Megahertz Shows Breadth of SNG Technologies at IBC 2013


Leading systems integrator and mobile broadcast production specialist Megahertz Broadcast Systems is showing not one but two new vehicles on its stand at IBC2013. One will be a traditional uplink truck – to be delivered to NBC – while the other will feature the latest IP and Ka-band technology.

The VSAT vehicle has been built by Megahertz as a showcase for low-cost, high-performance IP capabilities. Ka-band IP over satellite saves operational costs in terms of direct charges for bandwidth, but also because it requires very low power from the uplink to guarantee secure communications. The demonstration truck uses a maximum 6W uplink through a small antenna, with video, audio and two-way data all encapsulated into the IP stream.

The low power requirements for the uplink mean that the vehicle can be powered by batteries and an inverter for silent operation, with the batteries charged from the engine if required. The vehicle also supports a local network, including WiFi, to simplify all communications between the truck at the news site and base.


The NBC uplink vehicle links via low latency MPEG-4 and DVB-S2 on Ku-band, with redundant TWT high power amplifiers for absolute security. It provides a spacious working environment for several operators, making it ideal for production of supplementary sports and entertainment as well as news. Built in to the vehicle is an on-board diesel generator, with sufficient power for production lighting as well as all the vehicle’s systems.

“While there is huge interest in fast response IP newsgathering, there is still a large market for the traditional SNG truck, connecting over specialist links,” said Steve Burgess, technical director at Megahertz Broadcast Systems. “Our key message is that we understand all of these technologies because we have been building these systems for more than 35 years.

“The idea of having two contrasting vehicles on our stand at IBC this year is that we can show our visitors the advantages of each,” he added. “We want to move the conversation on from what broadcasters have traditionally bought to what they really need to meet their operational requirements. It may well be that a VSAT truck on Ka-band will give them the quality, reliability and access they require, at a considerably lower capital and operational cost.”


Megahertz Broadcast Systems, a KIT digital company, is a leading independent broadcast systems integrator. Its highly experienced engineering team provides a complete service from engineering planning and design through product evaluation and project management to commissioning, training and support. The team is as adept at file-based architectures as it is in traditional broadcast infrastructures. Recently completed projects include outside broadcast vehicles, high definition studios, playout facilities and earth stations, as well as audio visual installations for applications as varied as mosques and the London Stock Exchange.