Vortex Communications manufactures and supplies video and audio equipment to broadcasters and system builders worldwide from its base in the UK. We also import and distribute products for a number of partner companies.
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New

CallMe™ is a new cost-effective Subscription Codec service that lets contributors send high-quality broadcast audio back to the studio using the internet, without the need for dedicated hardware or software.

It has been developed to let Radio and TV Stations put a contributor on-the-air without having to send out an Outside Broadcast vehicle or for them to have any special hardware, software or even specific technical knowledge.


LiveShot 2nd Generation multi-stream codec from Comrex provides ultra-low latency, full-duplex HD/SD plus Comms over single or multiple IP connections. Using techniques learned with the industry-standard ACCESS, LiveShot uses the same technology to stream video and audio over challenging public Internet connections such as 3G, 4G, WiFi and satellite, at bitrates from 32kb/s to 15Mb/s which it can combine for bonding and diversity without the need for additional hardware.

LiveShot uses state-of-the-art H.264 HIGH Profile video and AAC-ELD audio coding with less than 200ms delay, while its intelligent buffer manager keeps latency to a minimum on any network, making LiveShot the ideal tool for live two-way outside broadcasts. As well as the full-duplex video and audio stream, LiveShot provides an independent two-way cue / IFB channel which is available via Bluetooth or a wired headset in the field.

The Portable unit fits between a broadcast camera and its battery and incorporates two "XLR-style" USB sockets to accommodate flexible gooseneck adapters, each carrying one or two wireless modems. The CrossLock technology built into LiveShot combines the data bandwidth from several network connections (e.g. multiple 3G dongles) for higher-quality streams. No service contract or subscription is required and the separate data streams are automatically recombined by the 1U LiveShot Rack unit back at the studio.

The LiveShot Central Server provided by Comrex will allow remote management of your whole family of LiveShot codecs directly from a web browser. It can even be used to pull down better-than-live quality content which has been archived to the Portable's SD card during a broadcast. When combined with CrossLock, LCS makes firewall traversal a breeze and allows connections to be established from either the field or studio unit at the touch of a button.


New

Our entire V-400 clock range has received an engineering and design refresh to provide enhanced operability, lower power consumption and additional features. The displays themselves are clearer and infra-red remote control for setup is included as standard, as is stopwatch operation.

Three ranges are now available – all can free-run but their locking capabilities are different; V-400A is designed for slave use with a TimeLord Master Clock plus it has optional input interfaces (EBU and IRIG for example) availability for slave connectivity to external systems; V-400N has an Ethernet interface for NTP locking to a time source on the same subnet such as the TimeLord-Net but also NTP servers on the internet – and the new V-400NP has both NTP locking and PoE Power-over-Ethernet capability which means that mains power is not required – available for clocks up to 120mm high digits because of PoE power constraints (15W).


The V3X Intelligent 3G Antenna is the ideal partner for any device that needs to stream audio or video using a 3G mobile connection.

Using a patented intelligent multi-beam antenna array, V3X extends the range and throughput of a 3G connection, bringing stable data throughputs around 2Mbps in most 3G locations without difficulty. Compared with the small aerials built into 3G dongles, the V3X provides some 20dB additional gain with excellent stability. Intelligent selection of the cell with the best data throughput ensures optimum connectivity from any location.

Tests using V3X to connect to 3G with an ACCESS IP Audio Codec in places where 3G coverage is marginal and reception poor, have proved the remarkable capabilities of this combination for outside broadcast use; indeed they are in daily use for news, current affairs and sports coverage in places where only ISDN and wired connections would have been considered before.

The V3X acts as a Wireless Access Point and devices are then connected using a WiFi or cabled network connection, allowing the optimum siting of the V3X for 3G reception whilst still providing excellent connectivity.

The new V3X-PRO with IP65 protection rating has been specifically designed for pole-mounting and outdoor use.


The ACCESS IP audio codecs from Comrex use revolutionary BRIC Technology to deliver very low-delay, jitter-free, high-quality stereo, mono or dual-mono audio over the public internet and other IP networks. They can be used with wireless connections such as 3G, 4G and BGAN/VSAT satellite services, or with WiFi or Ethernet. They also work over POTS, delivering 15kHz stereo to another ACCESS or 15kHz mono to the legacy Matrix, BlueBox and Vector codecs.

