VideoCentric | The Video Integration Experts

Cisco TelePresence 4200 MCU


The Codian MCU 4200 is a high performance Multipoint Control Unit, designed to take advantage of the higher bandwidth and higher quality video available on IP networks. It comes with Dual Gigabit Ethernet interfaces, allowing an unprecedented maximum of 100 users in the same conference, each using high quality video at more than 2 Mbits/s.

The product is packed with power – utilizing the latest video technology to process an unprecedented number of simultaneous high bandwidth video streams.


There are three versions of the product which vary only in the number of simultaneous participants.

Product Video Participants
(Up to 4Mbps each)
Additional Audio Participants
MCU 4203 6 6
MCU 4205 12 12
MCU 4210 20 20
MCU 4215 30 30
MCU 4220 40 40

Capacity independent of bandwidth

Each H.323 video participant can be connected at CIF resolution at 30 frames per second using H.263 at bandwidths up to 4Mbit/s and H.264 at up to 2Mb/s viewing any of the 64 continuous presence layouts. The Codian MCU allows each participant to have a different view into the conference which means each participant can select a different layout or different person to view. Each participant can connect using any voice or video codec and at any rate, and the MCU will transcode to give the best possible picture.

The Codian MCU 4200 can support any number of conferences and is only limited by the the number of video participants.

Streaming a conference, either using multicast or unicast, is equivalent to a single H.323 video participant. Using multicast, unlimited numbers of people can view a conference. Unicast streaming is limited to the total number of participants shown above.

A participant connecting using 4CIF or H.264 gets all the same features. Conferences can combine 4CIF and H.264 with participants connecting using lower resolutions and other codecs.

The Codian MCU 4200 supports additional audio-only participants without reducing the number of video participants.

Software Options

  • Video Firewall Option – allows MCU connection to additional networks (e.g. Internet)
  • High Resolution Option – for resolutions above CIF and up to 720p HD. Not required for H.239
  • Web Conferencing Option – provides content streaming, annotation and chat capabilities

Provisioning summary

Using high bandwidth, 4CIF / 4SIF, H.264 or Advanced (symmetric) Continuous Presence does not reduce the number of sites supported. There can be any number of conferences up to the limit on the number of participants.

Joining Conferences

Every conference has its own unique conference number, selected by the person setting up the conference. A conference pin can also be set to protect the access to the conference.

The Codian MCU can be called using IP addresses, or, if the Codian MCU is registered with a Gatekeeper or IP PBX, by using phone numbers. Note that apart from direct dialing into conferences Gatekeepers are optional.

On-screen menus: this is the simplest way to join a conference. Once you dial into the Codian MCU you can use the arrow keys on the remote to find and join the conference. The user interface is just like Tivo, and can be customized to show any bitmap in the background.

Audio DTMF: audio tones can be used by audio-only participants or video participants to select and join a conference. Once connected to the Codian MCU enter the conference number followed by #. If there is a conference pin then enter this followed by #.

Direct Dial: to call directly into a conference without going through the menu system, the Codian MCU needs to be registered with a Gatekeeper, IP PBX or Gateway which has allocated a range of phone numbers for the conferences. Each phone number in the range will then call into a different conference.

Audio direct dial example:


In this example we have allocated DID numbers in the gateway to be routed to the MCU.

The range for the MCU is 408 123 6000 to 408 123 6999. As there is no Gatekeeper this is configured in the Gateway.

We now create a conference with the conference number 6789. To access this conference from the Telephone Network dial 408 123 6789. The MCU will prompt for a conference pin if it has been set-up.

As well as calling directly into a conference the main conference number, 408 287 6000, can be called. The MCU will prompt for the conference id; enter “6789” followed by #. The MCU will prompt for a conference pin followed by # if it has been set-up, eg enter “1234#”.

Setting Up Conferences

Conferences on the Codian MCU can be scheduled easily using the simple web interface. Since the Codian MCU will automatically cope with all codecs and bandwidths there is no need to specify this at the time of scheduling the conference. There are some sample screen shots from the configuration pages here. Conferences can also be created by dialing directly into the Codian MCU and creating a new conference through the Auto Attendant.

