Calrec IP Primer Part 7: Network Switches

Welcome to the seventh in an eight-part series of articles on AoIP!

Over the last 6 weeks, we have released an IP chapter every Wednesday as part of Calrec’s latest IP Primer. The IP Primer builds up your knowledge of IP and will enable you to create reliable AoIP networks to meet the needs of your desired workflow without defining or compromising operations.

This week we will look at Network Switches in more detail.

For AES67 and SMPTE 2110 purposes, IP networks need to use managed switches. This is to allow network designers to configure the switches to best meet the requirements of the network and to get the best performance from every device. There are numerous feature settings which can be manipulated, and this chapter of Calrec’s IP Primer looks at what these are and how they should be managed.

Pat Schneider, US Customer Support Engineer at Calrec

Pat Schneider

US Customer Support Engineer at Calrec

Calrec IP Primer Part 7: Network Switches

Networks are made up of switches which allow devices to talk to each other, and so they are fundamental to the stability and security of the network. To ensure this stability and security, and in order to adhere to the SMPTE 2110 standard, switches on a broadcast network need to be a very specific kind.

Broadcast networks use managed switches to provide network designers with the ability to configure a switch’s feature set to guarantee the best network performance. But what are these features?

In this chapter, we will review the essential features that switches must have to successfully operate in an AoIP environment. We talk about port counts, throughput, uplink speeds, connectivity, spanning tree, IGMP settings and why you should always turn off any energy-saving features.

We will also look at the merits of Layer 2 and Layer 3 networks and the pros and cons of each. Both can be used on a broadcast network, but the practical considerations are very different, and the right choice will depend on the design of your network and it’s potential for future growth.

Keep an eye out for other parts of this Primer over the coming weeks, and for more like this sign up to our Soundwaves Newsletter below.

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