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October 1998

Video Conferencing Products

This month's roundup features a variety of video conferencing products and solutions. For some people, these products represent but a step in the right direction, mere forerunners to some still unrealized evolution of video communications solutions of the future. To others, these are viable business solutions, already playing an important role in the day-to-day of corporate communications.

The solutions presented in the following pages vary in their cost, functionality, and ability to interoperate with other systems. Some are designed for corporate conference room settings. Some are designed for single-user home PC environments. Some incorporate IP-based conferencing, others are designed to work over ISDN. Some were created with specific applications in mind, such as distance learning, or telemedicine. We cover a handful of the cameras that are available for these types of systems as well.

As with all of our roundups, these products are to be considered a starting point in your search for a video conferencing solution. Evaluate your needs, keeping in mind costs, potential benefits, and ease of use. Don't be afraid to ask the experts. The Web sites of the companies listed here are a terrific place to start your research. As always, education is the key to making informed purchasing decisions.

-Greg Galitzine

88, Inc.
2445 Mission College Blvd.
Santa Clara, California 95054
Web site: www.8x8.com

88, Inc, has recently announced the Via-IP broadband videophone, a development system for audio and video telephony over broadband Internet connections. Delivering full 30-fps video at VHS resolution, the Via-IP platform is being used by cable modem manufacturers, cable television system operators, and telecommunications companies to develop broadband Internet telephone systems. The 88 Via-IP broadband videophone is a small TV set-top device that uses a standard TV for display and a touch-tone phone for audio, dialing, and control. No PC is required to operate the Via-IP unit. Full compliance with the H.323 protocol ensures interoperability with other solutions, such as Microsoft's NetMeeting.

Based on 88's VCP processor architecture, the Via-IP system supports all of the relevant ITU standards for Internet telephony, including the H.261 and H.263 video codecs; G.711, G.723, G.728, and G.729 audio codecs; Q.931 call signaling protocol; RAS gatekeeper signaling protocol; and H.245 call control protocol. The solution also offers echo cancellation and a complete TCP/IP stack. For more information, call 408-727-1885 or visit the company's Web site at www.8x8.com.

AG Communication Systems
2500 West Utopia Rd.
Phoenix, AZ 85027
Web site: www.agcs.com

AG Communication Systems' ATIUM VIA 188 is a corporate video conferencing solution designed to allow business professionals to communicate over distances in a cost-effective manner. The ATIUM VIA 188 offers simultaneous data and MPEG-2 (motion picture experts group 2) compressed video over ATM (asynchronous transfer mode technology). It has local- and wide-area network (LAN/WAN) connectivity and does not need to be connected to a switch to operate. It has multi-point add/drop capabilities that consume less bandwidth per application, so the user can get maximum use out of each line. VIA 188 supports multiple ATM MPEG decoders per box, so fewer boxes are needed for a network.

The VIA 188 accommodates video, audio, and embedded data applications for the network. AG Communications has also recently announced the availability of SVCs (switched virtual circuits) across the complete line of ATIUM products enabling the product line to work in any SVC-based ATM network. The solution can be used for a variety of applications, including distance learning, remote arraignment, telemedicine, and business conferencing. For more information, contact the company at 1-888-888-AGCS or visit their Web site at www.agcs.com.

Accord Video Telecommunications, Inc.
500 Northridge Rd., Ste. 200
Atlanta, GA 30350
Web site: www.accord.co.il

Accord's MGC-100 multi-point control unit is based on a telco-grade architecture that offers numerous advantages to users and conference operators. The MGC-100 offers support of endpoints with different bit rates, frame rates, resolutions, and audio compression algorithms in the same conference. Designed with hot swappable, self-configuring modules, a high-speed multimedia bus, universal slots, and redundant power supplies, the MGC-100 enables a highly scalable multi-point conferencing environment. The MGC-100 supports up to 80 sites, up to 14 continuous presence/transcoding conferences, and up to 42 continuous presence/transcoding participants.

