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Registered: ‎01-12-2018

TV Uplink Truck Idea

Hey everyone. New here. I am a local broadcaster that has been picking up a lot of clients and looking to become my own uplink.

 

Currently I use LTE to provide uplink for my broadasts. The data costs are getting crazy and also depending on location, I don't have great signal. Currently I do bonding with 3 different Cell Providers. I can continue with this, but I would love to be able to offer backhaul services as well in my city ontop of broadcast.

I came across airFiber and see alot of people are using them for backhaul and WISPs. 

 

My idea is to colocate on a tower here and create the receiver to my own truck.

 

The tower I'm looking at is over 600ft tall.

What would it take to get something like this going. Would I need 4 attenas on the tower pointing in different directions? 

 

Thoughts? Ideas? Man Happy And thanks for the help. This is pretty exciting stuff.

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Re: TV Uplink Truck Idea

There's a lot going on in LTE (and some very exensive basestation hardware) to make it do what it does.

 

If you have a TV remote truck with a proper pneumatic mast, and the 5 GHz spectrum is not very busy there, you might be able to cover a small area (think 5-8 mile radius depending on what size dish the mast will support).

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Re: TV Uplink Truck Idea

What bandwidth do you typically need for your uplinks?

Airfiber is point to point link technology. Think focused parabolic antennas. AirMax AC might be better suited to a 4 x 90 degree sector antenna type installation at the tower (and then an aimable dish antenna on your remote truck, pointing back to the tower).

It's going to come down to your link throughput needs, the typical distances, and choice of radios/antennas.
I did it my way .... Man Happy
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Re: TV Uplink Truck Idea

Thanks for the reply. So you are saying one airfiber5 on the tower can cover a radius of 8 miles? What if I'm lets say 10 miles down the road in a clear line does that make any difference? 

 

I guess my question is what would it take to get something going in all directions. And if you did mean that what would get it the farthest. I see the airfiber goes around 100km. Is that with ideal 5ghz conditions? (im also assuming 1 clear direction)

 

Don't mind me I am just trying to figure out the best use case as I am trying to stick it to the bigs guys in my area.

Is there a way to repeat signals between towers? 

 

 

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Re: TV Uplink Truck Idea

[ Edited ]

motorcityhost wrote:

So you are saying one airfiber5 on the tower can cover a radius of 8 miles? 


One airFiber 5X (or one airMAX 5AC radio, probably a better idea as @flipper suggested) on one sector antenna (covering perhaps 45°- 90° of arc) might be able to reach out 8 miles if you use a 2-3' dish on the remote truck, aim it very carefully, and keep it from moving once it's aimed.  It's not an ideal configuration, and the 5 GHz spectrum is generally pretty busy these days.

 


I guess my question is what would it take to get something going in all directions.
...
Is there a way to repeat signals between towers?


Now you're talking about building an entire network.  That's what many of us here do for a living.  It's not easy or inexpensive.

 

Do you have a WISP in your area?  It would make far more sense to partner with someone who's already built the network.

 


I see the airfiber goes around 100km. Is that with ideal 5ghz conditions? (im also assuming 1 clear direction) 

Two three foot dishes mounted on 120' or higher towers, pointed exactly at each other with nothing inbetween.  To get full modulation (speed) on that link, you'd need six or eight foot dishes.

 

There's a reason traditional TV remotes are aimed at mountains.

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Re: TV Uplink Truck Idea

[ Edited ]

@flipperThanks I didn't see the airMAX stuff. Interesting.

@MimCom

I don't mind building a small network. (as long as I can negotiate the right tower leasing) Money really isn't the issue here as I know this isn't cheap. But in the long run it could work better then paying Verizon, AT&T and Tmobile at the same time different data rates. Of course for "out of market" events I would rely on these. I'm just trying to figure out the best tools for the job that don't necessarily break the price point. I mean for example I could buy a tricaster for $40k or build my own video switcher that does the same stuff and more for $5k. Kinda how I found Ubiquiti.

So then lets throw airFiber out of window as that is more point to point clear view and not really omni-directional. It seems airMAX is what I'm needing.

