The writing was on the wall for some time and effectively, Audinate anticipated this announcement when it revealed a cooperation with QSC for the Q-SYS Ecosystem at ISE 2019. While the availability of silicon-based solutions and ready-to-implement boards and hardware platforms was critical for manufacturers, leading to the massive adoption of Dante as an industry "de facto" audio networking standard, with the evolution towards video transport and the adoption of fully IP infrastructures, a software-based solution was essential for future expansion. Software-based, networked solutions are the most cost-effective and flexible way to design and deliver AV products, shifting the industry from purpose-built hardware.
According to Audinate, these new software-based solutions give manufacturers and developers the ability to deploy Dante into products where it wasn’t previously feasible, in ways that weren’t previously possible. Dante can now be deployed in products where either the price point or form factor made integrating dedicated Dante hardware challenging. Dante as software also provides exponentially more flexibility, with the potential to enable new capabilities like Dante being deployed retroactively to products already in the field, the ability to add new features and functions to products on the fly, and the possibility for manufacturers, integrators or customers to configure the number of Dante channels they want for a particular application.
Both Dante Embedded Platform and Dante Application Library each enable complete interoperability with more than 2,000 Dante-enabled audio products already on the market. Audinate is introducing these new software products in conjunction with several lead customers, who will be demonstrating their solutions at the upcoming InfoComm 2019 show in Orlando.
QSC will begin to deploy the Dante Embedded Platform within the Q-SYS Ecosystem to enable native software-based Dante audio channels. The effort is part of the strategic partnership between the two companies announced at ISE 2019.
Zoom Video Communications, a leader in video-first unified communications, has teamed up with Audinate to integrate the Dante Application Library into its Zoom Rooms application for video meetings.
Commenting on today’s multiple announcements, Lee Ellison, CEO of Audinate noted: “This is an inflection point in the AV industry. The decreasing costs, increasing computational power and improved flexibility of the software approach will enable manufacturers and developers to deploy Dante into a plethora of next generation AV products. The option to go with a software-based implementation will enable OEMs to add Dante functionality to existing products without a major redesign and will drive further growth for networked Dante endpoints.”
Dante Embedded Platform for X86 and ARM Applications
Leading manufacturers are already delivering AV products built on powerful commodity x86 and ARM computing hardware running Linux, giving their users the flexibility of software-based DSPs and mixers in robust, compact packages. Dante Embedded Platform is designed for these OEMs, providing cost-effective Dante networking with minimal additional hardware, immediately giving users connectivity to the largest ecosystem of AV-over-IP devices in the world.
Dante Embedded Platform will offer two options for manufacturers: an SDK with validation tools will eliminate costly guesswork by allowing OEMs to easily qualify existing x86 and ARM based products for Dante performance requirements. For new products under development, Audinate will also provide complete reference designs for popular ARM SoC chipsets such as the Analog Devices ADSP-SC589 and NXP i.MX 8M Mini QuadLite.
Dante Application Library for Mac and PC Applications
Dante Application Library for Windows and MacOS gives developers the ability to build Dante functionality directly into their products. Each instance is wholly contained within each application and not shared with other resources, allowing multiple Dante-enabled applications to run simultaneously on a single computer with complete independence.
With Dante Application Library, developers can integrate Dante device discovery and subscriptions directly into their conferencing, recording, lecture capture and media playback products for a seamless “one-stop-shop” setup experience. Manufacturers will be able to leverage the Dante Application Library to implement instant access to thousands of popular Dante-enabled products that include microphones, DSPs, amplifiers and powered speakers.
Analog Devices and Audinate
Analog Devices have partnered with Audinate to introduce a new software-based Dante reference design kit for its popular ADSP-SC589 DSP + ARM processor. Audinate also announced they are now a member of the Analog Devices Alliances program.
Products like the ADSP-SC589, combine the powerful SHARC DSP with an ARM CPU to enable manufacturers to develop entire families of innovative products upon the same platform. With Dante Embedded Platform, Audinate provides a cost-effective and flexible means to deliver Dante technology in modern software-driven devices. With minimal additional hardware and low marginal costs, Dante Embedded Platform fits where other hardware solutions won’t, enabling access to thousands of available Dante-enabled products from hundreds of OEMs in countless installations.
The Dante Embedded Platform Reference Design Kit for ADSP-SC589 enables OEMs to design high performance, software-based Dante products with confidence. The ADSP-SC589 SoC pairs two powerful SHARC DSP cores with an ARM Cortex CPU and allows developers to focus on their own algorithm and UI development on a powerful software-based platform with a highly optimized software and tools ecosystem. Together, innovative new networked audio products can rapidly be created with tools and resources from these trusted sources.
“Partnering with Analog Devices is a great opportunity for both companies to advance software-driven AV products,” notes Joshua Rush, SVP of Marketing and Products at Audinate. “The SHARC DSP platform is incredibly popular and powerful and is used in hundreds of audio products. Those products built around SHARC can now add Dante as software, making the most in-demand AV-over-IP solution easy to implement and more readily available for customers.”
"With so many Professional AV companies combining Dante's AV over IP technology in systems with SHARC and SigmaDSP products from Analog Devices, collaborating with Audinate is a win for our joint customers. A more integrated solution enables far more form factors and simplified system designs to get products to market as quickly as possible," says Jen Lloyd, Vice President Healthcare & Consumer Systems for Analog Devices.
The Dante Reference Design Kit for ADSP-SC589 is expected to be available in Q4 2019.
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