Recently, Accord announced that the company would integrate RADVision's H.323 Protocol Stack, in order to develop an H.323-compliant MGC-100. Using the RADVision H.323 Protocol Stack, Accord will provide gateway and multi-point conferencing capabilities for both IP and ISDN-based video conferencing users. All of Accord's advanced functionality, including continuous presence, five-way transcoding, T.120 data conferencing, and conference management capabilities, will be supported in the H.323 environment. For more information, contact Accord Video Telecommunications at 770-641-4400 or visit the company's Web site at www.accord.co.il.

Video Access Node (VaN)
3393 Octavius Dr., Ste. 102
Santa Clara, CA 95054
Web site: www.fvc.com

FVC's Video Access Node (VaN) implements broadcast quality video using H.310 MPEG-2 over ATM. The VaN's MPEG-2 over ATM video, with support for either 25 Mb/s or 155 Mb/s ATM connectivity, is comparable to the quality provided by VHS and laser disk systems. The VaN can be implemented on both campus ATM networks, and across the long-haul ATM networks that service providers are now installing for wide-area access. The system brings video conferencing, video-on-demand, and video broadcast to applications requiring high-quality video, such as distance learning and telemedicine.

The VaN supports First Virtual's Video Locator software, which allows users to schedule and manage calls through a Web-based interface. The Video Locator provides call management for video conferences across multiple standards on the same network, including H.310, H.320, H.323, and low bit-rate endpoints. The VaN's own multi-point capabilities support up to a four-way multi-point conference using a single encoder and multiple decoders. As part of First Virtual's complete video networking solutions, the VaN supports video-on-demand using the V-Cache, and multicast using the V-Caster. The VaN is available as a fully integrated roll-about system, complete with cart, camera, and necessary peripherals, or as a stand-alone codec. For more information, call 408-567-7200 or visit the company's Web site at www.fvc.com.

TeamStation System 4.0
Intel Corporation
5200 N.E. Elam Young Pkwy.
Hillsboro, OR 97124-6497
Web site: www.intel.com

Intel's TeamStation System 4.0 is a conference room workstation that combines video conferencing, Internet access, corporate network access, and PC applications in one convenient system. The product is billed as the first workstation to feature H.323- and H.320-compliant video conferencing in the same system, the ability to both receive and transmit high-quality video across either a LAN or ISDN. TeamStation delivers up to 30 fps (frames per second) full common intermediate format (FCIF) video at 128 Kbps and 384 Kbps, and operates at data rates up to 400 Kbps, full duplex, on a LAN. Furthermore, Intel includes the H.261/263+ filtering algorithms for video smoothness and clarity.

TeamStation tightly integrates Microsoft's T.120 NetMeeting data conferencing tools, thus enabling window management for seamless video and data collaboration within a single call. For a more in-depth look at this product, as reviewed by TMC Labs, please refer to Internet Telephony's September issue (Volume 1, Number 3), page 48. For more information, contact Intel at 800-788-2286 or visit the company's Web site at www.intel.com

LANscape 2.1
Intelect Visual Communications
645 Fifth Ave., 17th Fl.
New York, NY 10022
Web site: www.videoconferencing.com

LANscape 2.1 uses Wavelet video compression to provide a smooth picture at up to 30 frames per second with fully synchronized CD-quality sound. Wavelet technology reduces the network load by selectively transmitting and reconstructing only those wavelengths of light that are most significant to the human eye, thus achieving compression ratios of 1:1 to 350:1.

LANscape 2.1 can run over an existing LAN using IP as the transmission protocol, which means that it can run on any IP transport network including Ethernet, Fast Ethernet, T1/E1, Frame Relay, ATM, and SONET. LANscape 2.1 offers software selectable network transmission protocols (i.e., IP Multicast (IPMC), IP, and UDP). The product eliminates the need for a Multipoint Conferencing Unit (MCU) to engage in a video conference with more than one person. Multipoint conferencing is inherent in the software, and since LANscape 2.1 offers multiple windows, if you are conferencing with more than one person, you can view each of them in individually scaled video windows. Lastly, because LANscape 2.1 offers IP Multicast support, you can actually reduce network load associated when video conferencing with multiple participants. IP Multicast allows you to send one message, one time to all participants. For more information, contact the company at 212-317-9600 or visit their Web site at www.videoconferencing.com.

