Pioneer Electronics has begun shipping its Voyager 3510HD digital set-top box to Time Warner Cable. With the Voyager 3510HD, cable customers will have the ability to view high-definition programs in all 16 ATSC formats supported by the cable industry including 720p, 1080i, as well as 4:3 and 16:9 aspect ratios. The set-top also supports full graphics over HD capability with video scaling, allowing cable customers to enjoy uninterrupted HD content while viewing program descriptions or utilizing other capabilities of an interactive program guide.
Aspect ratio control is accomplished via an onscreen interface that lets users set zoom, stretch or letterbox aspects based on their personal viewing preferences. (Pioneer Electronics, 310-952-2507, www.pioneerbroadband.com)
Targeting IP VOD
Adtec Digital is partnering with Callisto Media Systems to develop end-to-end solutions for IP video-on-demand (VOD). Adtec has integrated its encoders and decoders with Callisto’s Voyager video server platform. Voyager provides the infrastructure to ingest, store, manage, control and distribute video content between the encoders and decoders. The solution provides end users with a virtual video repository, and a wide selection of services and features that can be used to enhance the video material. (Adtec, 615-256-6619, www.adtecinc.com; Callisto, 819-770-5738, www.callisto.ca)
Radiant Communications released its new DL230 bandwidth selectable managed 100-megabit transceiver. The product allows a user to select bandwidth throughput from 250 kbps to 100 Mbps in each direction. The unit also can be asymmetrical. SNMP management is included and can be either in band or out of band.
According to Radiant, the DL230 is suitable for serving business customers that need to grow their bandwidth applications quickly without having costly equipment upgrades. Multiple versions are available for one- and two-fiber applications, with distance options of more than 100 kilometers. CWDM and DWDM configurations also are available. (Radiant Communications, 800-969-3427, www.RCCFiber.com)
Fiber Channel Test Module
EXFO Electro-Optical Engineering launched its Packet Blazer SAN FTB-8515 Fiber Channel test module for installation and commissioning of emerging storage area network (SAN)-based services in carrier markets.
The Packet Blazer SAN module, which is contained inside EXFO’s FTB-400 field-testing platform, provides field technicians with accurate bit-error rate (BER) values that reflect the quality of their transmission systems. The test module also features the ability to qualify the delay or latency introduced by the transport network, which is a critical element in deploying SAN-based services. (EXFO, 800-663-3936, www.exfo.com)
Internet Photonics unveiled its LightStack GSLAM (gigabit services line access multiplexer). This new optical platform integrates optical transport, access service aggregation, switching and add/drop multiplexing in one device. The GSLAM handles up to 64 GigE connections, and supports Internet Photonic’s SONET Wrap-Around capability, which allows the product to be inserted onto fiber facilities already in use, adding new services without disruption.
The GSLAM is a NEBS-compliant, nine RU chassis-based platform with eight service module slots. Two service modules are immediately available: an eight-port GigE module and a one-port 10 Gbps dense wavelength division multiplexing (DWDM) trunk module. (Internet Photonics, 508-480-6708, www.internetphotonics.com)
Drop-in Replacement Amp
dB-troncis launched its new dB-III, a drop-in replacement amp for Scientific-Atlanta System Amp II and System Amp III amplifiers. It is available in 870, 750 and 550 MHz configurations. The new amp, which utilizes GaAs technology, features several design improvements. For example, dB-tronics reports that the 870 MHz version will extend bandwidth to a minimum 870 MHz (typically 910 MHz) while lowering the current drain by approximately 30 percent and keeping the price equal to a remanufactured unit.
By using the dB-III, cable engineers can extend a 750 MHz system to 870 MHz without modifying the housing lids, and the amp uses all standard 550 or 750 MHz plug-ins. An on-board voltage monitor will alert the technician if the DC voltage drops below 22 volts. The dB-III is manufactured on a single circuit board, which can be configured by the factory as a high-gain, low-gain or unbalanced-triple. (dB-tronics, 800-356-2730, www.dbtronics.com)
Status Monitoring Transponder
Electroline developed a new DOCSIS-HMS transponder technology (DHT) for managing, monitoring and controlling HFC network devices. Designed to report critical status and performance information to a remote or centralized manager monitor, the transponder’s main function is to control, alarm and manage HFC equipment in the outside plant, whether the transponder is installed inside HFC equipment such as standby power supplies, fiber nodes and optical amplifiers or as stand-alone independent network test points (end-of-line monitors). The design is based on the combination of three standards: (1) DOCSIS for the PHY and MAC layer protocol; (2) SNMP; and (3) SCTE Hybrid Management Sublayer spec. Electroline says this approach uses existing DOCSIS cable modem facilities as the communications channel, which alleviates the need for specialized hardware controllers and modems at the headend. Additionally, it eliminates the need to reserve a downstream and upstream RF channel to carry the communications between the managed device and the headend. (Electroline, 514-374-6335, www.electrolinequip.com)
New Laser Diode Modules
California Eastern Labs introduced a new series of 2.5 gigabits per second (Gbps) and 10 Gbps laser modules from NEC. Developed for dense wavelength division multiplexing (DWDM) applications, they feature:
Monolithically integrated laser modulator chip
Integrated Fabry-Perot Etalon filter and two photodiodes
Low dispersion penalty
Low modulation voltage
Low power consumption
Three versions of NEC’s 2.5G NX8567 Series modules are available:
NX8567SA—for 600 km applications
NX8567SAM—for 360 km applications
NX8567SAS—for 240 km applications
The 10G NX8560SJ Series modules are designed for use in DWDM systems and 10 G transponders. (CEL, 408-588-2285, www.cel.com)
DOCSIS 2.0 Modem
ARRIS unveiled its new DOCSIS 2.0 Touchstone Cable Modem 450A (CM450A). The CM450A can be positioned on a desk either vertically or horizontally with no additional hardware needed. It also has a built-in wall-mount option. For home networking ease, it features both USB and Ethernet ports that can be used simultaneously, meaning that consumers can use one cable modem for two PCs at the same time. It also contains a standby button that allows subscribers to suspend communication between their computer and the Internet for additional security. When in standby mode, the modem does not deregister from the operator’s CMTS, so no unnecessary error messages are sent back to the headend. (ARRIS, 687-473-8327, www.arrisi.com)
DSG-CANUSA launched its new CFTV QuickSeal, an adhesive lined wrap-around, heat-shrinkable sleeve that can be applied without interruption of service. CFTV QuickSeal is suitable for the protection of housing-to-housing connectors, repair of squirrel-damaged cable, repair of fiber nicks, and retrofit protection of connectors.
