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Video switcher (video mixer)

A video switcher, or video mixer, is used to combine video signals from external video sources to provide an output signal representing a picture in which there is a transition between the image represented by one external signal and the image represented by the other external signal. Video production switchers have become the center of a live production system, not only for video but also for device control. Modern effects involve many devices that have to be driven in synchronism. Such modern effects may involve sound effects or playback of short animations synchronized with a switcher mix, wipe or digital effect fly-in. In a video special effects system, video mixer circuits are used to combine two video signals into a single signal in response to a control signal. A video mixer selectively combines pixels of a first video signal with pixels of a second video signal, responsive to a video mixer control signal, to produce pixels of a composite video signal. In broadcasting stations or production houses, etc., transmission and reception of digital video signals are carried out between a large number of video equipments through so called effect switchers which are digital video switchers for selecting a desired digital video signal from a plurality of digital video signal inputs to implement mix processing or wipe processing, etc. In the television world various video input sources provide picture images for input to a video switcher which then switches to the output for transmission or recording one of the picture images from a selected one of the input sources. Over the years, video switchers have utilized various types of technology. analog video switchers have used analog circuitry and a single processor running a proprietary closed architecture operating system. Digital switchers use one or more processors running a proprietary closed architecture operating system. A video switcher typically includes a switching unit, mix/effects (M/E) amplifiers, a control processor and a control panel. The control processor controls the switching unit and M/E amplifiers to provide the video output signal. The switching unit receives video input signals and provides the input signals to the M/E amplifiers. The M/E amplifiers combine selected input signals to produce a video output signal.

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