Page 1

Rigger's Digest News for the TV & Satellite Industry

Spring 2001

Inside: ONdigital STB’s under review Unaohm EP314 with COFDM Humax’s latest range of receivers Riggers risk heavy fines from TV licensing Digibox news from Sky Dual feed solutions How the CAI can benefit your business Latest product news from Triax Technical Solutions

Digital Sky SMATV, just in time!


No unnecessary engineer call-outs.

simple. flexible. secure. A SMATV Digibox Rack that makes installation easier.

System will automatically reboot and reset any or all digiboxes as required.

Fast to install, tamperproof in use. Fully integrated system in one secure lockable cabinet.

A name you can trust. Global Communications are world famous for quality and reliability.

Encryption updates very simple. Cards are easily changed or updated once front cover is unlocked.

Program changes very simple. Channel changes can be made to suit the customer or broadcasters requirements Quality assured at all times. Special control unit monitors video and audio output of each BSkyB digibox.

Easy to maintain. Up to 5 BSkyB digiboxes may be installed. BSkyB units are not modified in any way.

Support you can trust. Solutions Group will assist installers with advice, system design and product supply.

Expansion very simple. Units are pre-wired for all 5 BSkyB digiboxes, even if you only start with a few.

Included within each Rack: Built-in SMC (SMATV Master Controller) IF Multiswich Equaliser Combiner with variable pre-amp Cooling Fans Full mains distribution

Flexibility for any installation.* Integration with other services is possible such as CCTV, digital terrestrial tv, etc.

Available from your local trade supplier: Northampton [HQ] 01604 787888 Fax. 01604 787999 Dorset 01202 624441 Fax. 01202 632453 Berkshire 01344 621531 Fax. 01344 624526 Woolwich 0208 316 0123 Fax. 0208 316 0126

Wembley 0208 451 1777 Fax. 0208 451 1223 Hertfordshire 01992 789650 Fax. 01992 789651 Birmingham 0121 544 0220 Fax. 0121 544 0440 Nottingham 0115 982 6400 Fax. 0115 982 6020

Cheshire 01260 299658 Fax. 01260 299674 Sheffield 0114 2880111 Fax. 0114 2880333 Manchester 0161 746 8595 Fax. 0161 746 8596 East Yorkshire 01482 222295 Fax. 01482 222213

Leeds 0113 236 1111 Fax. 0113 236 1122 Tyne & Wear 0191 487 7676 Fax. 0191 487 6699 Glasgow 0141 849 7440 Fax. 0141 849 7445 Edinburgh 0131 448 2900 Fax. 0131 448 2626

*Subject to circumstances. Š 2000 Solutions Group (UK) Plc. Reproduction Prohibited. All offers subject to availability and may be changed without prior notice. All prices exclude VAT, CP&I, E&OE.


News for the TV & Satellite Industry

With the revolutionary Digital Age now well and truly upon us, you need to be aware of the latest products available to today’s consumers in order to satisfy their demands and stay ahead of the rest. In this edition we review the latest high performance equipment designed to receive and distribute digital terrestrial and digital satellite signals in both commercial and domestic applications. But we haven’t forgotten all those analogue systems still in operation out there! Many of the products included in this

Contents

Rigger's Digest issue are compatible with analogue as well as digital systems which demonstrates the flexibility of modern day TV and Satellite equipment. These products have undoubtedly catapulted the industry into the 21st century and will eventually leave the analogue era behind, to give us all a clearer picture of the future! Fay Bliss Editor

Product News Latest Sky digiboxes New amplifiers from Labgear Global’s SMATV Digibox Rack One-cable solution for the motorised dish Latest range of receivers from Humax Unaohm’s EP314 with COFDM DTT ready MATV amplifiers ONdigital STB’s under review A closer look at the Global Loftbox SG8 Super A aerial from FR Digital ready distribution equipment by Triax

4 4 5 6 8 11 12 13 15 16 20

In General National Customer Service Centre introduced Solutions Sheffield now open Dual feed saves free to air channels Riggers risk heavy fines from TV Licensing Benefits of becoming a CAI member tv-installers.com update

2 3 7 14 18 22

Regulars Dish of the Day Technical Solutions

21 24

Tel: 01604 787888 Fax: 01604 787999 e-mail: marketing@solutionsgroup-plc.com www.solutionsgroup-plc.com © 2001 Solutions Group (UK) Plc. Reproduction Prohibited. E&OE.