MultiPoint Conferencing Unit v.5.0
Lucent Technologies
211 Mt. Airy Rd., Rm. 3C348
Basking Ridge, NJ 07920
Web site: www.lucent.com

Lucent's MultiPoint Conferencing Unit (MCU) is a multipoint audio, video, and data conference bridge that connects multiple locations around the world. It enables up to 25 locations to fully participate in a video conference, allowing participants to view up to 16 sites simultaneously on one screen. The MCU connects to public and private networks, and can be used behind a digital PBX or connect directly to video endpoints. Users can take advantage of the MCU's Conference Reservation and Control System, which includes scheduling and management capabilities. Another feature of the Lucent offering is SpeedMatching - this allows endpoints transmitting video at different bandwidths to participate in the same video conference.

The MCU supports the H.320 video conferencing and T.120 data conferencing standards. Release 5.0 includes the following enhancements:

  • Panoramic screen layout.
  • Incorporated H.263: Allows MCU to support H.263 endpoints, such as Polycom.
  • Conference Manager enables easier management of a conference.
  • OpCenter SP: Designed for service providers, enables real-time remote monitoring and control of conferences.

For more information, visit the company's Web site at www.lucent.com.

LAN Video Gateway
Madge Networks
625 Industrial Way West
Eatontown, NJ 07724
Web site: www.madge.com

Madge Networks' LAN Video Gateway is fully compatible with the ITU H.320 video standard used to transmit video over ISDN and high-speed serial connections such as V.35. On the LAN side, the gateway is fully compliant with the H.323 standard for carrying video, voice, and data over local-area networks using the IP protocol and is interoperable with H.323 video codecs. A separate version of the gateway is available which allows existing H.320 desktop video codecs to be connected to the LAN.

In addition to acting as a link between the LAN and the PSTN, the gateway has an integral gatekeeper, which provides call control for video conferencing sessions. Individual LAN stations can be addressed by video telephone numbers or, under H.323, individual users' names may be used when dialing. Flexible PBX functions (i.e., call transfer and variable call forward) are built in and accessible from most H.323 and H.320 video codecs. Through the use of IP multicasting, one LAN station can broadcast video to many other LAN attached video codecs for training purposes, employee communications, and urgent video briefings. For more information, contact the company at 732-389-5700 or visit the company's Web site at www.madge.com.

Diamond Video Series 9100
Mitsubishi Electronics America
5665 Plaza Dr.
Cypress, CA 90630
Web site: www.mitsubishi-imaging.com

The Diamond Video Series 9100 is a complete Pentium-based video conferencing system running DOS and Windows. The system includes a camera, media processor, system interface, control panel (or keyboard and mouse), and software. A unique in-band data port allows unrestricted collaborative computing and permits a variety of interactive applications such as business conferencing, telemedicine, distance learning, and video arraignment.

The Series 9100 media processor integrates, distributes, and manipulates multiple audio, video, and data sources. The Media Processor is based on an Intel standard PCI/ISA Bus, and features a VGA to NTSC scan conversion card, 3.5" floppy disk drive, 6x minimum CD-ROM drive, seven inputs, and seven outputs. The processor includes an integrated codec board, which supports an operating bandwidth of 56 to 1,984 Kbps. International video conferencing standards are met as the Diamond Video Series 9100 Media Processor complies with all CCITT/ITU standards and is compatible with ISDN BRI (2B+D), dual RS-499/V.35, and RS-366 (dialing) communications. For more information, contact the company at 800-843-2515 or visit their Web site at www.mitsubishi-imaging.com.

Nogatech, Inc.
20300 Stevens Creek Blvd.
Cupertino, CA 95014
Web site: www.nogatech.com

The Nogatech PCMCIA type II ConferenceCard is a one-card video solution for high-performance, real-time conferencing. A mobile solution for distance learning, voice-over document sharing, presentations, and remote video capture applications, Nogatech's ConferenceCard works together with many popular conferencing software packages, including Microsoft's NetMeeting, Intel's Internet Video Phone, PictureTel's Live Phone, and White Pine Software's Enhanced CU-SeeMe. The ConferenceCard provides both full-duplex sound and video capture capabilities to enable quality video and two-way audio conferencing directly on a notebook computer.

