Broadcast Video Production


Welcome to broadcast production page. Here you can learn about the wide range of solutions that Intel provides for the Production market. Production is a broad term that encompasses different workflows. For example, live events require shot selection, video editing, graphic insertions and final content production (either at a local venue or in a remote production facility). 

Production facilities can also contain their own studios where live content, file-based content, graphics, and other elements are all mixed, displayed and controlled to produce the final program. We enable all of these capabilities with its range of FPGA and IP solutions. 

Intel offers three classes of FPGA solutions at various levels of power consumption, speed and processing power to meet specific customer needs. High-end Intel® Stratix® series capabilites allow the highest performance, mid-range Intel Arria® series are in the instersection of power and performance, and lower end Intel® Cyclone® and  Intel® MAX® devices provide low cost and power while maintaining a significant level of performance. 

IP Solutions

IP Core routers Server Storage Editors
Video and image processing (VIP II) Functions (4K scalers, mixers, DIL) X X   X
SDI II Next Generation SDI Video Interface (12G)  X X X X
DisplayPort X X   X
SMPTE 2022 Macnica X X X X
SMPTE 2022 Coveloz  X X X X
10G/1G Ethernet-AVB Video Endpoint X X X X
Audio Ethernet-AVB Endpoint X X X X
DVI  X X   X
MIPI       X
PCI-e / DMA   X X X
MPEG2   X   X
JPEG2k   X   X
TICO   X   X
H.264   X   X
H.265   X   X
Camera Processing (ISP, Video Analytics)        
SD Card Interface        
HDD/SSD Interface (SAS/SATA) X      

Converter Box

In the broadcast market, there is a tremendous need to convert from one format to another. Intel's plug-and-play solution offerings allow the equipment manufacturer to easily create many flavors of products featuring the latest video standards. Our solutions can bi-directionally convert between any combinations of the following:

  • Connectivity standards (including SDI, HDMI, DisplayPort, SMPTE 2022, Analog Video)
  • XLR and BNC for digital audio
  • 4:3 and 16:9 aspect ratios
  • Interlaced to progressive scan
  • Frame rates
  • Analog audio and digital audio
  • Video resolutions
  • Video color spaces


Routers are used extensively in broadcast applications. They are often dedicated to the distribution of video, audio, or RF modulated signals for signal monitoring and analysis.

Routers consist of an input stage, crosspoint, and output stage. Most have the ability to direct any input to one or more output on a fully programmable basis. While enterprise-level routers offer the most inputs and outputs (they serve as the hub for the movement of video and audio within the production facility), Video routers are often designed to switch video that has been packetized as SDI, DisplayPort or HDMI video, or video that has been encapsulated in DVB-ASI, MPEG-2 (SMPTE ST 310), MPEG-4, SMPTE 2022 or IP data streams. 

Production switchers are distinguished by the number inputs and outputs, control sections, image and audio processing capabilities and integration into the entire production workflow and library of content. They perform hard cuts between cameras, mixes between two videos, and keying operations. Video, graphics, and mattes are input to the production switcher where an operator can select them to go to the program output or to preview or multiviewer outputs. Production switchers also perform keying (compositing) operations where a source object (created from a green screen camera set-up, for example) is placed inside a different background graphic or video. This is typically done with content on a separate key bus in the M/E (Mix/Effects) section of the control panel, which can then be selected for the program output channel. Additional overlays in the form of text and graphics are typically inserted last in a downstream keying section on the outgoing program (clean feed). More sophisticated production switchers will have additional capabilities for auxiliary outputs, digital video effects (DVE) and more. Digital video effects include item such as resize, rotate, position and scale to create picture-in-picture or multi-layer outputs.

Other important features for a video production router/switcher include genlocking, switching of audio, local and remote control, direct output of video to monitors or multiviewers, and integration with a plant-wide control software management system. Furthermore, audio routers need to support digital AES audio or analog audio switching, plus conversion for A-to-D or D-to-A. Fiber optic input-output modules may also be needed for long distance distribution in the optical domain.

Intel® FPGAs are used to create the functionality and fabric of the router and switcher. Once the architecture is determined, the number of input and output nodes and processing requirements will often determine which FPGA is right for your application. For more information, read the product web page or visit our Documentation web page


Servers in the broadcast market are available in a different number of configurations. Common architectures include racks of CPUs often accelerated by GPUs and FPGAs. Intel® FPGAs and IP solutions can provide coprocessor functionality that can dramatically accelerate the execution of algorithms and applications, increasing throughput and reducing CPU power required. Furthermore, Intel FPGAs offer certain advantages over GPUs when it comes to perform CPU offloading. The performance per watt is dramatically reduced through the parallelism of FPGAs. The algorithm only needs to be optimized once and it can be migrated easily to higher performance devices. The flexible transceiver capabilities allow for the integration of complete solutions.

Learn how Intel’s OpenCL™ toolflow enables software engineers to program on FPGA without requiring a board.

For more information, click in one of our products' website, visit our Documentation web page or contact a representative.

Video Editing

Video content editing can be done in a production facility or in standalone studios. The editing suite contains all the equipment and video and audio tools needed to ingest/access, edit, play back, and store the finished product. A typical editing suite will include:

  • Broadcast display monitor (one or two)
  • Studio quality speakers
  • Editing/color timing software (Avid, Final Cut Pro, DaVinci Resolve, and so on.)
  • Workstation computer
  • Storage
  • Control panel/surface
  • Video tape playback (optional)
  • Broadcast waveform monitor (optional)

FPGAs play a big role in providing much of the I/O and video processing horsepower in the form of dongles, boxes (standalone or rack-mounted), or cards to fit into the workstation or workstation expansion box. 

Video capture devices are used to ingest content for editing. Devices can ingest one or more digital formats (DVI, SDI, HDMI, DisplayPort) or analog formats (AV, s-video, composite). (see Video Capture Device page)

Video and image processing may be needed to transfer the content into a common format for editing. Functions here might include color space conversion, deinterlacing, frame buffering, gamma correction, scaling, and so on. (see Converter Boxes page)

Broadcast monitoring provides the ability to analyze your video using tools like waveform, vectorscope, RGB parade, YUV component parade, histogram, audio phase and audio level meters. This is necessary to ensure the video meets the broadcast standards for a particular region and is vital during editing, color correction and the mastering steps.

Video playback is also needed to output the video to the display monitor or the broadcast waveform monitor. Here, I/O functionality for SDI, HDMI and DisplayPort/Thunderbolt are needed.

Editing workstations typically work with proxies of the high-resolution content and/or compressed content. There are many intermediate proprietary codecs that are designed for the editing process and not for final distribution. Examples include ProRes, DNxHD, CineForm, AVCHD, XDCAM, AVC-Intra and others. These intermediate codecs retain high quality but use less disk space than an uncompressed file.

Videos can also be “wrapped” in a variety of container formats (including metadata that tells what codec was used and how the pieces are stored). Examples include AVI, MP4, MOV, WMV, ASF, and so on. FPGAs are used to accelerate the encoding or decoding of files with these intermediate editing codecs and container formats.

Cards, rack-mount or standalone boxes, or USB-based dongles can combine some or even all of these functions. But the FPGA is at the heart of all this functionality. 

For more information, click in one of our products' website, visit our Documentation web page or contact a representative. 

Broadcast Solution Reference Links

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