Spring 2001

Riggers Digest Solutions Group (UK) Plc National Headquarters, 1 Hartburn Close, Crow Lane Industrial Park, Northampton NN3 9UE

1


News

new staff The Accounts Team at Headquarters in Northampton warmly welcomes Liz Hackett who has been appointed Financial Controller. Liz has many years experience working in similarly structured companies and has been brought in to head the expanding Accounts Department. “It is essential that we have accurate and extensive financial information to enable us to secure long term plans and continue to give our customers the best value,” said Liz.

Adam Monaghan is the latest addition to join the expanding Accounts Team. Adam joins as Accounts Administrator and comes from a background in finance. “As we open more depots across the country, our customer database is expanding at a phenomenal rate. It is important that this database is maintained correctly in order to ensure our account holders receive important information and promotional updates”, said Adam.

Kevin Aldred joins Kerry Laughton in the Purchasing Department. Kevin comes from a background in purchasing and is very keen to support our Product Evaluation procedure.

Spring 2001 2

“Before we stock a product, it is evaluated by our team of technical experts. As a result, product specifications can be changed or improved to ensure our customers always have access to top quality equipment”, said Kevin.

Solutions Group opens National Customer Service Centre Even the most reliable products can fail which is why Solutions Group has just introduced a National Customer Service Centre providing front line assistance to retailers and installers around the UK. Customer Services Supervisor Mike Thomas said: “Customers were previously advised to return faulty products to their local Solutions Group depot. But we have now established a central service point which will help reduce the turn around time by half. “As a ‘first line’ service centre, we can decide instantly whether or not a product should be sent to our in-house Repair Centre. This means products can be replaced or repaired in the minimum time. “Because we deal with such highly specified products, the combination of items can cause unexpected problems. We can also identify these non-fault problems

Customer Services Supervisor Mike Thomas

Customer Services Advisor Martin Coughlan

straight away and offer the customer an appropriate solution. “Top quality after sales care is an important aspect of any distribution company which is why we provide such an efficient service. We strive to ensure complete customer satisfaction is always achieved,” continued Mike. To contact the Customer Services Centre call 01604 788212.

Competition Winner Kenny Manderson of D. Manderson’s in Strathclyde is the proud owner of a brand new Bosch GBH 24VFR drill and bits after winning our Christmas competition. Kenny, who was presented with his prize at Solutions Group’s Glasgow depot by Sales Engineer David Bryson, is delighted with his new two in one super drill. “It’s a fantastic bit of kit! The free bits are an added bonus and will certainly come in handy when I’m installing systems in the conditions we are accustomed to here in Scotland,” said Kenny.

New Low Price! 7mm clips

Quick and easy to use Secure fixing of cables to a wide range of surfaces

As aslow

69

pe

rb

ox

p


Solutions Group is pleased to announce a new trade outlet in Sheffield. Headed by Depot Supervisor Mike Sendell and Sales Engineer Neil Tasker, the trade counter will serve riggers across South Yorkshire offering advice and support on product suitability and techniques in this digital age.

new staff

consideration when selecting the right equipment. “ “We stock hundreds of products from a wide range of manufacturers which means we do our best to maximise product performance by supplying compatible items”, said Mike. This new branch is the sixteenth depot to be opened by Solutions Group in the UK.

Both Mike and Neil are experienced trade suppliers of digital and analogue equipment and understand that as distributors, their role involves a lot more than just supplying the equipment. “The TV and satellite industry is very specialised, which is why we offer a service providing advice on the best products for the job. The location and size of the installation are factors which affect product suitability and need to be taken into

Depot Supervisor Mike Sendell

Sales Engineer Neil Tasker

J34 M18

J33

M1

J32

WE ARE HERE!! ASTON

J31

AY ILW

RA

A57

GE

ID

BR

PARKWAY

X

WOODHOUSE MILL

M1

SHEFFIELD

John, who comes from a background in electrical retailing and has extensive knowledge of the TV and Satellite industry, will be working alongside Field Sales Executive, Spencer Payne, and National Accounts Manager Richard Stallworthy. “As the company grows from strength to strength, we are keen to bring our services to the doorsteps of more and more installers and retailers around the UK. I am particularly looking forward to developing our customer base in the Midlands region. New and existing customers in this area can now benefit from a one-to-one service offering suitable solutions for all their TV and Satellite requirements.”