Offering full-motion video display and capture at up to 30 frames per second and a resolution of up to 320x240 (.avi format), the ConferenceCard is fully compatible with Microsoft Video For Windows and Windows Sound System as well as most video and audio conferencing software. Nogatech also bundles the ConferenceCard with a camera, headset, a cable for audio inputs/outputs and video inputs, and free video conferencing software, offering the solution under the name Mobile Video Pro, a total video and audio conferencing solution for notebook computer users. For more information, contact Nogatech at 408-342-1400 or visit the company's Web site at www.nogatech.com.

Symposium Multimedia Conferencing 5.1
Nortel (Northern Telecom)
2221 Lakeside Blvd.
Richardson, TX 75082
Web site: www.nortel.com

Nortel's Symposium Multimedia Conferencing 5.1 includes several new user features and an improved PCI video codec that provides up to 30 frames per second (fps) in full CIF mode. The new release retains the full feature set from the previous version (version 5.0): H.320 video conferencing, T.120 data applications, and other features including whiteboarding, application sharing, file transfer, chat, directory dialing, call logging, and a variety of connectivity options.

Symposium Multimedia Conferencing 5.1 offers onscreen camera control (requires a pan/tilt/zoom camera at the endpoint), and a presenter tool with the ability to store preset camera and audio control settings for quick switching during a video conference. The presenter tool also allows the storing of preset documents and applications for easy opening during a conference.

Other features include advanced call diagnostics - updated in real-time during a conference -- for both transmit and receive signals; and general improvements such as the ability to share Power Video's video broadcasts or stored video clip viewing during a conference. For more information, contact Nortel at 1-800-4NORTEL or visit the company's Web site at www.nortel.com.

Front Row
40 Airport Pkwy.
San Jose, CA 95110
Web site: www.onetouch.com

ONE TOUCH Systems' Front Row is a Web-based application that delivers real-time audio, video, and Web knowledge to interactive distance learning (IDL) students at their desktops via corporate intranets. Front Row provides the same instructor/learner interactivity as a broadcast TV classroom via patented Response Keypads, which permit participants to speak directly with the presenter and respond to multiple choice or alphanumeric questions. The presenter can also guide students through Web content by synchronizing and updating the participants' browsers in unison.

Front Row minimizes the impact of traffic on corporate networks by incorporating the latest compression and transmission standards. Front Row delivers 15 fps video to the desktop using less than 3 percent of the bandwidth of a typical 10Base-T Ethernet network by employing the H.263 video compression standard and the G.711 audio compression standard in the Intel MDS streaming multimedia framework. For more information, contact ONE TOUCH at 408-436-4600 or visit the company's Web site at www.onetouch.com.

CONFERease 900
OutReach Technologies
9101 Guilford Rd.
Columbia, MD 21046
Web site: www.outreachtech.com

The CONFERease 900, from Outreach Technologies, is a T.120-compliant, real-time, multi-point Windows NT conferencing server designed to combine business-quality audio communications, document conferencing software, and teleconference management software into a single, turnkey system. Aimed at enterprises and service providers alike, the CONFERease 900 supports from 24 to 96 users and leverages communications infrastructure such as existing phone (PSTN/PBX) and TCP/IP networks.

CONFERease 900 enables users to maximize conference productivity. For example, while engaging in a conversation through the synchronous voice connection, participants can share applications or documents and make and review changes in real time. Furthermore, CONFERease 900 features multi-level security options, allowing users to schedule and instantly create conferences, view conference calendars, change conference settings, disconnect participants, create custom IVR messages, and generate activity and usage reports from any designated network desktop. As an added security measure, administrator and conductor capabilities are password-enabled. For more information, contact the company at 410-792-8000 or visit their Web site at www.outreachtech.com.

PictureTel Corporation
100 Minuteman Rd., M/S 721
Andover, MA 01810
Web site: www.picturetel.com

PictureTel's LiveLAN visual collaboration solution enables users to meet in virtual conference rooms and perform H.323-compliant, business-quality audio, video, and data sharing over their existing corporate IP infrastructure or any IP network. Release 3.1 of LiveLAN, LiveManager, and LiveGateway offer enhancements that allow customers to receive video at up to 30 frames per second at very high network speeds. LiveLAN and LiveManager also support FORE Systems' native ATM, designed to provide Quality of Service (QoS) and expand available network options.