Web Invitation: at any point during a conference it’s possible to go to the web to select one or a group of users and invite them into the conference. The MCU will then place calls to each of them. Using the web interface is straightforward, see the sample screen shots.

Pre-Arranged: scheduled conferences can have some number of H.323 video endpoints defined in advance; for example, the main conference rooms which are involved in the meeting. At the time of the meeting the Codian MCU will call out to the meeting rooms, if the call is not answered it will retry several times.

Layout Families

Once a user has joined a conference there is nothing else they need to do. They will be given a default layout with 1 large pane and some smaller panes. The large pane will show the currently active speaker and the small panes will show the other speakers. As more people join the conference this screen will automatically change to allow for the new participants. We call this a layout family. For most conferences this will be all that’s needed.

However, if desirable, it is possible to use your remote control or the web page to select a different layout family. With the remote control set to Far End the Up and Down arrow will rotate through the different layout families. There are five default families and 2 custom families, a custom family per user and one per conference. Here are some example layouts.

Cisco TelePresence 4200 MCU-TABLE

Who do you want to watch ?

As well as selecting the layout the remote control can also be used to select who you are watching. By default the display will be voice-activated with the large panes changing as people speak. By using the Left and Right arrows, each participant can be selected in turn overriding the the voice-activated selection.

If your end point does not have support for Far End Camera Control (like Net Meeting) don’t worry; this can all be set up just as easily from the web. If you plan to use a custom layout you will need to go to the web to select it.

Changing what you see will not disrupt other people as they have their own view of the conference.

What about users who don’t want to learn this ?

As well as using the remote its possible to do this from the web interface. The conference administrator can go into a conference set up a conference wide custom layout and switch everyone to it. Users who want to, can select a new layout, the rest can sit back and enjoy the benefit of the custom layout.

What about noisy users ?

Sometimes users make noise and the focus momentarily leaves the presenter. This can be avoided by assigning the “floor” to the presenter. This will force the presenter to be considered the active speaker even if someone else is talking.

Web page control of layout

Using the web interface it is possible to do everything that can be done with remote control and much more, including setting up custom layouts, selecting layout families and selecting the speaker. Screen shot examples are here.

Controlling Remote Cameras

One of the features that is often lost when using an MCU is the ability to control the camera at some of the remote locations.

With the Codian MCU this can be done by using either the web or the remote control. Press the Zoom In key, and the display will show an icon in the top left corner of the screen indicating that Up, Down, Left, Right and Zoom camera commands are being sent to the remote end.

It is also possible to control a remote camera using the web page; this is useful for users of endpoints such as Net Meeting which do not allow Far End Camera Control (FECC).


On-Screen Text Messaging

The Codian MCU will display useful text messages on the screen of users participating with video. The main messages are:

User Names: This gives the name (or number) of the participant being shown in that pane. It only appears when the pane changes and then disappears after a few seconds.


Warnings: For situations such as being the only participant, or if the conference is about to end.

Text Messages: can be sent to individual screens; this is useful if you want to give a participant information without interrupting the conference, for example, warning them that they will be next to present. Text messages can also be sent to the whole conference. Text messages are sent from the web page. Here is an example of a text message.



Conference PIN.

Every conference can be protected by a conference pin. Only users who know the pin can join, view, or even see who is participating in the conference.

Firewall Traversal

The MCU 4200 has two Ethernet ports. This allows you to put one inside the firewall and one outside. The external connection can only be used for conferences that are marked as public; it cannot be used for administrative access. This is an easy way to allow conferencing with customers and vendors without making risky changes to your firewall.


Hardware Encryption

The Codian MCU 4200 has a built-in encryption to allow triple DES and AES encryption in hardware. This will be enabled in a software upgrade after product release.

High Quality Audio

If you have invested in an endpoint which can do higher quality Wide Band audio the last thing you want to do is loose all that great quality when you hit a conference bridge. The Codian MCU 4200 mixes all audio at wide band quality and will transcode to allow different audio compression standards within a conference. This means that video endpoints or IP Phones can enjoy high quality audio while participants using traditional phones will receive standard quality audio.


Figure showing how all audio streams are brought up to the highest common quality before being mixed.

