Cobalt Audio Card Drives Dolby Support

Dolby Labs creates audio, video, and voice technologies that transform entertainment and communications.

SAN FRANCISCO—Dolby Labs creates audio, video, and voice technologies that transform entertainment and communications. Research and development is the base of what we do, but we also support broadcasters deliver exceptional audio experiences.

We enable broadcasters to learn about, test, and launch Dolby technologies on their systems. Often, my team works with a partner to launch a Dolby-enabled channel or to support sports or entertainment events. Our role is to own the entire audio path—acquisition to delivery—working with source, mezzanine, and delivery audio formats, and mixing multiple audio-signal types, like baseband digital audio, MADI, and audio in SDI.

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The 9374 openGear card can route channels in any combination of up to four SDI streams, discrete AES-3id and AES-10 MADI interfaces.KNOWN COMMODITY
Having used Cobalt’s audio-related openGear cards for awhile, we assembled new flight kits for our on-site support services with Cobalt products built in for flexibility and power.

The Cobalt 9374 quad-stream SDI-AESMADI embedder/de-embedder openGear card does everything for digital-audio conversion and embedding/de-embedding. Its unrestricted audio crosspoint routes any combination of channels up to four SDI streams, discrete AES-3id, and AES-10 MADI interfaces. We designed entire systems around the 9374 using other Cobalt products, such as the 9922 frame sync card, 9363 reference generator, and 9410 HD-SDI distribution amplifier.

ON THE BIG STAGE
Recently Dolby provided on-site services to a major international broadcaster during an international sporting event in South America. The entire event was broadcast in 4K and HDR, but the opening night broadcast also used Dolby Atmos’ immersive audio experience. To demonstrate its ability to deliver programming in 4K, HDR, and Dolby Atmos simultaneously, the broadcaster transmitted the opening night broadcast to VIP viewing parties in the U.S. using all three next-generation broadcast technologies.

All audio embedding was done through the 4K Dolby Atmos kit we designed specifically for this event. The kit contained a Cobalt frame with two Cobalt 9374 cards in redundant signal paths, along with other complementary Cobalt cards. The 9374 was the lynchpin, as it ingested audio within SDI and MADI, shuffled the tracks and channels, and output the desired channel and track order in the desired target format.

The Cobalt frame inside my 4K Dolby Atmos kit was reliable during the setup, rehearsals, and broadcast and exhibited no downtime, faults, or signal loss. It did everything I asked of it and provided exceptional flexibility, allowing me to adapt the kit’s signal flow to meet the tehcnical demands.

The Cobalt team was proactive in helping us choose the right cards for every kit, responsive to our questions, and provided test cards to make sure they fit our needs.

Mike Babbitt is the broadcast support director, professional support for Dolby Laboratories Inc. He can be contacted at broadcastsupport@dolby.com.

For more information, please visit www.cobaltdigital.comor call 800-699-1691.