Balancing Processing Power and Integration Versatility with the Makito X4 Rugged Video Encoder
In a previous blog post we outlined the reasons why we developed the Makito X4 Rugged video encoder alongside our bread-and-butter blade/appliance the Makito X4. In this blog post, we will explore a few of the factors that make the Makito X4 Rugged encoder unique.
With the Makito X4 Rugged, we have blended the high image quality at low bitrates of our Makito X HEVC line of video encoders with the compact and rugged design of the 4-input Makito XCR. Not only have we shrunk the size of our rugged HEVC/H.265 video encoder while doubling the number of input channels, we’ve also significantly enhanced what we can do with motion imagery streams at the edge. The new Makito X4 Rugged also retains the same military-grade connectors and pinouts as our current Makito XCR and Makito X HEVC Rugged video encoders to ensure an easy upgrade path for existing integrations.
Rugged and Flexible Interfaces
The internal makeup of our newest ISR video encoder includes processing, IO interfacing, and power boards neatly stacked together to keep the encoder both small and flexible. The interface board provides access to a wide range of video sources with varying field of frame sizes and standards.
As ISR and situational awareness applications require multiple types of sources, we made sure that our newest video encoder would be able to manage both analog and digital sources, from SD to HD and all the way up to 4K UHD resolutions.
Makito X4 interfaces include 4 BNC connectors, 2 network connectors, a power connector and a ground lug. All 4 BNC inputs support 3G-SDI (or 1080p60 HD), and 1 supports 12G-SDI for 4K (as well as 6G-SDI for 2160p30 sources). Three of the inputs double as composite video ports for ingesting analog sources. This allows integrators to future-proof their workflows with today’s installed cameras, while enabling support for the coming wave of 4K sensors.
For IP networks we’ve included two 1Gb ethernet interfaces on separate circular connectors identical to the ones available with the XCR and Makito X HEVC Rugged. Dual-network interfaces allows for physically separating device management and streaming networks and effectively allows integrators to keep (for instance) onboard flight networks separate from datalink-connected dissemination networks.
8 Cores of Video Processing Power
Each of the internal encoding cores can be configured to support either HEVC or H.264. Each codec core can be independently configured using a number of tools to improve picture quality while keeping bitrates as low as possible. GOP framing can be adjusted, depending on the need, to include different configurations of I, P, and B frames. When accurate color information is needed the Makito X4 Rugged also supports 10-bit pixel depths and 4:2:2 chroma subsampling. As we mentioned in our webinar, though designed for ISR, the Makito X4 Rugged is a fully-functional Makito video encoder with the same broadcast quality video features as the Makito X4.
Video at the Edge
The Makito X4 video encoding platform has more than just additional interfaces and video encoding cores. The hardware power within enables future extensibility for image processing and intelligence extraction directly at the source. This enables new possibilities for motion imagery workflows where the most salient data is curated nearest to the camera, and only intelligence is sent over the network: Processing power located at a network’s edge may lead to sending no video at all. We’ll share more on ISR edge applications in an upcoming blog post.
Ready for Deployment
When we designed the Makito X4 Rugged we took into consideration not just new projects, but also our ongoing ones. For this reason the form factor and connectors of the Makito X4 Rugged are made to be easily embedded onto all types of fixed and mobile platforms including air, sea, and land based. By supporting MIL specs, MISB, and STANANG interoperability, the Makito X4 Rugged provides a significant step forward in motion imagery as a powerful new video encoding and streaming solution.
Want to learn more about the Makito X4 Rugged, and how it can be deployed? Watch our new webinar, Next Generation Ruggedized Military-Grade Video Encoding. In it, we review the key features of the Makito X4 Rugged video encoder, its use applications, and answer early questions about our newest ruggedized video encoder. Watch it for free, here.