Press releases

mai 29, 2024

SWR moves to software playout with integrated Pixel Power solution from Rohde & Schwarz

New playout center covers multiple ARD consortium services

Photo courtesy of SWR Baden-Baden

Rohde & Schwarz has implemented its Pixel Power graphics and playout solution at Südwestrundfunk (SWR), the regional German broadcaster based in Baden-Baden. SWR is part of the German federated ARD consortium and provides the primary playout facilities not only for its own channels but for other southern German broadcasters, including Saarländischer Rundfunk (SR), Hessischer Rundfunk (HR) and Bayerischer Rundfunk (BR).

As its existing playout infrastructure reached end-of-life, SWR determined to move to a modern, software-defined solution. Central to its strategy was that graphics and branding must be an integrated part of the new solution.

After intensive benchmarking, SWR selected Pixel Power, a Rohde & Schwarz company, as the preferred solution to meet its requirements. Pixel Power Gallium automation and StreamMaster signal processing are software-defined and can be configured to precisely meet the requirements of each user. Pixel Power’s long history as a company providing high quality graphics was also a critical deciding factor.

“In our search for a modern playout solution, we wanted a solution that is truly future-proof, flexible and highly scalable,” said Udo Fettig, Project Manager at SWR. “Gallium and StreamMaster is our chosen solution, providing all necessary information in one graphical user interface, without restrictions. We could lay the system out to suit all our operational workflows.”

Central to SWR’s operational requirements was not only the ability to manage live events and schedule interventions but have the agility to add live graphics when required, from lottery results to severe weather warnings. The new solution also supports text-to-speech functionality to provide access to emergency alerts for visually impaired viewers.

“Live content is absolutely central to linear channels,” said James Gilbert, CEO of Pixel Power and Director of Product Management for Rohde & Schwarz media solutions. “Thematic channels will ultimately be replaced by VoD: linear broadcasters must have the ability not just to integrate live events but to react to changing situations,” adds Gilbert.

Gallium and StreamMaster are software applications running on custom of the shelf (COTS) hardware which can be configured to create the workflows required. The solution can operate on premises, in the cloud or as a hybrid. It also inherently supports remote access, and SWR has already run its output with the channel controller from a home office location while retaining all the flexibility and interactivity around live interventions and unscheduled events.

“We are happy that the system is expandable and can scale up easily to meet our evolving requirements. Playout needs can arise very quickly, and the system lets us be even quicker,” says Andreas Mungenast, Head of Playout and Media Operations Center SWR.

For more information on Gallium and StreamMaster, and the complete Rohde & Schwarz broadcast and media product range, go to

Press & media contact

Andreas Heiland
Director Marketing Broadcast, Amplifier & Media Solutions

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Rohde & Schwarz

Rohde & Schwarz is striving for a safer and connected world with its Test & Measurement, Technology Systems and Networks & Cybersecurity Divisions. For 90 years, the global technology group has pushed technical boundaries with developments in cutting-edge technologies. The company's leading-edge products and solutions empower industrial, regulatory and government customers to attain technological and digital sovereignty. The privately owned, Munich based company can act independently, long-term and sustainably. Rohde & Schwarz generated a net revenue of EUR 2.78 billion in the 2022/2023 fiscal year (July to June). On June 30, 2023, Rohde & Schwarz had around 13,800 employees worldwide.

R&S® and CERTIUM® are a registered trademark of Rohde & Schwarz GmbH & Co. KG.

Rohde & Schwarz Broadcast & Media

For decades, Rohde & Schwarz has been a leading technology innovator in broadcast distribution and a trusted partner in media production. Broadcast solutions from Rohde & Schwarz deliver the latest generation of energy-efficient, software-defined transmitters and enable network operators to leverage new broadcast technologies. Providing solutions for live and studio production, post-production, multiviewing and playout, Rohde & Schwarz helps media professionals produce and deliver great content.

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