Data Translation Introduces Broadway, First Practical MPEG Video Solution for the Desktop

Broadway Eliminates Price/Performance Barriers to High-Quality Digital Video on Desktop PCs and the Internet

MARLBORO, Mass., March 4, 1996 -- Data Translation, Inc. (NASDAQ: DATX) today introduced the Broadway video capture and compression system, the first practical and cost-effective way to enliven World Wide Web pages, business presentations, CD-ROM and other media with full-motion, VHS-quality video.

Broadway is a high-performance video capture/encoding system for Windows PCs that produces digital video and CD-quality stereo sound based on the MPEG-1 (Moving Picture Experts Group) standard. Priced at $995, Broadway's board and intuitive interface remove the price and performance barriers to producing high-quality video on the desktop. With Broadway, Web page designers now can include high-quality video clips on their Web sites to entertain, inform and capture attention. Broadway MPEG video outperforms proprietary video compression schemes and provides platform independence because it is an international standard. Broadway also is a powerful tool for including full-motion, high-quality video in business presentations. In addition, CD-ROM producers can use Broadway to produce MPEG titles in less time and at a fraction of the cost of other MPEG encoding systems.

"Broadway represents a price-performance breakthrough that is expected to open the market for MPEG video applications on the Web, on the desktop and eventually in the home," said Fred Molinari, president and CEO of Data Translation. "The explosive growth of the Web, the increasing availability of high-performance PCs, and a market hungry for a powerful full-motion video solution makes this the right time for Broadway. With more than 20 years of digital video experience, Data Translation is well-positioned to capture and extend its lead in this arena as we continue to bring innovative solutions to the market."

Before Broadway, users' only options for MPEG video were hardware-based systems that cost $5,000 or more or inexpensive software-based systems that require a lengthy time to compress video (30 to 60 times real time). Broadway produces full-motion, VHS-quality video in much less time and at a significantly lower cost than other systems. It is a complete MPEG video solution consisting of a half-size PCI (Peripheral Component Interconnect), add-in card and an intuitive application for video capture, editing and compression. Broadway is bundled with MediaStudio VE 2.5 by Ulead for more sophisticated video editing and is fully compatible with other popular digital video editing software packages such as Adobe Premiere. Broadway makes it easy and affordable to create MPEG video for playback on MPEG-enabled PCs. Today, many PC vendors as well as graphics and video card vendors support such systems. In addition, Microsoft Windows 95 and Windows NT will support MPEG via the Microsoft bundled MPEG player.

"The MPEG video market is poised for rapid growth in 1996 and Microsoft is committed to MPEG video support in Windows," said Steve Raney, Microsoft's Video Tool Evangelist. "We are pleased to see the emergence of an under-$1000, hardware-accelerated MPEG capture/encoder product via Data Translation's Broadway. We believe Broadway, combined with future Windows software MPEG playback, will enable more people than ever before to experience interactive computing with full visual realism."

A Robust MPEG Solution

Broadway is a robust implementation of the MPEG-1 standard for digital video compression or encoding. Compression is needed for digital video because a single second of uncompressed video would occupy more than 27 megabytes of disk storage space. The MPEG-1 standard includes three levels of encoding -- intraframe (I), bi-directional (B) and predictive (P) -- to achieve the best results. However, some MPEG encoders only implement a subset of these methods.

Broadway utilizes complete I, P, and B frame encoding to produce the best possible quality video in the smallest possible file size. This is especially important for Web page and CD applications where bandwidth is limited and short download times are a must and for presentations where disk size is limited. In addition, Broadway can capture video input in real time and encode a clip in just three times real time, compared to 30 times real time for other systems. Because Broadway is designed to be compatible with versions of MPEG still in development for digital television and videophone applications, it offers a long-term solution and investment protection.

Broadway Features

Broadway can accept S-Video or composite input from a camcorder or VCR and can deliver output via CD-ROM, over a local or wide area network, or to a local disk file. Broadway can also compress Video for Windows (AVI) files to MPEG and produce either an editable form of MPEG (AVI) or fully compressed MPEG-1 video files. Under NTSC, video output size is 352x240 pixels (SIF) or 176x120 (QSIF). Broadway's digital video capabilities are based on C-Cube's proven MPEG-encoding technology.

Broadway requires an MPC3 compatible system, which includes a Pentium processor and PCI expansion slot, minimum 8 MB RAM, SVGA video, an audio card with capture capability, and Windows 95 or Windows NT.

About Data Translation

Data Translation, Inc. (NASDAQ: DATX) is a world leader in the design, manufacture and marketing of high performance digital video, multimedia, digital signal processing and data acquisition hardware, software and systems. Founded in 1973 and headquartered in Marlboro, Mass., the company is at the forefront in the development of standards-based digital video editing and playback systems that offer significant price and performance advantages over competing products. Broadway product information is obtainable via the World Wide Web at

Broadway is a trademark of Data Translation Inc. All other products mentioned are trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective holders.