Bill has many years experience as a Team Leader within a large Telecommunications company and he is eager to develop his knowledge of the industry. “I will be working closely with Sales Engineers Lee and Jonny to ensure we continue to provide top quality products at affordable prices.”

New depot location map

HIGHQUALITY

MASTHEAD AMPLIFIERS Quick fit nylon strap mast mount. Up to 60mm masts White case reflects heat for stability Screened centre conductor connections SMD components for reliability and performance

ES1Q

John Riley is the latest field based Sales Executive to join Solutions Group.

Bill Strachan has been appointed Depot Supervisor at Solutions Group, Manchester.

B6200 ASDA SUPERSTORE

News

Sheffield Solutions

ES2RU

12dBGAIN

22dBGAIN

10-25dBGAIN

28mA

50mA

55mA

VARIABLE

Prices including Power Supply Unit

£6.99 £7.99 £8.99

David had been a TV and Satellite installer for many years before joining Solutions Group, so he fully understands the requirements of installers and retailers in the region. “I am delighted to be part of one the UK’s leading trade suppliers of TV and Satellite reception and distribution equipment. Our technical advice, product knowledge and special offers are hard to beat. As a sales engineer, I am looking forward to advising customers on products best suited to their individual needs.”

Spring 2001

ES2Q

David Mitchell has joined Solutions Group, Edinburgh, as a Sales Engineer.

3


ProductNews

Digibox News... The new BSkyB2500s is the fourth generation digibox to be released by leading manufacturer Pace since the launch of Sky Digital back in 1999. This improved model has been fitted with the revolutionary ST5512 processor, making the overall performance of this unit considerably faster than its predecessors.

Labgear launch Amps to extend Sky viewing Labgear has introduced two new amplifiers to compliment its existing range of reliable distribution equipment. The MSR 120 ( two way) and MSR 140 (four way) are multioutput amplifiers which can be installed alongside infra-red remote control links to extend Sky digital home entertainment systems. The installation of these amplifiers enables the distribution of digital television to up to four TV’s in one home.

The advanced chip set incorporates a number of functions which could only be previously achieved by more than one chip. As a result, the digibox uses less power and is significantly more reliable. Although it’s facia design remains the same as the BSkyB2500, it does have a modern silver finish which characterises this new generation of digibox. Panasonic has replaced the popular TUDSB30 with an even faster machine, the TU-DSB31.

Consumers can not only receive high quality pictures on these secondary TVs, but with the amplifiers dual-function return path, they can also control the digibox’s channel programming via an additional Sky remote. All outputs can be used for remote control return to the digibox which maximises viewing options. The amplifiers are designed to support Labgear’s Digilink remote control extender kits, but are also compatible with the Sky TV link eye making them suitable for a wide range of domestic applications. The amps have a gain of 4dB-6dB and cover the frequency range of 88-862MHz.

Unlike some amplifiers which draw their power source from the Sky digibox, the Labgear amplifiers are supplied with their own mains connection. This not only reduces power consumption from the settop-box, but also ensures a more reliable system throughout. The amplifier provides a power supply to the infra-red extender, which again alleviates the pressure off the digibox and enhances the performance of the distribution system. The self-contained nature of the amplifier means that the infra-red signals are passed back along the input cable coming from the Sky digibox. Therefore, it does not have to be positioned next to the equipment but can be placed at any convenient location within the distribution system. The diagram below clearly demonstrates how the amplifier can be used in a domestic location to distribute digital satellite television to more than one TV. For more contact Solutions Group’s Technical Team on 01604 787888 or at technical@solutionsgroup-plc.com.

