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DirecTV National HD Listing/Maps Discussion Thread (Technical - Not Anticipation)

Discussion in 'DIRECTV Programming' started by Sixto, May 29, 2012.

  1. Jun 2, 2012 #21 of 653
    James Long

    James Long Ready for Uplink! Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    The other guys were pushed into it a little faster by the lack of transponder space to stay at less channels per transponder. Regardless of the age of technology each encoder costs money ... and one can count on one hand the number of companies trying to multiplex multiple HD streams on dozens of transponders. At the level DBS providers are doing it, you could probably count it on two thumbs (think of all the HD local feeds - something that most companies don't have to deal with).

    Most companies who would need a multiplexer at all would need one ... and one as a backup. Some would need a second or third multiplexer and perhaps a shared backup. DBS companies would be the largest market needing multiplexers for every transponder on every satellite (including spot beams). But even with the high demand of DBS providers we are only talking about a marketplace for a thousand HD encoders. Maybe a couple thousand, but certainly not a huge marketplace.

    We are practically talking about individually built devices ... not cheap mass production runs of 10s of thousands or millions. And to get it right with industrial quality it is expensive. $100k each isn't out of the ballpark for such a complicated device.

    Hopefully that answers your question about the scope and costs of the encoders ... and we can get back to watching the skies for any changes to DirecTV's HD transponders - the purpose of this thread.
     
  2. Jun 2, 2012 #22 of 653
    cypherx

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    Yeah but that's in MPEG2. It's packaged for cable operators so all they need to do is pull that stream into a QAM for redistribution.
     
  3. Jun 2, 2012 #23 of 653
    maartena

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    I would imagine, that since there is only 2 DBS satellite providers, operating about 10 or so satellites between the two, that any equipment made specifically for their operations, is not a mass produced piece you can order at any online electronica outlet, but custom built, custom ordered to the exact specifications DirecTV needs. It is very possible that current equipment needs to be replaced, or re-customized to make this happen.

    Of course no one has a dollar figure, since when do companies like DirecTV disclose what they pay for things? But you can bet that since it is all proprietary, custom built, it is going to be WAY beyond you might think it cost, and then double that. :p
     
  4. Jun 2, 2012 #24 of 653
    P Smith

    P Smith Mr. FixAnything

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    Some cables is going to MPEG4 and doing vivid attempts to get into cramming technology ...
     
  5. Jun 2, 2012 #25 of 653
    RAD

    RAD Well-Known Member

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    Dripping...
    Don't forget the rest of the world, there is more then just DIRECTV and Dish out there needing hardware like this.
     
  6. Jun 2, 2012 #26 of 653
    James Long

    James Long Ready for Uplink! Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    Disclosure would be the problem. Those that know the exact cost can't say. Those that have a better idea of such equipment understand how expensive such a device must be.

    There are other countries using MPEG4 and HD but even worldwide I'd put DISH and DirecTV at the top of the need list. What other country has to deal with a thousand (more or less) HD local channels? Some day everything available in HD will be carried in HD. Getting there isn't cheap.

    Alsp The entire world does not use the same standards for television or HD - which tends to separate the technology. What works there may not translate.
     
  7. Jun 2, 2012 #27 of 653
    maartena

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    What makes you think European and Asian satellite broadcasters use an American manufacturer and not use a local one e.g. a German or Japanese manufacturer? They have a whole different history (PAL/NTSC, 50hz vz 60hz, etc), and it is very likely they too use very customized equipment that isn't the same between broadcasters there either.

    It's not that simple.
     
  8. Jun 2, 2012 #28 of 653
    RAD

    RAD Well-Known Member

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    Dripping...
    And what makes you think that DIRECTV isn't using hardware made overseas? How much hardware in the video industry is USA made anymore? Back in college, back in the 70's, broadcast cameras we used were made by RCA or GE. Now all you see are Sony or Panasonic, both made in countries that use a different standard. VTR's came from RCA or Ampex. IIRC hasn't Tandberg which is owned by a Ericsson of Sweden has sold MPEG4 encoders to DIRECTV.
     
  9. Jun 3, 2012 #29 of 653
    Sixto

    Sixto Well-Known Member

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    Most likely they're moving to EN8190 encoders.