Other LiveLAN 3.1 features include network transmission speeds up to 768 Kbps, support for Microsoft Internet Locator Service (ILS) browsing; and Lotus Notes integration, enabling LiveLAN to initiate a call to another client listed in a Lotus Notes address book. New features of LiveManager 3.1 include network status monitoring via the Web, the ability to share LiveGateway resources between two or more LiveManagers, and the integration of LiveManager and LiveGateway consoles. Upgrades to LiveGateway 3.1 enable customizable greetings and improved T.120 data sharing capabilities. For more information, contact the company at 978-292-5000 or visit their Web site at www.picturetel.com.

ViewStation V.35
Polycom, Inc.
2584 Junction Ave.
San Jose, CA 95134
Web site: www.polycom.com

Polycom has recently announced their new ViewStation V.35, a video conferencing system that delivers 768 Kbps full-motion video capabilities and supports Microsoft's NetMeeting. Augmenting the Polycom ViewStation 128 and ViewStation 512 products that support ISDN networks, ViewStation V.35 enables customers on both public and private networks worldwide to deploy ViewStation throughout their organizations. ViewStation V.35 provides full-motion 768 Kbps video over digital networks such as T1, E1, and PRI and also includes H.331 broadcast mode support to allow users to transmit high-quality broadcast video transmissions. With Microsoft NetMeeting support, users can share data and applications real-time in-band.

The product's support of RS-366 allows customers the option to place either dialed or non-dialed calls. Furthermore, the product includes dual monitor support, a voice-tracking camera, integrated presentation capabilities, and remote management capabilities. Fully H.323 ready, ViewStation's innovative embedded Web server enables easy access for remote system management and diagnostics, as well as simple software upgrades via the Internet or intranet. For more information, call 408-526-9000 or visit the company's Web site at www.polycom.com.

Meeting Pak Plus
Prolink Computer, Inc.
15336 E. Valley Blvd.
City of Industry, CA 91746
Web site: www.prolink-usa.com

Prolink's Pixelview Meeting Pak Plus is a video conferencing solution incorporating the Brooktree 848 chipset. The solution is PCI 2.1-compliant and offers plug and play capabilities. In addition to supporting NTSC, PAL, and SECAM video inputs as well as Composite and S-Video inputs, the Meeting Pak Plus offers a motion display of up to 30 frames per second, relayed through the PCI master bus interface where the video resolution is boosted to 24-bit 320x240 pixels. The solution supports Microsoft's Video for Windows as well as Windows 95.

The Meeting Pak Plus consists of a TV/FM tuner and capture card combination utilizing the Brooktree 848 chipset, a Phillips brand analog camera, a microphone, the necessary installation drivers, and bundled video conferencing software. The video conferencing software allows users to see and hear each other on their PCs through the Internet or via standard telephone lines. For more information, contact the company at 626-369-3833 or visit their Web site at www.prolink-usa.com.

575 Corporate Dr., Suite 420
Mahwah, NJ 07430
Web site: www.radvision.com

The L2W-323 is a self-contained standalone gateway designed to translate between the H.323 and H.320 protocols, and convert multimedia information from circuit-switched to H.323 IP packets. On the PSTN side, the product supports either voice-only calls, or H.320 video conferencing sessions. The L2W-323 enables users to exchange audio, video, and data in real-time from 64 Kbps to 384 Kbps. The L2W-323 supports up to eight concurrent voice calls or four concurrent video calls between users on different networks. Users of an L2W-323-enabled network also benefit from full end-to-end support for T.120 sessions, provided all terminals support the standard in their collaborative applications.

The L2W-323, working in conjunction with an embedded RADVision H.323 GateKeeper, provides the functionality of a multimedia PBX, allowing internetwork calls, direct inward dialing, call forward and transfer, and custom call control via IVR and DTMF signaling. Real-time routing (or bypass routing) between network segments is provided. Optional hardware modules perform real-time audio transcoding between G.723 and G.711, as well as G.728 and G.711. For more information, contact the company at 201-529-4300 or visit their Web site at www.radvision.com.

