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Originally featured on BroadcastEngineering.com
Aug 2

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8/2/2011 11:17 AM  RssIcon

tandem-3g.jpgCrystal Vision’s TANDEM 3G is a single board solution providing a combined embedder and de-embedder for four groups of digital audio – with the ability to embed and de-embed up to eight AES at the same time and in any combination. Working with 3Gb/s, HD and SD sources and including integrated fiber input or output connectivity while still only using a single slot in a frame, makes TANDEM 3G a powerful, economic and space-saving solution for a very wide range of applications.

TANDEM 3G offers complete freedom when embedding and de-embedding external audio, and can be used with synchronous 48kHz AES, asynchronous 48kHz AES and synchronous Dolby E. There are eight bi-directional digital audio connections on the board which can each be independently configured as either an AES input or AES output, allowing the embedding or de-embedding of up to eight AES stereo pairs at the same time. Typically used for embedding or de-embedding all eight AES channels, or for embedding four AES while de-embedding four AES, such is the flexibility of TANDEM 3G it can be used for any other combination required.

When routing the audio TANDEM 3G offers full shuffling and overwriting of the mono channels between all four groups thanks to the powerful two 32 x 16 audio routers.

Explained Crystal Vision’s Managing Director Philip Scofield: “We’ve always been well-known for the flexibility of our embedding and de-embedding products and TANDEM 3G continues this tradition, providing twice as much audio as we’ve featured on an audio connector before. In fact, TANDEM 3G’s audio flexibility has resulted in large volumes being included in some of major broadcast projects of 2011.”

TANDEM 3G makes it easy for an engineer to match all his signals. An adjustable audio delay of up to 80ms can be used to compensate for any small delay between the incoming video and audio signals caused by video processing. Useful for avoiding lip-sync errors, TANDEM 3G also provides a switchable one or two frames video delay for matching any delays created by converting to or from Dolby E. By offering two frames of delay, TANDEM 3G can even compensate for ‘both ways’ Dolby E conversion.

The audio and video can both be optimized. TANDEM 3G includes full audio processing of the linear AES: the audio levels can be individually increased or decreased between +18dB and -18dB to match the rest of the system, while stereo to mono conversion is available to help those broadcasting a multi-language service. TANDEM 3G additionally includes a video proc-amp for picture optimization, with adjustment of the video gain, black level and independent YUV gains by up to 200%.

With TANDEM 3G, the engineer can easily embed or de-embed signals from beyond the local equipment bay – ideal for when he needs to take signals from another part of the building and de-embed audio into the audio mixer, or embed audio from the audio mixer and then send the signals to another area. To give TANDEM 3G integrated fiber input/output connectivity the motherboard is simply fitted with either the FIP fiber input option (used to receive an optical input) or the FOP fiber output option (used to transmit an optical output). Having the fiber integral to the board reduces the need to use additional rack space for separate fiber optic transmitters and receivers, and also brings financial savings.

Shipping now, TANDEM 3G is a 4 x 10.5 inches module which is housed in Crystal Vision’s standard frames, in 4RU, 2RU, 1RU and desk top box sizes, and with up to 12 boards fitting in 2RU. Suitable for use with either 110 ohm or 75 ohm digital audio, it uses the RM47, RM49, RM60 and RM61 frame rear modules to access the inputs and outputs.

TANDEM 3G is very straightforward to operate, with control options including board edge switches, an active front panel on the frame, a remote control panel, GPIs, SNMP and the Statesman PC software. One GPI output is reserved for alarm indication and may be assigned any number of 37 video and audio alarms, allowing comprehensive signal monitoring.

TANDEM 3G is ideal for applications requiring both embedding and de-embedding at the same time, while for those that just need to embed or de-embed there is no price premium to buy one device that can be used as both an embedder or de-embedder as required. Its ability to work with four audio groups allows broadcasters to have surround sound without Dolby E, and also makes it ideal for multi-language applications and for sports programming featuring both commentary and ‘ground’ effects.

Based at Whittlesford near Cambridge in the UK, Crystal Vision provides digital keyers, picture storage modules and a full range of interface equipment including converters, synchronizers, distribution amplifiers and audio embedders to the professional broadcasting industry worldwide.

www.crystalvision.tv

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