Video Association

With the availability of inexpensive USB based cameras for computers, more people are able to do video on their PC. With powerful computers Net Meeting can join video conferences at CIF resolution with up to 400kb/s.

Use of the PC can create audio problems. Either there is a problem of privacy when no handset is available. or there is a quality problem caused by limitations of PC sound cards. This makes the PC, which is great for video, not ideal for audio.

The Codian MCU 4200 solves this problem; the Codian MCU can associate your PC (using either DNS name, IP address, or E.164 address) with your normal desk telephone number. When you call into the MCU using your phone the MCU will automatically call out to your PC with a video only call. This way you can talk using your phone and watch on the PC screen.

This is easy to set up on an IP based phone system and requires a Voice Over IP gateway for a traditional PBX.

Still Upload

Users who don’t have any video endpoint, but still want their presence to be felt in the meeting, can upload a still image of themselves. Whenever they are talking this image will be brought to the foreground and treated like any other video stream. The upload can be done easily from the users page.

Streaming Support

For those company meetings when a lot of people want to watch, the Codian MCU 4200 will stream it out to Microsoft Media Player, QuickTime™ or Real Player – at a variety of speeds so that many more users can see and hear the action. Users are provided with a simple link to click on to view the conference, using either multicast or unicast. For security it is possible to have a secret PIN associated with the link.


Presenter Mode

Presenter mode allows a PC to join into the meeting so that slides can be shown. The slides can be selected for viewing using the remote control. This may be in full screen mode or they with the slides appear in a pane alongside the other participants in any one of the other layouts. The remote control can also be used to zoom in on a part of the screen.


  • Constant High Capacity
    Universal Port technology supports any codec, any speed, any resolution and any layout (including over 50 continuous presence layouts) on any port without loss of
    capacity or capability – greatly simplifying the planning, provisioning and scheduling of your conference.
  • Best Quality for Each Participant
    Delivers a unique video stream for each participant, resulting in the best possible audio and video quality for the available bandwidth and endpoint capabilities.
  • Investment Protection
    Endpoint agnostic and makes use of the latest capability of each manufacturer’s endpoints to deliver the best conferencing experience for each participant.
  • Standards-based and Compatible
    Offers full interoperability with IP and ISDN networks (using the Codian ISDN Gateway), and proven compatibility with all major vendors.
  • Streaming Video and Content
    The only MCU that allows you to stream video, audio and content to any web browser without any additional hardware or software.
  • Intuitive User Management
    Schedule, manage and monitor individual conferences and independently select the continuous presence layout for each user, without the need to install any additional
  • Packet Safe™ Technology
    Works in conjunction with the unique MCU architecture to ensure that packet loss anywhere on the network will have minimal impact on the quality of your conference
    and you stay connected.

Enhanced Features

  • Web Conferencing Option
    Add data, such as slides, chat and annotations to standard video and voice streaming, giving each participant an interactive experience regardless of how they connect.
  • Video Firewall Option
    The second Ethernet port allows callers from both inside and outside the network to meet on the bridge, leaving your firewall untouched and your security levels unchanged.
  • High Resolution Option
    Supports enhanced resolutions from 4CIF up to 720p HD, allowing multiple sites to be viewed simultaneously with no loss of clarity – you can clearly see all participants and content at the same time.



Codian MCU 4200

High Definition Performance
720p up to 15 fps H.263 continuous presence; 480p up to 30 fps Comprehensive HD audio

Video Standards
H.261, H.263, H.263+, H.263++, H.264

Video Resolution
From QCIF to 480p at up to 30 fps and 720p (1280 x 720) at up to 15 fps, including interlaced iCIF and iSIF 4:3 and 16:9 aspect ratios

Frame Rates
Up to 30 frames or 60 fields per second

Audio Standards
G.711, G.722, G.723.1, G.728, G.729, MPEG-4 AAC-LC, MPEG-4 AAC-LD, Polycom® Siren14™ / G.722.1 Annex C

H .323, SIP, H.235 (AES), SRTP, TLS, H.239 (dual video), VNCâ„¢, BFCP, H.243 (chair control), FTP, RTP, RTSP, HTTP, HTTPS, DHCP, SNMP, NTP, NTLM (authentication)