BOOSTER

Suitable Outlet

This latest set-top-box for the Sky digital platform has been fitted with a faster chip set, allowing consumers to access EPG information and interactive services with outstanding speed. The entire design of the Panasonic digibox has been modernised, incorporating a pure silver finish in a smaller set-top box to compliment most home entertainment systems.

tv2

Infra-red Extender Kits

Suitable Outlet

Infra-red Extender Kits

Grundig’s latest digibox to be released into the UK market is the new ‘turbo charged’ GDS310/2. Although it looks exactly the same as the GDS310, the unit’s electronic performance has been significantly enhanced.

Main Television

Video Recorder

Spring 2001 4

RF OUT-1

It has an added SVHS socket located under the phono connections for improved picture quality as well as a redesigned chip set, enabling efficient access to interactive TV and Sky programming.

RF OUT-2 Sky Digibox

tv1

in


ProductNews

Global design SMATV digibox rack in time for Sky analogue turn off As BSkyB prepares to turn off all analogue transmissions broadcasting from Astra 19.2, thousands of hotels and other large complexes around the country will require new digital satellite systems in order to continue to provide their guests with Sky programming. Global Communications has launched a fully integrated SMATV Digibox Rack, enabling installers to perform digital upgrades with speed and simplicity. The rack, which can hold up to five digiboxes, is housed in a secure lockable cabinet and has been designed to

incorporate a Satellite Master Controller (SMC). This system automatically reboots and resets the digiboxes if it recognises a mains failure or a picture deficiency. Therefore, engineer call outs are minimised and channel programming is reinstated more quickly. For added security, the SMC can also be locked using a pin code to ensure configurations cannot be altered. Other integrated features include a 5x6 Global IF multiswitch, a PSU and a five channel wideband equaliser for levelling the RF output of the digiboxes before amplification and distribution. Cooling fans are located on the inner shelf to keep the digibox temperatures within normal operational parameters. The cabinet is pre-wired for all five Sky digiboxes so even if you only initially install two set-top boxes, additional receivers can be easily installed at a later date.

This birds eye view of the SMATV rack demonstrates the integrated functions of the unit

Channels can be easily changed according to the customer’s requirements when the cabinet door is unlocked. Encryption codes and software upgrades are automatically updated and cards can be changed without dismantling the front panel.

The rack can house a maximum of five digiboxes on their sides

The SMATV unit can be conveniently incorporated into most hotel systems which already have a SMATV system in place. In most cases it is just a matter of repositioning the satellite dish, fitting a Quattro LNB and adding the relevant splitters if more than one cabinet is to be used. The flexibility of the rack means that it can also be installed alongside many existing services including CCTV and Digital Terrestrial TV.

Digital Ready Service Centre Efficient in-house repair facility for analogue and digital systems Highly trained repair engineers Out of warranty products also serviced

Digital Satellite receivers repaired for only ÂŁ42!

solutionsgroup

(UK)Plc

Spring 2001

Contact Customer Services Tel: 01604 788212 e-mail: customer service@solutionsgroup-plc.com

5


Sky analogue will cease broadcasting from the ASTRA satellites located at 19.2º east in June, 2001. However, there are many other service providers broadcasting free-to-air channels from this location, which Sky analogue subscribers have been enjoying for almost 15 years. So is this the end of free-to-air channels as we know it? fig. 1

60cm d ish Existing dish

seco n d ary sig n al

AS T R A SKY D IG IT AL

28.2 east

p rim ary sig n al

AS T R A 19.2 SKY east ANALOGUE AN AO L G U E

fig. 2

60cm d ish Existing dish

seco n d ary sig n al

AS T R A SKY D IG IT AL

28.2 east

p rim ary sig n al

19.2 east

AS T R A D IG IT AL

ProductNews

Dual feed saves free-to-air channels To maximise your customer’s viewing experience, follow these 7 simple steps to programme extra free-to-air channels into the Sky digibox:

1. Press the service button. 2. Select option 4 for ‘System Setup’. 3. Select option 4 for ‘Add Channel’. 4. Enter the channel information you want to download to the box and press select.