Dynamic buffering, powerful error correction and masking and BRUTE Transmission Enhancement adapt to changing network conditions to provide the lowest delay audio without jitter or coding artefacts; no user intervention is required when the unit is operating. There are no front-panel controls on the rackmount unit and all setup and connection functions, as well as status information, audio levels and network statistics are accessed through the user-friendly web interface. Operation is as simple as selecting a remote unit from the 'address book' and clicking Connect, while advanced menus are available for those who wish to configure all aspects of the audio coding process.


AAC algorithms from Fraunhofer IIS – including the remarkable AAC-ELD family – are included as standard and provide excellent audio with very low delay coupled with low data bandwidth. SIP connectivity is also supported providing N/ACIP compatibility using AAC, linear uncompressed, FLAC, Opus, G.722 and G.711 algorithms.


ACCESS HotSwitch

HotSwitch is an application which provides advanced control capabilities for the Comrex ACCESS family of IP audio codecs. It allows a local ACCESS codec to send audio to multiple remote codecs, while hot-switching between the remote units for the live return audio feed.

HotSwitch is ideal for radio stations which need to accept live contributions from a number of reporters in the field in a short space of time (for example sports results roundups). A demo version is available for download.


Hot Products





The new SPG-100HD solves the problem of locking SD and HD Video with digital audio, time, timecode and frequency. When used in conjunction with the TimeLord-MTG Master Clock, atomic-locked timecode can be locked to video from the SPG-100HD.

Features include:

  • Genlockable to HD (tri-level) / SD (bi-level) video syncs, AES and word clock digital audio reference, LTC timecode, GPS 10MHz reference
  • Auto detection of input video formats
  • All HD rates selectable in progressive scan or interlaced 1080 or 720
  • All SD rates automatically selected and available separately from HD
  • Simultaneous AES & word clock outputs genlocked and phase coherent to input reference
  • Pull up/down sample rate adjustable to suit all film, video and audio applications
  • Ultra-low jitter performance and ultra-high frequency stability using true DDS direct digital synthesis.
  • Available with ovened oscillator and dual power-supply to provide full broadcast & AES3 Grade 1 reference outputs.

The VX8500-II/D works with both HD-SDI and SD-SDI serial digital video signals, with or without embedded audio. It is low-cost and ideal for smaller studio and post-production applications with up to sixteen SDI Serial Digital Video sources that can be switched to any (one or more) of the sixteen SDI Serial Digital destinations. It complies with SMPTE 259M (SD-SDI) and SMPTE 292M (HD-SDI) and features automatic equalization and re-clocking on all channels.


BRIC-Link low-cost IP Audio Codec

Meet BRIC-Link - the industry-standard ACCESS codec's little brother. . . . BRIC-Link high-performance IP Audio Codecs are designed for point-to-point and point-to-multi-point Audio connections and use Comrex's revolutionary BRIC technology (Broadcast-Reliable Internet Codec) to deliver low-delay, jitter-free, high-quality mono or stereo audio over IP networks. They have both analogue and digital audio inputs and outputs and can send linear or compressed audio with very low delay. Uncompressed PCM plus compressed FLAC Lossless Audio Coding and AAC algorithms are all included as standard. End-to-end contact closures and ancillary serial data are also provided.


Fiberlink® is an extensive collection of Fibre-Optic transmission products that support video, audio and data signals. The range also includes a configurable Fibre Optic Switcher, Modular Rack System for multi-channel operation plus other useful Fibre Optic add-ons and Accessories.

The range includes devices for sending analogue and digital video (including 3G/HD/SDI), analogue and digital audio, computer video (VGA and DVI) and data over multi-mode or single mode fibre-optic cable. The IBC award-winning OM32 Fiberlink optical matrix can be factory- configured with any number of inputs and outputs (up to 32) to keep costs to a minimum.


The SCAN-DO/HD is a broadcast-quality, high-definition and standard-definition scan converter with DVI input and HD-/SD-SDI output. The Scan Do HD allows websites, videos, computer graphics, video games or any other computer-generated content, at resolutions up to 1920x1200, to be broadcast in just about any standard- or high-definition format. No additional computer hardware or software is required and all internal processing paths in the SCAN-DO/HD are 10-bit, ensuring a consistently clean, high-quality output.


Pair the BluePack with your Mobile Phone; Dial the Studio - and off you go! BluePack allows live man-on-the-street interviews through a cell phone equipped with Bluetooth Wireless capability. The BluePack pairs to your cell phone like a Bluetooth wireless headset and incorporates a professional microphone preamp and powerful headphone amplifier make sure the message gets through. A 3.5 mm stereo line input jack allows recordings to be mixed into the broadcast.