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Originally featured on BroadcastEngineering.com
Feb 6

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2/6/2008 2:14 PM  RssIcon

It hasn‘t taken SYNNER HD long to start simplifying system designs. Shipping now, Crystal Vision‘s latest multi-functional HD product combines on one board the traditional functionality of five different products - video synchroniser, tracking audio delay, embedder, de-embedder and audio processor - making it suitable for any applications involving untimed HD or SD video and associated audio. Not only does this ability to be used in many different ways give enhanced flexibility to the system designer, it also brings significant cost and rack space savings.


With its most common use as a straightforward video synchroniser for embedded audio environments, SYNNER HD has an enviable list of synchronising features. Essentially a frame synchroniser allowing any timing difference, SYNNER HD additionally offers the advantages of a line synchroniser, with a short minimum delay of 2us and quick recovery of input timing. SYNNER HD can both synchronise incoming video signals which are not locked to the local reference and compensate for timing delays within the video system. Its ability to cross-lock means that an HD or SD input can be referenced to either HD tri-level syncs or SD Black and Burst - therefore allowing it to use any existing timing signals. The output timing relative to the reference can be adjusted through an entire frame using horizontal and vertical settings. SYNNER HD offers a powerful and unique synchronising system, synchronising at three separate points which allows it to avoid picture disturbances for switches on the input that are between mistimed sources and that occur in the vertical blanking. Manual freeze allows it to be used as a simple still store, while automatic freeze is available when input fails through loss of signal.


SYNNER HD includes an internal tracking audio delay which tracks the video delay, running the audio fast or slow to ensure the video and audio stay correctly timed and to avoid lip sync errors. Up to 20ms of fixed audio delay can be added on top of the tracking to compensate for early audio.


By fitting the standard Crystal Vision piggybacks to the motherboard SYNNER HD can also include an audio embedder or de-embedder for analogue or digital audio - allowing the embedding of one or two groups of audio into the video or the de-embedding of one or two groups of audio timed to the system. Crystal Vision is well known for the powerful audio routing which appears across its range, and SYNNER HD provides full channel shuffling via its 16 x 8 mono router which allows the audio tracks to be rearranged between the two groups and additionally audio replace where an input piggyback can be used to overwrite some of the original audio channels from the HD or SD feed.


SYNNER HD also offers powerful audio processing capabilities. The audio level can be increased or decreased to match the rest of the system, with each mono audio channel offering individual gain control, adjustable between +3dB and -3dB in 0.1dB steps. Audio channels can be muted, while stereo to mono conversion helps those broadcasting a multi-language service. Forward error correction ensures audio quality is maintained.

All these functions combine together to make SYNNER HD suitable for a very large number of different applications. Its first and foremost use is as a straightforward embedded audio synchroniser. By adding input piggybacks SYNNER HD can accept an untimed feed of video and embed up to two groups of external analogue or digital audio, producing timed video and embedded audio with optional overwriting of audio channels - ideal for audio and video lines in. With output piggybacks fitted SYNNER HD can take an untimed feed of video and embedded audio and produce video and separate analogue or digital audio timed to station syncs. By fitting one input piggyback and one output piggyback, SYNNER HD can be used as a combined video synchroniser and tracking audio delay for independent video and audio. In this case the audio can be fully processed and delayed to match the synchronised video.


Crystal Vision‘s Managing Director, Philip Scofield, sums up the product‘s usefulness: "With its huge range of audio and video processing, SYNNER HD turns ambitions and complicated broadcast station designs into elegant and tidy solutions."


SYNNER HD is a space-saving 100mm x 266mm module which fits in Crystal Vision‘s standard frames, allowing 24 boards in 4U, 12 in 2U, six in 1U or two in a desk top box. It can be used with two frame rear modules to access all the inputs and outputs, with the RM33 used for applications involving analogue audio or 110 ohm AES and the RM39 for 75 ohm AES. It comes with the full range of control options to suit all preferences - including board edge switches, an active front panel on the frame, a remote panel located in a different room or the Statesman PC software.


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

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