    "Tandberg also introduced the EN8190 HD encoder, an MPEG-4 4:2:0 product aimed at direct-to-home (DTH) satellite applications as well as the IPTV market. Goldman says the EN8190 represents a 20-25% improvement in bit-rate efficiency over the company's previous MPEG-4 4:2:0 model, enough for a DTH operator to add one more HD channel per satellite transponder. Tandberg was demonstrating the EN8190 delivering six HD channels in 30 Mbps of bandwidth using its statistical multiplexing technology."
     
  10. Jun 3, 2012 #30 of 653
    TheRatPatrol

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    SWEET! :D
     
  11. Jun 3, 2012 #31 of 653
    Sixto

    Sixto Well-Known Member

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    Also to be clear, that quote was from late 2009, but after the D10/D11 buildouts, and probably also too late for D12.
     
  12. Jun 3, 2012 #32 of 653
    bobnielsen

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    Bainbridge...
    Since the encoders are installed at the uplink facilities, what does that have to to with the satellite transponders (possibly bandwidth/linearity?)
     
  13. Jun 3, 2012 #33 of 653
    P Smith

    P Smith Mr. FixAnything

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    And looks like Tandberg is a part of Ericsson now ...
     
  14. Jun 3, 2012 #34 of 653
    Shades228

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  15. Jun 3, 2012 #35 of 653
    Racer88

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    Yeah that kinda stumped me too. :confused: You guys certainly know a lot more about this than I do, but from skimming the technologies being talked about it seems to me more about increasing the efficiency and robustness of the datastreams being sent than anything else. IOW less bits and bytes used for error correction and such, means more room for bits and bytes that are actual content.

    Anywho the encoders are available, and have been for ~3 years, obviously. In comibination with DVB-S2, which apparently DirecTV also has, it would seem 6 channels per TP are pretty much a done deal given the evidence that's already presented itself. Add in the Erricson PREKOR technology, no idea if DirecTV has that, then it's possibly up to 8 channels per TP even.
     
  16. Jun 3, 2012 #36 of 653
    inkahauts

    inkahauts Well-Known Member

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    I think the point was that they had bought the encoders for use with the new satelites before this new encoder was on the market, so that's why they didn't start off with these encoders, and instead will need to replace their existing encoders to upgrade. They would not have waited to launch channels to get new encoders.
     
  17. Jun 3, 2012 #37 of 653
    Racer88

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    Oh yeah, duh, that makes perfect sense now. hehe

    Per this article
    http://www.multichannel.com/article/451205-DirecTV_To_Deliver_3DTV_With_Harmonic_Encoders.php

    It would seem that maybe their long standing encoder provider Harmonic Inc. may be the best first place to look for whatever new solution it is that they are using.
    http://www.harmonicinc.com/pr_broadcast-encoding.cfm

    Their relatively new Electra 9000 supports broadcast, mobile, and web services so that seems to fit DirecTV Everywhere too.
     
  18. Jun 3, 2012 #38 of 653
    Sixto

    Sixto Well-Known Member

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    Here's an old thread which starts with an article on a $9M deal with Tandberg:
    I'm also thinking that I may create a new thread for this discussion, since we don't usually use this thread for discussion.
     
  19. Jun 3, 2012 #39 of 653
    Sixto

    Sixto Well-Known Member

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    Now that the clean-up is complete, and we're in this new thread.

    The point of this discussion is that DirecTV has both Harmonic and Tandberg encoders.

    Most of the technology (on the ground) was deployed prior to the launches of D10, D11, and D12.

    There is now latest-and-greatest technology that provides for better use of the bandwidth. As an example, the Tandberg EN8190 encoders:
    "Tandberg also introduced the EN8190 HD encoder, an MPEG-4 4:2:0 product aimed at direct-to-home (DTH) satellite applications as well as the IPTV market. Goldman says the EN8190 represents a 20-25% improvement in bit-rate efficiency over the company's previous MPEG-4 4:2:0 model, enough for a DTH operator to add one more HD channel per satellite transponder. Tandberg was demonstrating the EN8190 delivering six HD channels in 30 Mbps of bandwidth using its statistical multiplexing technology."​

    In order to utilize the new technology, it would require an investment, which it appears that DirecTV may be embarking on with the recent addition of TruTV HD and E! HD as a 6th HD channel on two transponders.
     
  20. Jun 3, 2012 #40 of 653
    bobnielsen

    bobnielsen Éminence grise

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    Bainbridge...
    It's been a while, but I recall seeing something about Directv already having 6 HD channels per transponder on some of the spotbeams (or does my memory fail me, which is certainly a possibility at my age?)
     

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