The Key to Video Cable Performance


Belden Professional Video Cables and Connectors

Virtually all TV broadcasters around the world have gone digital. Even Hollywood has converted from film to digital images. While some of these cameras record the data on hard drives or SSD (solid-state drives),  at some point you’re going to send this data, those digital images, from Point A to Point B. If you want to carry the hard drive or SSD from place to place, that’s fine (so-called “sneaker net”) but it is time-consuming and inefficient. Why not put that signal on a cable to move it from place to place? That’s what most broadcasters do. And, while you could do this on fiber, converting from electrons to photons and back again at the other end, the economical and simple way is still over copper cable, most commonly coax cable.


The photo to the right is Belden 1694A, the world’s most popular video cable. It’s a good compromise between size, distance, and cost. It is easy to put on connectors, especially the one-piece compression connectors that Belden now offers. (Our current record is two connectors in 33 seconds.) And these connectors, and the 1694A cable, can carry virtually any video signal you might wish to use including analog, 4×3 digital (SD-SDI), high definition (HD-SDI) and even 3gig (1080p/50 or 1080p/60).

The only thing you have to consider is how far the cable can go. Here’s a chart showing the recommended distance for 1694A and all of our other digital cables. Read more »

Compact Cabling Helps OB Truck Operators Run Their Business

Last month I visited a leading system integrator for TV studios and outside broadcast (OB) trucks. It is always impressive to see how full these trucks are packed with equipment for audio, video, intercoms, air conditioning and satellite dishes – and don’t forget the workspace for a crew of up to 25 people! Everything needs to be well thought-out to be clean, compact and super-efficient. In the end, this is a fully functioning professional TV studio on wheels… with two limitations: one, there’s much less space than in a permanent creation, production and delivery area; and two, there are the over-the-road axle weight requirements. Read more »

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