Although power is always a consideration when designing a facility or an OB vehicle, it takes a back seat to the sexy widgets and sophisticated solutions that nonetheless depend on it to perform properly and consistently.

“It’s one of those things that’s always in the back of your mind, but you’re never going to design a project around a power solution. If you’re building a facility and/or need remote production capability, Video Ghost really solves the problem.” said Chuck Walior, Aldis Systems VP & Chief Engineer.

VG01Video Ghost provides SDI video and power over coax.

Power is expensive to wire, especially if it needs to extend beyond the main plant. In Walior’s opinion, “It’s just a pain, it’s a hassle in a studio, and wherever you move a device you have to move its power with it.” Video Ghost provides a unique and cost-effective solution for remote power.

How Video Ghost works

Video Ghost, designed and manufactured by BHV Broadcast, is the video equivalent of phantom power for audio. It runs serial digital video (SD/HD/3G) and DC power in one standard coaxial cable, eliminating the need for batteries or local AC power sources. The digital video can run in either direction, so Video Ghost works equally well with cameras or monitors.

Video Ghost can supply 65W of dc power at distances of 500ft (150m) or more. The ‘fit-and-forget’ system provides an innovative and unique way to get power to a monitor or a POV (point-of-view) camera on a stage floor or on an arena roof, and eliminates the need for local mains power. The diagram below shows how Video Ghost can handle power and video for a camera or a monitor.

VG02Video Ghost also offers optional HDMI monitoring of SD/HD/3G video feeds.

Video Ghost's functionality is also available as GhostRack, a rack-mount version that packs four channels of power over coax into a 1RU x 19" rack case with front panel monitoring and control.

GhostRack is an ideal solution for mobile installations such as OB vehicles or fixed installations such as amphitheatres, sports arenas, houses of worship and other public gathering places, allowing the operator to run power and video over standard coaxial cable for multi-camera and/or monitor channels. In many of the fixed installations, coaxial cable is already embedded in the infrastructure, so with Video Ghost and GhostRack, there’s no need for expensive power installation.

Versatile solution

Video Ghost is ideal for short-term or permanent applications in a wide range of locations. Operational benefits include portability and rapid deployment (important features for mobile productions and difficult locations where monitoring is required) and the flexibility to send or receive video signals and DC power wherever and whenever the need arises.

Video Ghost will operate with any manufacturer’s standard power supply. Although Video Ghost is shipped with its own 19V supply, Walior decided to experiment and substitute the supply from the original OEM device and inject it in the Video Ghost. He found himself working with the exact amperage and the exact voltage that the manufacturer specified and was able to run power from the core plant all the way up to a remote location. He explains: “I used it with some Grass Valley compact cameras. I took their bricks and injected those into Video Ghost and it worked perfectly. It is completely compliant with any manufacturer’s specs, so I’m delivering exactly what they want delivered.”VG03

Video Ghost can fit and fix a multitude of problems. Put it on a shelf or in a rack, and its power receiver is compact enough to mount on a camera or monitor. “It’s going to come more and more into play because we understand that it not only can solve one problem real easily, it can really fix a dozen. It is a unique little fix. Simple and reasonably priced," said Walior.

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