Audit and Fault Detection via the Crystal Metadata Cloud™

By Alan Young  |  March 15, 2018

The success of a network management system lies in its ability to identify, capture, alert users to, and (if possible) automatically repair problems to keep the network running smoothly. Faults in the network can cause a variety of problems including degraded signal, static frames, color bars, lip sync and volume issues, and even complete blackouts. In order to protect broadcaster’s bottom line and viewer sanity, it’s crucial to have a network management system that can deal with these types of issues in a quick and efficient manner.

Drawing upon more than thirty years of experience in the monitor, control, and automation of video delivery, Crystal has developed Crystal Metadata Cloud™, a breakthrough product that uses patent-pending Temporal Fingerprint technology to transmit metadata out-of-band from the transport stream, and crucially resynchronize it on a frame-accurate basis with the content in the downstream distribution chain. By taking fingerprints of the audio and the video at the origination facility and then taking fingerprints at some point downstream, you can detect any number of things – namely whether the audio or video has been unduly delayed or changed. If the fingerprints don’t match up at the receive point or if the video signal itself is not good (black or corrupted video at one receive point will immediately show up as loss of fingerprints), the problems will be recorded and reported. This also makes possible an audit of exactly what video and audio reaches any point in the distribution chain. Specifically, in terms of lip sync error (an issue that is notoriously difficult to track down and fix, not to mention extremely objectionable to viewers), the transmission delay of the video and audio are measured separately. If they differ by more than a few milliseconds, the fault is reported and corrected automatically.

Crystal Metadata Cloud™ is truly a must-have enhancement to your existing network management system. Its extremely accurate measurement of transmission delay at each point in the chain allows for efficient detection, timely reporting, and quick resolution to common problems that plague every network.

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