H.263 up to 4 Mbps, H.264 up to 2 Mbps for each site in all conference modes including advanced (symmetric) continuous presence

Universal Transcoding and Transrating
Automatic audio/video transcoding and transrating on all calls
A ny bandwidth, any resolution, any video or audio codec can be used on any video call within the same conference
Each participant has their own personal encode

Streaming Video
Built-in streaming server
View using Windows Media Playerâ„¢, RealPlayerâ„¢ or QuickTimeâ„¢
Streaming of slides (H.239 and VNCâ„¢)
Text chat
Unicast and multicast UDP, TCP or HTTP
Independent choice of bandwidth and codec

Localization and Customization
Custom IVR/auto attendant audio prompts and graphics
Uploadable multi language support

Built-in Web Server
Complete configuration, control and monitoring of the system and conferences

Built-in Gatekeeper
Resolution of E.164 numbers
Registration of conferences, endpoints and gateways
Up to 25 devices can register

MCU Features
H.323 dial in, or dial out from Web server
Standalone or using gatekeeper
Configurable audio and video auto attendant
Advanced continuous presence as standard on all ports
Automatic selection of best layout
Individual layout selection using remote control or Web pages Over 50 custom layouts
Widescreen (16:9) support
Active speaker selection using remote control or voice activated
Floor assignment through Web page or management application
Far end camera control tunneling using remote control or Web
Text identification of sites
On-screen text messaging to individual or all sites
Built-in conference scheduling and reservation
On-demand and ad hoc conferences
Dual video using H.239
Presentation mode: add slides from PC using VNCâ„¢
Preview of conference and individual camera on Web pages
Web Conferencing Option — those without endpoints can still interact
Uploadable bitmaps for audio participants
Video association for IP and traditional PBXs
Automatic connection to audio conferences
Multiway™ — enables TANDBERG video endpoints to initiate ad hoc multiparty calls
TANDBERG Codian ConferenceMe™
Content Sharing
Multiple layouts
Firewall friendly
Independent transcode per participant
Up to 12 simultaneous connections
Client computer requirements:
Refer to the list of verified PCs and Webcams under the support section of the TANDBERG website

System Management
XML management API
Management via embedded web server
RS-232 for local control and diagnostics
Syslog for diagnostics
Configurable event logs and full H.323 and SIP decoding
Configuration backup to network
Secure upgrades through Ethernet or CompactFlash
Call Detail Records

Quality of Service
Configurable DSCP or TOS/IP precedence

Network Resilience
Codian Packet Safe™ technology provides intelligent downspeeding, packet pacing and packet loss concealment to ensure optimum video and audio quality
Dynamic jitter buffering
Alternate gatekeepers

Audio Features
Wideband audio mixing
Built-in and uploadable auto attendant voice prompts
Automatic gain control, adjustable gain, power indication, individual audio mute using Web pages

Security Features
Seven levels of access rights and privileges for users
Strong password policy
Pin-protected conferences
Conference locking
Secure non-PC hardware and operating system
AES encryption, 128 bit key, H.235
SIP encryption
TLS certificate verification
VFO — second Ethernet port
Audit log

RJ45 Ethernet, 10/100/1000 Mbps full/half duplex, manual or auto sensing
RJ45 serial port
CompactFlash socket
39 status LEDs

Environmental Data
Operating temperature 0°C to 35°C ambient
Relative humidity below 90%

Physical Dimensions
Height 3.43”, 87 mm (2U), Width 17.4”, 442 mm
Depth 19.25”, 489 mm, Weight 22 lbs, 10 kg
19” rack mountable (kit supplied) or standalone
Power 100-240 VAC, 50/60Hz
600W maximum power consumption

Approvals & Compliance
European safety: EN 60950-1:2001
USA safety: UL 60950-1 First Edition
Canada safety: CSA 60950-1-03
CB Scheme certificate, CE Marked
E MC: EN55022 class A, EN61000-3-2, EN61000-3-3,
EN55024: EN61000-4-2,-3,-4,-5,-6,-11,
FCC Part 15 class A, VCCI class A, AS/NZS 3548 (C-Tick),
CCC Approved: GB4943-2001, GB9254-1998, YD/T993-1998
NAL Certificate (China)
RoHS compliant
Call Now