Video interface and IP workflow solutions provider Magewell is celebrating its tenth anniversary this month. Growing significantly from its roots as a custom hardware design firm for third-party software developers, the company has established itself as a global leader in video capture, conversion, and streaming solutions that help video production and AV professionals thrive in the dynamically evolving media technology landscape.
Magewell spent its first year in business primarily as an engineering company, developing robust hardware modules on an OEM basis for vendors of solutions such as lecture capture systems. However, with its own innovative technology ideas and industry vision, Magewell soon branched out by creating its own product lines for end users spanning the professional AV and media production markets. The company also established a worldwide network of expert distributors, resellers, and systems integrators that has been crucial to the company’s international success.
“We recognised the intrinsic role that streaming production would play in people’s lives for more than just entertainment,” said Nick Ma, CEO and CTO at Magewell (pictured). “We wanted to make it easy and accessible for more people – not just production professionals, but anyone using AV for communications – to create their own high-quality streams. Our goal was to provide tools that simplify the production process while making the industry’s technology transitions affordable and practical for users. We listen closely to our customers, while our channel partners provide valuable regional insight and expertise.”
Magewell’s first end-user products – the XI series of PCIe cards and first-generation USB Capture Box – laid the foundation for an extensive line of video capture solutions that now includes USB Capture Gen 2 and USB Capture Plus external capture devices; Pro Capture PCIe cards; and Eco Capture M.2 cards. The company expanded its portfolio into new product categories with the launch of the award-winning Ultra Stream series of live streaming appliances, followed by the Pro Convert family of NDI® encoders and decoders for bridging traditional video and audio signals with IP media networks. Magewell also introduced software utilities to enhance the customer experience of its hardware offerings.
Today, hundreds of thousands of Magewell devices are used by customers in over 50 countries around the world for applications including video conferencing, live streaming, multi-site video distribution, live event production, lecture recording, active learning, medical imaging, gaming, and more. Magewell’s solutions also took on increased significance during the pandemic, supporting the exponential growth of web-based video conferencing and live streaming in new remote and hybrid working and learning models. The plug-and-play USB Capture devices have helped users integrate external cameras and sources into their video conferencing sessions, while the company’s easy-to-use streaming solutions helped houses of worship, educators, government officials, corporations, and entertainers stay connected to followers, students, constituents, customers, and fans.
Having this type of positive impact on users is important to the Magewell team. “We’re proud of having been a pioneer in bringing new technologies to the marketplace over the past 10 years, not for the products themselves, but the way they have enabled and empowered our users to achieve their goals,” said Ma. “They’re the ones who create great content.”
Magewell started its tenth anniversary year with the launch of the new Ultra Encode family of universal live media encoders and has many more introductions planned for the coming months. Looking forward, Ma notes that shared benefits of the ongoing transition to IP are driving convergence between industries and vertical markets, but that important distinctions will remain.
“The move from HDMI and SDI signal architectures to IP-based media networks is blurring the lines between broadcast production and various pro AV applications from a technology perspective,” Ma explained. “However, the business needs and goals of these markets will continue to differ, so we will continue to design our products to meet their unique requirements. We are always excited to see what innovative use cases our customers come up with for our products, and we look forward to continuing to serve them for many years to come.”