Audio Engineering Society Standards Committee Chair Bruce Olson (pictured) reports an important step forward in the development of audio over IP in broadcasting. The AES and the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) have announced a collaboration with the goal of producing a new common packet-based network standard for linear PCM audio, working toward a "next generation AES/EBU interface based on IP technology."
First published in 1985, the AES3 standard, also known as the AES/EBU interface, is a fundamental standard for the transport of digital audio signals between professional devices. This new collaboration is a continuation of this work to benefit the entire professional audio industry.
The primary AES/EBU focus is on audio interoperability over high-performance IP networks, with the further goal of interoperability with the EBU's common framework for Audio Contribution over IP (ACIP). The initiative is partially inspired by the ACIP project group's interoperability recommendations for audio over wide-area IP networks. Through the ACIP2 group, chaired by the IRT’s Sonja Langhans, the EBU represents the technical interests of a key user group for the new standard, the public broadcasters of Europe.
Within the AES, the work has already started, with a project known as AES X192, chaired by Kevin Gross. AES states that a recently published draft is now being discussed among project participants, including some ACIP2 members.
New project participants are welcome. EBU members or manufacturers working in the broadcast domain can start by joining the ACIP2 project group. Others can directly contact AES task group SC-02-12-H, which is open to any directly and materially affected individuals.
The 133rd AES Convention, scheduled for October 26 to 29, 2012, in San Francisco at the Moscone Center, will introduce a dedicated Networked Audio Track chaired by noted engineer and longtime AES member, Tim Shuttleworth. Six Workshops and Tutorials developed for this event will feature participants including Sonja Langhans and Kevin Gross. They will address many of the workflow issues and related concerns currently acting as "stumbling blocks" in the path of interoperability.
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