Hicom Xpress IP Video
Siemens Business Communications
4900 Old Ironsides Dr.
Santa Clara, CA 95054
Web site: www.siemenscom.com

Siemens Business Communications has introduced the Hicom Xpress IP Video, a video conferencing solution that enables video calls between LAN-based and ISDN-based PC video conferencing systems. The Hicom Xpress IP Video solution enables the following applications: distance learning, telesales, telemedicine, and remote patient consultation. Hicom Xpress IP Video is a component of Siemens' recently announced Multimedia-IP LAN solution.

Siemens has partnered with RADVision and VCON to deliver this solution. The Hicom Express IP Video product is comprised of VCON's voice, video, and gateway system operating on an IP network-connected PC, a video client from VCON that runs on a LAN-connected PC, and a video gateway from RADVision that connects the video clients to a Siemens Hicom communications server. The Hicom Xpress IP Video enables connectivity between LAN video and ISDN video through the RADVision video gateway. Compatibility exists between disparate video products as long as they conform to either the H.323 or H.320 industry standards for video conferencing. For more information, contact Siemens at 408-492-2000 or visit the company's Web site at www.siemenscom.com.

MediaConnect 8000
17440 N. Dallas Pkwy., Ste. 200
Dallas, TX 75287
Web site: www.vcon.com

VCON's MediaConnect 8000 offers cost-effective, real-time group video conferencing over IP and ISDN. The group meeting system combines a 3BRI single-board solution with multimedia capabilities up to 768 Kbps LAN and 384 Kbps ISDN conferencing. The MediaConnect 8000 addresses several key end-user issues: Television-quality video with audio synchronization; Document sharing without eliminating video quality; and Multimedia capabilities.

Features of the MediaConnect 8000 include voice-only calls over IP, video and audio conferencing up to 384 Kbps ISDN and 768 Kbps LAN at 30 fps, and T.120 data conferencing. The system runs over multiple communication protocols, including LAN, WAN, ATM, ISDN, and frame relay. The MediaConnect 8000 system includes a codec, 29" SVGA monitor, 200 MHz MMX Intel-based PC, roll-about cart, a 10/100 IP or ISDN network connection, wireless keyboard, pan/tilt/zoom camera, speakers, and a microphone. Furthermore, a 32-bit Software Developer's Kit (OCX 32bit) is available for customized application integration with VCON's MediaConnect and desktop systems. For more information, contact the company at 972-735-9001 or visit their Web site at www.vcon.com.

Encounter Family (Network Servers)
VideoServer, Inc.
63 Third Ave.
Burlington, MA 01803
Web site: www.videoserver.com

VideoServer's Encounter Family of IP (Internet Protocol) conferencing products is designed to deliver mainstream video conferencing over the Internet. The Encounter Family IP conferencing solution offers businesses clear audio, video, and data collaboration over the Internet, optimizing the available bandwidth and integrating essential multi-point services, gateway functionality, and conference management. The solution is comprised of three products: Encounter NetServer, Encounter NetGate, and Encounter GateKeeper.

The Encounter NetServer is an H.323 Multimedia Conference Server (MCS) for LAN-based conferencing applications, and the Encounter NetGate is a gateway server connecting ISDN and IP conferencing endpoints. Both the NetServer and NetGate are built on the popular Windows NT/Intel architecture and are fully compliant with the international standard for IP-based conferencing (H.323). The NetGate also supports the international T.120 standard for data conferencing. These products ensure interoperability between conferencing endpoints from Microsoft, Intel, PictureTel, VCON, and others. The family also includes Encounter GateKeeper, which controls access and bandwidth utilization. For more information, contact the company at 617-229-2000 or visit their Web site at www.videoserver.com.

MeetingPoint 3.5
White Pine Software, Inc.
542 Amherst Street
Nashua, NH 03063
Web site: www.wpine.com

MeetingPoint cost-effectively delivers multimedia group interaction over the Internet or any IP network, such as a corporate intranet. The product integrates into existing networks, and can be configured and administered remotely from any computer with a Web browser. Furthermore, MeetingPoint even manages the amount of bandwidth required for group interaction and takes full advantage of IP multicast technology.

White Pine has recently announced MeetingPoint version 3.5. Some of the audio subsystem enhancements offered in this new version include G.711 and G.723 audio mixing, mixing of multiple audio streams (enabling "hands free" conferencing), and silence detection/background noise suppression. Video subsystem improvements include support for full CIF video (in addition to QCIF) and video switching based on amplitude detection.

