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Tandberg Television Introduces 8VSB Demodulator, Supports SCTE 35

Tandberg Television plans to launch a multi-channel 8VSB demodulator for cable headends at the upcoming Cable-Tec Expo in Philadelphia next month.

The TT6300 MediaLink is designed to take off-air 8VSB DTV signals and demodulate them into individual ASI streams for remultiplexing and remodulation prior to transport through the cable network. With the TT6300, cable operators can feed existing off-air transmissions while adding DTV channels to their systems. Up to 13 demodulated channels can occur in one 3 RU chassis and, when positioned at a central headend or local network hub, the demodulator accepts transmissions directly from the antenna and demodulates them to an ASI format. The ASI output signals are then forwarded either to a cable headend multiplexer or directly to a digital cable modulator.

The unit also supports PSIP table modification capabilities.

In related news, the company also announced that it had recently adopted the American National Standard SCTE 35 for digital program insertion through its MPEG-2 encoders for the North American digital cable market.

The Society of Cable Telecommunications Engineers' standard lets cable operators provide localized programming and gain new revenue through local ad insertion. The SCTE 35 specification inserts digital "cue tones" into the output of the encoder to alert affiliates of opportunities to add local content. The affiliate can then use the cue tones to trigger switches from the network feed to a local advertisement, promo or other program. The Tandberg encoders can also feed the digital cue tones for simultaneous digital satellite distribution to both digital and analog cable systems.

"For years, analog cable operators have reliably triggered headend equipment for local program content insertion," said Giles Wilson, principal systems architect for Tandberg Television. "There is now a digital equivalent that allows cable operators to splice out of a network feed and into a local advertisement or promo."

Tandberg has SCTE 35 support for its E5710 1 RU and E5720 2 RU encoders.