The What: MultiDyne Fiber Optic Solutions has developed a common fiber-optic platform for three product lines, empowering customers with a modular solution to support virtually any field-based transport need. At the 2018 NAB Show, taking place April 9-12 at the Las Vegas Convention Center, MultiDyne (Booth C6818) will unveil its second-generation BullDog II platform, giving customers this scalable platform to support a number of signals in one box.
The What Else: The BullDog II will eclipse the current MultiDyne family of Field Fiber units, which includes the LightBox, LightCube, and current-generation BullDog. To date, these have been MultiDyne’s three foundational systems to support long-distance signal distribution between trucks, studios, and hard-to-reach locations in broadcast, live production, and commercial AV applications.
To further increase flexibility, MultiDyne will initially roll out three different frame sizes for applications ranging from single-camera standup interviews to the largest-scale sporting events, with additional frame sizes to follow. Its ability to interoperate with MultiDyne openGear cards, the MultiDyne VF-9000 rackmount fiber transport frame, and other BullDog systems adds additional flexibility for Field Fiber users.
As an example, users can easily change video signal counts from one event to the next by adding or removing cards. At the same time, new cards can be inserted to increase audio density or Ethernet capacity, among many additional signals and applications.
The BullDog II adopts a compact design that is much smaller and lighter than other systems, according to the company, reducing weight for improved portability onboard trucks and out in the field. The design integrates a monitor and touchscreen for signal control and status monitoring between two points.
“The BullDog, upon its introduction, was our most scalable field fiber system to date,” said Frank Jachetta, president, MultiDyne. “With this second-generation system, we are effectively offering a single point of convergence with custom configurations for our customers. BullDog II users will now have one rugged enclosure to accommodate news, sports, and live event productions for any field application where remote powered equipment is required.”
The new BullDog platform will accommodate multiple video formats (12G, 4K, 3Gb/s, HD/SDI, composite) as well as mic/line audio, intercom, tally, Ethernet, genlock, and data. Additionally, full camera control is supported using the camera manufacturer’s RCP via serial or a 10/100GigE Ethernet connection.
“It is a powerful platform that is careful not to box users into a fixed set of features and capabilities,” Jachetta added. “Instead, our customers have nearly limitless freedom to remove and add MultiDyne modules and openGear cards that will fit specific signal counts and applications. And its smaller footprint and lighter weight make portability that much easier for users who are scaling for larger productions.”
The Bottom Line: The BullDog II platform is engineered to give broadcasters, content producers, and commercial AV users (corporate, medical, venues) the benefits of a purpose-engineered solution from a durability perspective, with the added ability to scale up and down for any configuration and signal count that were traditionally spread across various product lines.