Tandberg Heads Down Under With SBS

Special Broadcasting Service (SBS), Australia’s multicultural and multilingual public broadcaster, has selected Tandberg’s IP-based iSIS 8000 headend architecture for its Digital Terrestrial Television (DTT) network.
Tandberg Television is supplying SD and HDTV encoders, dense multiplexing, and embedded SFN (Single Frequency Network) adaptation, all based on a core of flexible IP switching. The deal confirms Tandberg Television’s leadership in the Australian DTT market: the company’s compression headends are now used for four of the country’s five national digital terrestrial networks.
SBS’s digital-television services began in January 2001 and currently reach an estimated 96% of the Australian population. The new centralized headend will generate DVB-T transport streams for 12 separate regions. This is the first deployment of Tandberg Television’s iSIS 8000 IP headend architecture for the Australian DTT market and is the first deployment worldwide of dense SFN adaptation as part of the Tandberg MX8400 IP multiplexer.
“SBS Television is watched by more than 7 million Australians every week, and an increasing number of them choose to view in digital,” says Paul Broderick, director, Technology & Distribution, at SBS. “We are committed to expanding digital broadcasting to our diverse audience, and we are upgrading our DTT network to take advantage of the latest-generation headend technology. Tandberg Television was a natural choice, given their innovative digital terrestrial solutions and their proven track record in Australian DTT.”
Ward Hansford, Tandberg Television regional VP for ANZ & South Asia, says, “We are delighted that SBS has entrusted us with its next-generation compression and multiplexing requirements. We are proud to be delivering some notable firsts for SBS, including the first IP-based headend in Australian DTT and the world’s first deployment of our IP multiplexer with dense SFN adaptation.”
SBS is using Tandberg E5710 MPEG-2 SD and E5780 MPEG-2 HD encoders and the MX8400 IP multiplexer to output MPEG-2 transport streams with SFN adaptation. This configuration saves more than half a typical rack and considerable power and cooling needs associated with external adaptation. SFN processing is an important addition to the MX8400 IP multiplexer, which can support up to 16 transport streams in IP with SFN adaptation in a 2RU enclosure. Tandberg Television has been at the forefront of SFN technology within DTT, deploying the world’s first SFN system in 1999 and having deployed many systems with its previous-generation multiplexer.
“Whilst fully supportive of ASI-based headend systems, we are embracing IP throughout the DTT solution, all the way to the transmission site as part of our next-generation Digital Terrestrial Television architecture,” adds Simon Frost, business development director at Tandberg Television. “We are driving forward our clear market leadership in terrestrial networks, as experts in understanding the complex needs of SFN enabled DTT over IP.”

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