HDBaseT vs. AV-over-IP: Let’s Call Off the Battle Royale

Daniel Shwartzberg of HDBaseT Alliance talks about the apparent “battle royale” being waged between HDBaseT and forms of AV-over-IP, calling it unnecessary because they can co-exist.

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Daniel Shwartzberg of HDBaseT Alliance talks about HDBaseT and AV-over-IP.

Often, especially recently, HDBaseT is pitted against AV-over-IP. For a lot of reasons, that perceived HDBaseT vs. AV-over-IP competition doesn’t make sense, says Daniel Shwartzberg, director of customer experience, HDBaseT Alliance.

“HDBaseT is the de facto standard in AV connectivity right now in terms of convergence and distance replacing all of the cables that an installer has in his work, in his installation and replace them with a simple category cable that can go very, very much farther than any of those individual cables actually could,” says Shwartzberg in an interview with Commercial Integrator.

He points out that HDBaseT Alliance boasts more than 200 members and an ecosystem fed by thousands of certified HDBaseT products. “It’s been a huge success,” he says.

So What’s the HDBaseT vs. AV-over-IP Controversy?

“In the last maybe 18 months there has been a lot of hype, a lot of discussion, a lot of activity around the field of AV over IP,” Shwartzberg says. “In other words, whereas HDBaseT is its own protocol, AV over IP, of course, uses standard Ethernet and standard IP protocols in order to transmit audio or video in installations.”

“You don’t have to just do HDBaseT. You don’t just have to do AV over IP. It’s important to try and understand the use cases where each,” Shwartzberg says.

Somehow “a lot of misunderstanding in the market” emerged in the AV marketplace, he says. “There seems to be this battle royale going on between HDBaseT in one corner and various AV over IP solutions in the other corner.”

The thing is, Shwartzberg adds, it’s not an apples-to-apples comparison. “HDBaseT is not AV over IP. The confusion gets even greater when you bear in mind that even AV over IP itself is broken down into a number of different camps. You’ve got 10G. You’ve got 1G. You have different 1G solutions from different vendors that themselves don’t know how to interoperate together. There’s a lot of confusion.”

At HDBaseT Alliance, AV-over-IP and HDBaseT isn’t an “either/or game,” he says.

“You don’t have to just do HDBaseT. You don’t just have to do AV over IP. It’s important to try and understand the use cases where each and every one of those solutions is applicable.”

Watch the video for much more from Shwartzberg on the HDBaseT vs. AV-over-IP battle royale.

About the Author


Tom has been covering electronics integration since 2003. Prior to being named editorial director of CI, he was senior writer and managing editor of CE Pro. Before that, he wrote for the sports department of the Boston Herald. Migrating to magazines, he was a staff editor for a golf publication and an outdoor sports publication.

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  • Thanks for this post. However I totally missed an important issue. The battle royale is at least IMHO not between HDBaseT vs AV over IP but rather
    A) AV as an island
    B) AV fully integrated into to customer’s generic IT infrastructure

    As long as AV is in island it does not really matter for the rest of the planet what kind of technology the AV guys use. However, as soon as one thinks of really making use of the existing infrastructure, then the rubber hits the road.

    Also I find it highly interesting that interoperability between various AV over IP standards dont seem to matter that much. Nobody seems to care, that solutions from manufacturer A are not compatible at all to manufacturer B. How come?

  • Conor McGill says:

    With all due respect, a representative of industry group for HDbaseT isn’t exactly an effective arbiter of this debate….especially considering it is the HDbaseT technology that is facing obsolescence.

  • Garth Leach says:

    **Full-disclosure. I work for a company that is a founding member of the SDVoE Alliance so this is totally biased**

    BUT…this is like an argument for coal vs clean energy. Sure they both provide energy but one of them is clearly future thinking.

    The ProAV integrator needs to become IP savvy now. Look at how video conferencing transformed to IP and how telecommunications transformed to VoIP. Anyone he waited too long got left behind. AV is no different.

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