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Ultra-Low-Latency Wireless Camera Systems with Integrated Intercom, Camera Control and Paint

Published on Mar 27, 2018 | Wireless Video

Broadcasters in the sports, live events, and newsgathering spaces — where the lowest possible delay is mandatory while preserving high video quality — are often hampered by high latency when using wireless camera systems. ABonAir’s one-of-a-kind wireless video links provide extremely low latency in a long-range, high-performance, broadcast-grade wireless system. In fact, ABonAir has achieved a remarkable 7-millisecond latency — something no other vendor has been able to achieve while maintaining broadcast quality and high reliability using industry-standard H.264 encoding.

ABonAir: 7-Millisecond Latency Using Industry-Standard H.264 Encoding

Many live remote productions use wireless camera systems, but it’s difficult to control a camera from afar when latency puts you a few seconds behind the action. For example, in sports applications, when operators might be piloting a drone or controlling the iris of a remote camera, lag time in the wireless transmission interferes with the ability to keep the camera in focus with the proper exposure, which in turn negatively affects the quality. ABonAir’s flagship AB512™ and the AB507™ wireless video links overcome those technical challenges. Built on a bidirectional radio channel between transmitter and receiver, ABonAir’s wireless video links acknowledge the correct acceptance of each group of pixels, thus providing exceptionally robust and reliable long range wireless video transmission.

Most notably, both the AB512 and the AB507 systems reduce latency to only a 7-millisecond delay (also known as subframe delay) for live event coverage, multicamera productions, and any other application in which latency of two to six frames or 30 to 90 milliseconds is unacceptable. This low delay enables crews to produce multicamera and live shows without worrying about lip sync problems caused by the lag or delays from the simultaneous operation of multiple cameras.

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ABonAir Wireless Video Links

  • Industry-first spectrum analyzer for wireless camerasAB512-Receiver-1RU-Portable-ABonAir
  • Proprietary OFDM, H.264 encoding method
  • Up to 50 Mbps bidirectional throughput


  • Unprecedented 7ms wireless latency
  • Maximum bandwidth usage
  • Long-distance wireless transmission
  • Broadcast-quality video

How Does ABonAir Do It?

Proprietary OFDM System

COFDM is the most common encoding method in broadcast wireless camera systems, but it limits picture quality because it limits bandwidth usage to just 8 MHz of the 20+ MHz bandwidth available in the 5 GHz and 7 GHz bands. ABonAir developed its own OFDM transmission method that uses tried-and-true adaptive-bit-rate H.264 encoding and decoding with dynamic automatic re-request (ARQ) and variable bit rates to ensure no available bandwidth gets wasted.

Built-in Spectrum AnalyzerAB512-Wireless-Video-Camera-Mount

An RF spectrum analyzer runs in the background, continually analyzing the environment and adjusting as needed. It automatically selects and hops to the best RF channel without dropping a single bit, while modulation and bit rate adapt themselves based on RF link conditions. If the channel is still a bit noisy, then the system turns to dynamic forward error correction and ARQ to restore only the missing bits.

ABonAir is the first to implement this technique in a wireless camera system. By taking a more intelligent approach and sending only those packets that are needed, ABonAir makes more efficient use of the available bandwidth. And it all happens within 7 milliseconds.

Up to 50 Mbps Bidirectional Throughput

ABonAir’s system is also one of the few if only systems with a full bidirectional (MIMO) radio for video transmission. Others might have other bidirectional secondary radios for camera and intercom control, but ABonAir has the only radio to achieve an unheard-of 50 megabits per second throughput bidirectionally, depending on RF conditions. This feature ensures the transmitter and receiver are constantly talking to each other. If a packet is missing, the decoder requests the missing packet within 7 milliseconds.

Options for Long-Distance Wireless Transport

AB512 — Camera-mounted, wireless video, bidirectional intercom, and camera control system that lets you transmit video directly from cameras to media centers or OB trucks wirelessly. It supports ABonAir’s Fiber Coverage Extension units (FCEs), which make it possible to connect a single receiver to multiple FCEs in various locations throughout a venue or even to separate sites, all via fiber cables with a 20km range. Also provides highly desirable features such as intercom, IFB, camera control, and paint.

ABonAir has achieved a remarkable 7-millisecond latency — something no other vendor has been able to achieve while maintaining broadcast quality and high reliability using industry-standard H.264 encoding.

Jim Jachetta
EVP and Chief Technology officer at VidOvation

Multi-zone Fiber Coverage Extender FCE

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