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Cisco SX Series 2014: What’s new


As Cisco unveil their newest additions to their video conferencing and telepresence portfolio, a plethora of sleek and refreshed video endpoints & codecs are released into the market, alongside a new Collaboration platform and a bundle of updated fancy features & accessories.

With the video industry excited by this announcement seen to be Cisco’s most significant announcement in the video field since the takeover of Tandberg in 2010, VideoCentric spent last Thursday visiting our friends at Bedfont Lakes (Cisco Executive Briefing Centre) to check out the new systems in action and see what all the fuss was really about. Our first blog takes a brief look at the two new SX products, the SX10 and the SX80.

First up, let’s take a look at the Cisco SX10. The SX10 is a smart, sleek and all-in-one compact system that has been designed to turn small meeting rooms into video enabled spaces. Something the industry has been waiting for Cisco to bring out of the bag, and something that is going to be perfect for the SMB market and those looking to make video conferencing more accessible across their organisation. 

cisco-sx10-screen

As shown above, this tiny SX codec can be “snapped” onto the top of a screen (we are told this can be any TV or monitor, so no need to rip out all the displays already in place, this just bolts on). Its has its 1080p camera and microphone combined into the overall unit, and is simply powered over ethernet.

So what are VideoCentric’s first impressions of the Cisco SX10?

The system looks great, and is a cheap option of low budget customers. Our sales team in the SMB Market are excited about this product, both by the price point vs. quality, and the ease of installation for customers. Many organisations are putting Google Chromebox into their meeting spaces but the Cisco SX10 is higher quality at the same price point – and where the Chromebox only allows other Chromeboxes to talk to it, the SX10 is standards-based.

We also see this as a competitor for entry level LifeSize’s, such as the LifeSize Express 220. At this price point, we will be able to offer the SX10 on pay-as-you-go, with a VideoCloud Virtual Meeting Room, in a nicely tailored VideoCloud bundle.  

Another in the SX Series: The Cisco SX80. The SX80 is the new “integrator codec” launched by Cisco that is heavy in features, highly flexible to suit a variety of industries & applications, and due to it’s compatibility & connectivity, has been designed to incorporate into large meeting rooms, boardrooms, lecture theatres and briefing centres. 

The SX80 also offers the first support in the industry for H.265, a high efficiency video coding standard that can be used to provide substantially improved video quality at the same bit rate as previously. And, although we’re still showing the world 1080p, this standard can support a whopping 8K Ultra High Definition. 

Cisco SX80

 

For a codec, the SX80 looks much smarter than other codecs we have seen in the past, however not that this matters too much if it’s being shoved in a rack for no one to see! Although it has a great deal of inputs, it is a step down from the Cisco C90 codec, something we supply into theatres and boardrooms regularly, and therefore I am not 100% where it will fit in my own selling portfolio. However, time will tell – I am certain the features such as H.265 and compatibility with the SpeakerTrack camera will make this a really smart & sort-after solution.

Although it might not live up to the C90 in terms of connectivity, it can actually boast it’s ins and outs being a slight improvement on the Cisco C60, another of Cisco’s great selling large meeting space codecs. With an extra HD output, alongside it’s enhanced multi-site capabilities and extreme quality features, Cisco might be adamant that they are not making the C-Series end-of-life anytime soon, but we will just watch this space…

With other new additions to the portfolio, including the MX700 and MX800, new MX200 and MX300 G2, and the SpeakerTrack 60 Camera, we have plenty to tell you about, and our sales & technical teams are ready to chat through the above and more, so give us a call today, or check back next week for our next blog. 

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