So let's say I throw 4 x 90 degree sector antennas on my main tower.

Would I be able to repeat this on a couple towers within the "8" miles in all directions to broaden my reach?


And @flipper I would say that for normal broadcasts we typically use 5-30mbps (upload). Would I like to use more? Sure, but that is typically what we are at. But its needs to be stable at those upload speeds.

 

Sadly I'm in the metro detroit area. There are no mountains anywhere near Man Tongue

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Re: TV Uplink Truck Idea

[ Edited ]

Sorry, but you're asking for a satellite truck on the cheap!

 

AirFiber [AF-5X] radios use the unlicensed 5GHz band. In a

city environment, there is likely to be heavy interference in

some segments you might be working in. That is a serious

issue in any dense urban environment. Careful search for

a relatively clear band segment might help, but it is both

tedious and not assured to work in every case. Ubiquiti

has a product on a licensed band, but that is for fixed use

only; it could not be licensed for this.

 

Because this is point-to-point, you must always assure a clear

path between the 'tower' and your site. That alone may be

very difficult to find. It also requires large dish antennas for

distance, and their beamwidth is only a few degrees.These

dishes must be carefully aimed; sector antennas won't work here.

This would require manual or automatic antenna aiming.on

both ends. Ubiquiti has no product that would make this easier.

 

Forget the '100km' boast. That is only for very low-speed fixed

installations under absolutely ideal conditions.

 

I have worked with the TV remote backpacks; they're expensive,

heavy and some say they constitute excessive rf radiation to the

head. But they do use licensed [LTE] spectrum that the carriers

had to pay for; that assures bandwidth in most cases.   Dave


> HQ in Seacoast region New Hampshire U.S.A.
> Ubiquiti Certified Trainer [UCT] for:
     UBWA [AirMax] / UEWA [UniFi] / UBRSS [routers]
UBNT.NH@gmail.com
New Member
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Registered: ‎01-12-2018

Re: TV Uplink Truck Idea

[ Edited ]

Yes I’m trying to do a satellite truck without the satellite as that does not provide what I’m needing.

I mean I could just make the truck have very high gain LTE Antennas.

Was just curious if there was anything that I could throw up on the tower and then pick up from a truck antenna.

I appreciate all the feedback.

 

 I actually do use a backpack for streaming now. 

 

 So I guess I’m just looking to figure out how to integrate LTE into my truck then with high gain antennas. 

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Re: TV Uplink Truck Idea

[ Edited ]

Sure: with a pneumatic mast and LTE antennas on the

top--perhaps even with a booster amp/preamp up there.

 

Of course, broadcasters often use this kind of setup with a

rotatable mount with antennas for an STL. There's a reserved

set of licensed channels for that in the 900MHz band. But that

is not at all cheap, and you need a tower on the other end.

 

It might be useful to employ Ubiquiti WiFi equipment around

your truck to link to the camera chain. But remember: these

are all unlicensed channels--subject to random interference.   Dave


> HQ in Seacoast region New Hampshire U.S.A.
> Ubiquiti Certified Trainer [UCT] for:
     UBWA [AirMax] / UEWA [UniFi] / UBRSS [routers]
UBNT.NH@gmail.com
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Re: TV Uplink Truck Idea


motorcityhost wrote:

I'm in the metro detroit area. There are no mountains anywhere near Man Tongue


You're not going to find enough free 5 GHz spectrum there to do the job.  When the spectrum gets busy, you need higher gain antennas and shorter distances (more towers or buildings) in order to link up.

 

Part 27 (EBS/BRS 2.5 GHz) might be a better fit for this, but it looks like those licenses (at least the EBS channels) are owned by Detroit Public Schools and the Archdiocese of Detroit, and leased to Community Telecommunications Network.  The BRS licenses belong to Clearwire (Sprint).

 

FWIW, I spent the first seven years of my career as a TV broadcast engineer.

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Re: TV Uplink Truck Idea

If you can keep it within a couple of miles from the tower, it's a feasible idea. If you can limit it to single digit megabit rates, it's a feasible idea at 8 miles or so.

8 miles and 30Mbps on an unlicensed band...would be a stretch, for 360 degree coverage. Feasible for a point to point parabolic antenna link.