MeetingPoint 3.5 is now optimized to work with Intel ProShare, PictureTel LiveLAN, and Microsoft NetMeeting clients. For more information, contact White Pine at 603-886-9050, or visit the company's Web site at www.wpine.com.

Zydacron, Inc.
7 Perimeter Rd.
Manchester, NH 03103
Web site: www.zydacron.com

Zydacron's OnWAN350 is a Peripheral Component Interconnect (PCI)-based desktop video conferencing package that can run at up to 30 frames-per-second (fps). An integrated desktop video conferencing solution with ISDN-BRI on a single PCI-compatible codec board, OnWAN350 features the latest AVP-III Video/Audio Processor chipset from Lucent Technologies. Lucent's AVP-III Video/Audio Processor is one of the industry's most complete video conferencing solutions, offering video, audio, acoustic echo cancellation, and communication protocol functions. The AVP-III codec chip supports standards-based, two-way, real-time video conferencing over both analog and digital lines.

The product is designed to provide a complete communications solution offering T.120 support for data collaboration as well as full Microsoft NetMeeting integration. Other OnWAN350 features include:

  • Onboard ISDN communications with S/T and U interface.
  • Built-in ISDN analyzer software.
  • Call size up to 128 Kbps.
  • MCU support.
  • End user diagnostics.

For more information, contact Zydacron at 603-647-1000 or visit the company's Web site at www.zydacron.com


QuickCam VC
Connectix Corp.
2955 Campus Dr.
San Mateo, CA 94403
Web site: www.connectix.com

Connectix Corporation's QuickCam allows users to communicate visually with standards-based video conferencing via the Internet or modem-to-modem, or with still images or video clips attached to e-mail. The QuickCam VC supports the TWAIN standard for compatibility with popular software for still image acquisition, and as a Video for Windows device, QuickCam VC is also compatible with popular software requiring video. QuickCam VC is available for Windows 95 and Windows 98.

The QuickCam VC camera offers the following features:

  • A CIF (352x288 pixels) CCD (Charge Coupled Device) from Sharp Corporation;
  • Frame rates of over 15 frames per second at CIF on a Pentium 166 or better;
  • New USB interface technology from Lucent Technologies; and
  • An adjustable focus lens and a 6-foot cable.

The accompanying Connectix Videophone 3.0 Software includes:

  • Enhanced video conferencing capabilities over a LAN or modem-to-modem;
  • PictureTel's H.324 standard technology for interoperability with any other H.324 standard user; and
  • Compatibility with Microsoft's NetMeeting for Internet video conferencing using H.323.

For more information, contact Connectix at 650-571-5100 or visit the company's Web site at www.connectix.com.

CameraMan 3-CCD
ParkerVision, Inc.
8493 Baymeadows Way
Jacksonville, FL 32256
Web site: www.parkervision.com

ParkerVision's Cameraman 3-CCD is a broadcast-quality camera system that fits the bill for applications ranging from video conferencing to video production to live video broadcast presentations. An evolution of ParkerVision's 1-CCD camera, but with added features, higher resolution, and more accurate color for those applications requiring higher performance, the 3-CCD Camera Systems incorporates 1/2-inch IT Power HAD CCDs with 380,000 effective picture elements. This improved HAD sensor structure drastically reduces smear level by 20dB while attaining a high sensitivity of F9.5 at 2000 lux. This permits high-quality images in difficult lighting conditions.

The CameraMan provides advanced camera control functions such as linear matrix, shading compensation, master pedestal, gamma selection, and selectable knee position and detail level. Optional features, such as autoTRACK technology, give presenters the freedom to walk around the room while the camera automatically follows every move. The combination of the Cameraman's CCD technology, improved electronic circuitry, and advanced video processing results in a signal-to-noise ratio of 60dB. For more information, contact the company at 904-737-1367 or visit their Web site at www.parkervision.com.

