Understanding USB in Professional AV Environments White Paper Report (Extron)
POV: Thomas Pulley
Like all technology, Universal Serial Bus (USB) has evolved over time. Originally developed to minimize the number of peripheral ports on a PC, USB is now a comprehensive set of interface specifications for high speed wired communication between a wide range of devices, with or without a computer. USB is increasingly being used in AV systems for much more than basic keyboard and mouse connections. It is used for connecting storage devices, extending and distributing audio and video signals, and even for transmitting power. With increased bandwidth, a smaller connector format, and support from major device manufacturers, USB seems primed to act as the single connector for laptops and other portable systems in the future. AV professionals will benefit from understanding how USB works, including its advantages and limitations, in order to optimize its use in a pro AV environment.
In my time working with AV systems understanding USB has never been more important. Knowing what type of signals can be converted, and how to use those signals, to broaden the use of a conferencing space, a control room, or even a classroom is a huge advantage in today’s world. Understanding how and why a room system works will allow the user to feel more confident. USB is now capable of taking audio and video and converting them into a signal that can be used by a laptop, turning conference spaces into bring your own device spaces, while still being able to use all the peripherals in a room. The uses for USB will continue to grow in the future, understanding how it works will be of use to any person working in any professional environment. In the following White Paper, you will come to understand the abilities and limitations that USB can allow for. And in doing so will grow your understanding of its use in not only professional AV environments, but also in personal use as well.