mega-mansions, universities, and corporations.

Are you ready for a twenty-year-old CODEC to mess up your system? 

There you are. You’re all ready to show your team the exciting image you have on your phone. It has a USB-C connection and your system has a USB-C input, you’re all plugged in and your device is even charging, and then … nothing. You can’t get the image to your display. Unknown to you, your phone uses a twenty-year-old encryption CODEC, DisplayLink, but your system is using DisplayPort over alt mode. BYOD might be the name of the game, but it comes with a lot of complications as every system has to be compatible with every device. And the problem is that it is sometimes difficult to even determine what signal a particular device is passing. Joe and Jose will help elucidate this dark work of hidden incompatibilities and make sure your system won’t be stumped by an older CODEC. 

What is a Jumbo Frame and how much does one weigh? 

Jumbo Frames might be something that used to only be important for data centers, but AV needs to worry about them and their size too. You will find that Jumbo Frames will affect JPEG2000 and other AVoIP transmission schemes. Problem is that you need to account for them when you weigh your decisions on a choice of switch because those switches need to be able to handle them.  

What the Heck Is I2C Anyway?  

This one is back for another go from Joe and Jose’s class last year because it’s still not something that many AV folks know about. But that should still change. It may be internal but it’s critical to AV applications and recent testing shows the problems you can face with I2C. Learn what it is and why you should care about this serial communications bus and why it matters for your AV application. 

Will HDBaseT swallow up AVoIP? 

The newest HDBaseT 3.0 chipset will allow gig ethernet while simultaneously carrying uncompressed 4K 4:4:4 and USB 2.0 with full power. With this new chipset we’re opening up the world of AV to possibilities previously unimagined. There is now a way to put an IP camera and signal to a display and have video coming back to watching someone watching your content on a screen in real-time. This might be a game-changer in digital signage. We can imagine scenarios where I can watch you watching me.  

Are connections a component now? 

Joe and Jose jumped into this topic last go around, but it’s back with a vengeance as they dive even deeper. Wires aren’t dumb anymore, and there is so much processing going on at the cable level, that we might think of those connections as components in their own right. They’re actively transforming signals with their own chips rather than passively passing them down the signal chain. Are wires smart now? 


The AV Signal Transport Masterclass, presented by AVIXA in association with Legrand AV and Freman Solutions, happening November 9, 10, and 11, will give you a comprehensive look at digital AV signal transport methods and can help you make better decisions for your projects.  Register here.


Zachary Fisher
AVIXA, Senior Curriculum Developer

A former Renaissance academic who traded in camera obscuras for the bright lights of modern AV. Currently serving as AVIXA’s Senior Developer of On-Demand Training.