DSG-CANUSA says CFTV QuickSeal achieves complete environmental sealing in all applications, because it uses the same adhesive and thermochromatic lines as used in CANUSA CFTV. It is available in a standard size of 36 by 7 inches (DSG-CANUSA, 416-744-5559, www.dsgcanusa.com)
Narrowcast QAM Amp
PCI Technologies Inc. has added narrowcast QAM amplifiers to its MAXNET RF management platform. The new high-density platform supports up to 16 amplifiers in a 5RU chassis. This solution was made possible by fitting two amplifiers into an existing MAXNET amplifier module housing. Highpass filters in each amplifier suppress QAM distortions ensuring that out-of-band performance is not deteriorated after RF combining. This product is suited for narrowcast applications where there are significant RF losses resulting from typical narrowcast/broadcast combining techniques as well as cable response at high frequencies. (PCI Technologies, 800-565-7488 x.238, www.pci.com)
Coring, Stripping Tool
Ripley has developed the CST320/7C QRF, a new coring and stripping tool designed specifically for MDU 320 CommScope Quantum Reach (QR) cables. The CST320/7C QRF comes factory set to core and strip the required preparation dimensions for the Gilbert GAF-360-320, Thomas & Betts Snap-N-Seal 320 QR "F" and PPC EX320 connectors.
The CST320/7C QRF completes coring and stripping in three operations:
Core and strip the cable end.
Remove center conductor residual dielectric with built-in center conductor cleaner.
Remove the proper length of outer jacket while chamfering the center conductor.
(Ripley, 800-528-8665, www.ripley-tools.com)
Telephony for MDUs
Blonder Tongue unveiled its new LincXpress system for the multiple dwelling unit (MDU) telephony market. The system is comprised of two main pieces of hardware—LoopXpress concentrator and LineXpress multiplexer. The system starts at a telco class 5 switch. A T-1 line is routed from the switch and brought to the MDU. The T-1 is connected to the LoopXpress Concentrator, which monitors, manages and routes up to 384 phone lines with a single shelf. The telephone information is routed to the LineXpress Multiplexer, which converts the digital format into analog voice frequencies for transmission to up to 12 independent resident telephone lines. (Blonder Tongue, 732-679-4000, www.blondertongue.com)
CherryPicker Gets GigE Interface
Terayon has added a gigabit Ethernet (GigE) interface to its DM6400 Network CherryPicker, a second generation MPEG-2 digital streams management system. The DM6400 provides statistical remultiplexing functionality as well as advanced stream processing, rate shaping and network distribution capabilities.
The unit enables operators to:
Customize programming lineups by "cherry picking" from a variety of content sources.
Generate ad revenues by inserting digital ads for local advertisers into digital programming.
Deliver high definition (HD) and standard definition (SD) channels by rate shaping digital programming to free needed bandwidth.
Implement a distributed media architecture to speed digital rollouts and reduce costs.
(Terayon, 408-235-5500, www.terayon.com)
QAM Integration for VOD
BigBand Networks unveiled its VOD Edge platform, which integrates dense quadrature amplitude modulation (QAM) and RF upconversion with the company’s Broadband Multimedia-Service Router (BMR). BigBand VOD Edge terminates gigabit networking onto the cable hybrid fiber/coax network. This takes advantage of BigBand BMR’s gigabit Ethernet protocol conversion, and its new card with QAM-modulated, RF-upconverted outputs. The QAM card’s density leverages the BMR’s media processing to conserve power consumption and headend space.
BigBand says that further space advantages are derived by combining the BMR’s integrated high-speed switching with QAM, which also streamlines network configuration for even greater cost-effectiveness and ease of use. Media processing at the network edge also drives de-jittering, which the company claims assures video transmission without compromising viewing quality, even when transported from centralized VOD servers via complex IP interconnects. (BigBand, 415-672-5548, www.bigbandnet.com)
Inside Plant Management
SPATIALinfo released its new inventory management tool kit for broadband facility equipment. Dubbed "Inside Plant Management," the software tools enable the engineering and drafting operations of cable companies to provide a "live," maintainable data environment for managing operations at the master headend, primary hub and secondary hub facilities out to premise equipment, and a reliable base for future planning.
By providing a full line of design, construction, QA, as-built and engineering software tools for inside plant, a variety of existing engineering information can be converted into an open RDBMS environment. The company says the resulting spatial-relational database is capable of managing the data, including connectivity, required by engineering operations. Data mining can be performed against this information using standard database query and reporting functions, minimizing the time and effort needed to provide valuable data to other parts of the organization. (SPATIALinfo, 303-884-4471, www.spatialinfo.com)