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Tandberg Launches C60 Codec

January 28, 2009 | Chris Payatagool


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Tandberg has introduced the company's latest HD videoconferencing codec dubbed the C60. This is essentially a little sister to the C90 introduced half a year ago - same fundamental technology and architecture but smaller 1U form factor, fewer I/O connections, and less cost. The essence of the product announcement is support for 1080p video (optional, with 720p standard), 20 kHz stereo audio, automatic gain control and noise reduction, and an embedded 4-way, 720p bridge with individual transcoding (also optional). There are some powerful collaboration capabilities as well (also optional) including support for UXGA and full 1080p HD and the ability to share up to three multimedia sources simultaneously. The MSRP for the base C60 is $21,900; software options include Tandberg's natural presenter (collaboration) package ($4K), the embedded MCU ($6K), and 1080p resolution ($4k).


Tandberg also announced a new set of Profile systems powered by the C60. These systems feature a very slick Scandinavian design and are available with a single 42" LCD monitor, a single 52" LCD monitor, or double 52" LCD monitors. In all cases the camera is integrated into the display module and all cables are hidden.

Here's What I Think: The C60 is a strong addition to Tandberg's AV integrator product line. It's true that 1080p is rapidly becoming a mainstream buy in the consumer TV market, promoted by the TV vendors and supported by BlueRay DVDs. With today's consumer TV market situation and declining prices, why not buy a 1080p system and future-proof your purchase? For enterprise videoconferencing however, the situation is a little different since 1080p requires more bandwidth and exceeds the capability of most multipoint bridges in the field. So, how practical is it today, we're not sure. In fact, our research indicates that most 720p videoconferencing systems today are making real HD calls only a small minority of the time - for a variety of reasons.

On the other hand, systems like the C60 give AV integrators a real weapon for supporting customers with high end systems that approach telepresence in experience while also providing room design flexibility. Not every customer fits into a three-screen-six chair box.

Food for thought; what happens when you combine 1080p with a 75 or 85 inch (or larger) display and a wide angle lens on the camera?

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