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New '4G' NXP Tuner Poised to Replace Conventional Units

Last week NXP Semiconductors announced the availability of its new silicon tuner, the TDA18272, which it said "represents the fourth generation of silicon tuners designed by NXP."

The tuner supports all analog and digital DTV standards worldwide. Its 6mm x 6mm package includes RF tracking filters, IF selectivity and wide band gain control, eliminating the need for external components for RF and IF filtering. NXP claims the tuner meets the ATSC A/74 Recommended Practice for tuner performance along other world-wide specifications, including NorDig 2.0, NorDig cable, ARIB STD-B21 and OCUR.

According to NXP's TDA18272 product page the tuner's data sheet is "confidential", so actual performance specifications (sensitivity, adjacent channel rejection, and like parameters) are not available.

Robert Murray, Product Line TV Front End general manager and senior director at NXP Semiconductors, observed that silicon tuners such as his company's TDA18272 will be replacing CAN (conventional "can-enclosed") tuners, just as vacuum tubes were replaced by the transistor.

"TV broadcast tuners are evolving rapidly, with older analog technologies becoming obsolete by silicon tuners," Murray said. "NXP's silicon tuners speed up the design-in process, save production costs and improve performance. They also save space in multi-tuner systems and reduce energy requirements."

NXP said the TDA18272 is available immediately and priced at US$ 1.50 per unit.

Doug Lung is one of America's foremost authorities on broadcast RF technology. He has been with NBC since 1985 and is currently vice president of broadcast technology for NBC/Telemundo stations.