If you've got multiple tower locations, you have a much better shot of making this work. You're talking quite a bit of infrastructure, though.

Take a look at the Prismstation 5AC and the 90 degree horn antenna attachment. Pay attention to the beam pattern, and where you might be able to mount these things on a tower, for the footprint/coverage. Probably plan on a 620mm dish for your remote truck; there will be some aiming involved, which takes time.

If you've got multiple towers around town, and a fairly big wallet, you can put this together (given that Detroit isn't 5GHz saturated).

If you've got multiple towers/high spots, consider fiber backhauls from those places that make sense (can get it cheaply enough).
I did it my way .... Man Happy
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Re: TV Uplink Truck Idea

Detroit is 5GHz saturated. I see no hope here.   Dave


> HQ in Seacoast region New Hampshire U.S.A.
> Ubiquiti Certified Trainer [UCT] for:
     UBWA [AirMax] / UEWA [UniFi] / UBRSS [routers]
UBNT.NH@gmail.com
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Re: TV Uplink Truck Idea

Dave says no. Stop here.

The radios aren't all that expensive. Go ahead and buy some hardware and see what you get. Ebay is always an escape route if you come up short.

Good luck.
I did it my way .... Man Happy
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Re: TV Uplink Truck Idea

[ Edited ]

So what do the local news use? They aren’t using satellite that’s for sure. CBS is on this same tower for the local news. Any ideas? I figured it was something like this but With licensed airwaves. 

 

So it seems unless I pay for some licensed space I should go all in on LTE. 

 

Just wish data wasn’t so expensive on these carriers. 

 

Thanks so much for the insight.

 

I’ll still keep airfiber in my mind for when we buy the building next door and I’m to lazy to run fiber to it lol

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Re: TV Uplink Truck Idea

[ Edited ]

In my area--the local ABC affiliate--which I've done

remote work for--uses that LTE backpack at $30K+.

They also use permanently-installed fiber in several

popular locations to cover the NH primaries--where

they make enough ad revenue to fulfill dreams.

 

They also have an STL link, and I've used high-speed

coax Internet circuits for uplinks in several cases.

 

Oh-right-and do buy lots of Ubiquiti gear; maybe 'flipper'

gets a commission!   Dave


> HQ in Seacoast region New Hampshire U.S.A.
> Ubiquiti Certified Trainer [UCT] for:
     UBWA [AirMax] / UEWA [UniFi] / UBRSS [routers]
UBNT.NH@gmail.com
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Re: TV Uplink Truck Idea

[ Edited ]

motorcityhost wrote:

So what do the local news use? They aren’t using satellite that’s for sure. CBS is on this same tower for the local news. Any ideas? I figured it was something like this but With licensed airwaves.


Broadcast Auxiliary Service (Part 74).  Most commonly 2 GHz until about a decade ago, but that got sold off to the cell carriers.  Many have 7 GHz and/or 12-13 GHz licenses covering entire counties (thus preventing the rest of us from licensing PtP links under Part 101).

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Re: TV Uplink Truck Idea


MimCom wrote:

motorcityhost wrote:

So what do the local news use? They aren’t using satellite that’s for sure. CBS is on this same tower for the local news. Any ideas? I figured it was something like this but With licensed airwaves.


Broadcast Auxiliary Service (Part 74).  Most commonly 2 GHz until about a decade ago, but that got sold off to the cell carriers.  Many have 7 GHz and/or 12-13 GHz licenses covering entire counties (thus preventing the rest of us from licensing PtP links under Part 101).


Exactly - here in Denver the local stations have Pt 74 relays on the 36 story building we have our main PoP in ( I also used to build TV stations as a Consultant back in the '80s and early '90s...) but they also do a bit of 21GHz STL and even some 5GHz PtP stuff as backup.   Unfortunately there's not much you can do in urban areas on the cheap that works very well, especially if you are doing  remotes in HD.

 

I know what you want to do, and as previously said the equipment is inexpensive enough you should probably get some to try out to see what you can do with it in your specific case, but there's a reason why Moseley et al are still selling ENG radio systems...

Jim

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