CamKit 512N
Silicon Vision
40523 Encyclopedia Cir.
Fremont, CA 94538
Web site: www.siliconvision.com

Silicon Vision's CamKit 512N is a digital video PC camera kit for desktop computers and is designed to facilitate applications such as video conferencing and video e-mail. Using innovative iVision digital technology, the Silicon Vision camera dramatically reduces memory consumption and CPU load during video processing. These improvements deliver exceptionally high frame rates in full (16 million) color at up to 30 fps at 512x492 resolution. Fully compliant with Microsoft Video for Windows, the camera features a tripod mount, focus wheel, and privacy shutter. Optional black and white mode delivers higher resolution when color is unnecessary.

The offering works with many video conferencing and video capture software solutions, and in fact, the CamKit comes prebundled with the following software:

  • Silicon Vision's OneTouch;
  • Prescient Systems' GOTCHA!
  • Stefra Corp.'s Video Control; and
  • VDOnet Corp.'s VDOPhone Professional video conferencing software and VDO LivePlayer!

For more information, contact the company at 510-770-2300 or visit their Web site at www.siliconvision.com.

Vista Imaging, Inc.
521 Taylor Way
San Carlos, CA 94070
Web site: www.vistaimaging.com

Vista Imaging, Inc.'s ViCAM is a high-speed, high-resolution desktop color digital video camera for IBM PC compatible computers. ViCAM interfaces to a standard parallel port and produces fast, 30 frame per second video in full color in support of motion video applications, and features high-quality, 24-bit true color still image capture in resolutions ranging from 160x120 to 1280x960. It also offers support for up to 16.8 million true colors and 256 grayscale formats. In addition, ViCAM features the ability to capture images in extremely low-light environments, and includes an IEEE-1284 compatible parallel pass-through device to allow printing from the same parallel port without the need to disconnect the camera to access the printer.

ViCAM comes equipped with viewer software that enables users to control all features of the camera, and includes standard TWAIN and AVI drivers as well. These drivers make the camera compatible with programs such as Adobe PhotoShop and Microsoft NetMeeting. For more information, contact Vista Imaging at 650-802-9685 or visit the company's Web site at www.vistaimaging.com.

C-it Pro
Xirlink, Inc.
2210 O'Toole Ave.
San Jose, CA 95131
Web site: www.xirlink.com

Xirlink has integrated their XVP500 digital video camera with video source input capabilities, thereby eliminating the need to install a video capture card. C-it Pro is a Universal Serial Bus digital camera that comes with the video capture card built-in. The camera features Xirlink's second-generation ViCE (Video Compression Engine) chip, which does on-the-fly compression within the camera, allowing the camera to achieve 30 fps in CIF resolution (352x288) in 24-bit or true color mode.

Xirlink also provides all the software you need to start video conferencing. The Xirlink Video Suite comes complete with a combination of some of the most popular video conferencing, desktop video editing, and desktop photo editing software. The software includes Microsoft NetMeeting, Xirlink H.324 video conferencing software, MGI VideoWave, MetaCreations Soap and Goo, ArcSoft's PhotoFantasy, and Reality Fusion's Live Screen Saver.

C-it takes advantage of native support for Microsoft's Windows 98 for USB, to provide users with instant plug and play functionality. For more information, contact Xirlink at 408-324-2100 or visit the company's Web site at www.xirlink.com.

Zoom Telephonics
207 South St.
Boston, MA 02111
Web site: www.zoomtel.com

The Zoom/Video Cam, a full-color full-motion digital camera for PCs, comes complete and ready to use with a Zoom/Video capture card, Windows 95 drivers, video application software, and a microphone. The Zoom/Video Cam plugs into the Zoom/Video capture card, which installs easily in any 16-bit ISA slot, enabling the Zoom/Video Cam to be used with a wide range of systems.

The Zoom/Video Cam's compliance with standards such as H.323 and H.324 assures compatibility with a wide range of video conferencing hardware and software. The product enables real-time video and video mail over standard phone lines or the Internet, the addition of moving or still images to almost any computer document or presentation, and participation in video chats or business meetings through the Internet. The Zoom/Video Cam uses an advanced CMOS array to provide high-resolution color live action video or point-and-click image capture, and the 50 wide-angle field of view lens can focus from 2 inches to infinity. For more information, contact Zoom Telephonics at 617-423-1072 or visit the company's Web site at www.zoomtel.com.

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