S K Y AN AL O G U E B O X

S K Y D IG IT AL B O X

“Not necessarily,” said Solutions Group Technical Engineer Andy Bull, “it is possible to receive FTA (free-to-air) analogue channels transmitting from Astra 19.2º east, as well as the new Sky digital service broadcasting from Astra 28.2º east with simple modifications to the system. “In most cases, the consumer will already have a 60cm or 80cm dish in place for the Sky analogue service. Although it will be alligned to Astra 19.2º east, by simply adding an extra LNB arm and an LNB to the dish, both satellites can be received (see fig. 1). “The installation of a Sky digibox is obviously also required, but installers must bear in mind that the Sky digital dish is not efficient enough for most dual feed reception applications.” The majority of analogue channels are duplicated in digital which is why it is not always necessary to keep the analogue receiver. If the customer would like to add extra digital channels transmitting from Astra19.2º east to their viewing options, they can do so by adding a manual switch to the two feeds (see fig. 2).

S K Y D IG IT AL B O X

more than adequate for good reliable reception. Although the Sky digibox will allow the consumer to gain access to new and exciting digital channels, its performance as an FTA receiver is somewhat limited. It presently does not have any extra form of LNB switching, such as DiSEqC, so another cable must be run to the receiver. A manual LNB switch is required to switch between the two feeds. If you have installed the two feeds to the Sky digibox, the Sky digital signal must be available to the box overnight to enable card and software updates. The Sky digibox currently has a limited symbol rate range which means it can only download bouquets that match either 22000Mb/s or 27500Mb/s. In contrast to this, a dedicated FTA receiver, such as a Humax F1-FOX, has a much wider symbol rate, usually 2000Mb/s to 31000Mb/s, so more bouquets can be downloaded. The Sky digibox can also only store approximately 60 FTA channels where as a dedicated receiver can store a more impressive 2000+ channels. But installation of the Sky digibox is the most efficient way of receiving digital channels without increasing the cost of your customers system.

5. Once you have stored the channels you require, return to the service menu. 6. Select option 6 for ‘Other Channels’. 7. Select the channel you wish to Listed below is the channel information, including Frequency, Polarity, Symbol rate and FEC, of popular FTA digital channels broadcasting from Astra 19.2º east.

11.954

H

27500

3/4

Eurosport, Euronews, ZDF, ARTE, 3 Sat, Kinderkanal, ORF Sat.

12.363

V

27500

3/4

RTM1, ESC1, TV5 Europe, TV7 Tunisinie, RAI UNO, RTP INT, Deutsche Welle, ARTE

12.552

V

22000

5/6

Bloomberg, QVC, RTL Tele Letz, Sky News

12.552

V

22000

5/6

Video Italia, Alice, Liberty, Motors TV, Wishline

12.670

V

22000

5/6

V

22000

5/6

N-TV, VIVA For more advice on dual or triple feed installations, contact the Technical Team at Solutions Group on 01604 787888 or at: technical@solutionsgroup-plc.com

12.699 MTV

Spring 2001

If the existing LNB has a LO of 9.750GHz or 10GHz, a Universal LNB will need to be installed to receive a digital signal. By simply fitting the extra LNB and an LNB arm to a 60cm or 80cm dish, a second signal can be received and the customers viewing options are increased considerably. The secondary signal will be weaker than the primary one, but in most cases, it will be

M AN U AL S W IT C H

7


With this much choice, the sky's no longer the limit.

SRT 4375 Motorised Digital/ Analogue Satellite Receiver Available from your local trade supplier: Northampton [HQ] 01604 787888 Fax. 01604 787999 Dorset 01202 624441 Fax. 01202 632453 Berkshire 01344 621531 Fax. 01344 624526 Woolwich 0208 316 0123 Fax. 0208 316 0126

Wembley 0208 451 1777 Fax. 0208 451 1223 Hertfordshire 0800 0921120 Fax. 01992 822793 Birmingham 0121 544 0220 Fax. 0121 544 0440 Nottingham 0115 982 6400 Fax. 0115 982 6020

Cheshire 01260 299658 Fax. 01260 299674 Sheffield 0114 2880111 Fax. 0114 2880333 Manchester 0161 746 8595 Fax. 0161 746 8596 East Yorkshire 01482 222295 Fax. 01482 222213

Leeds 0113 236 1111 Fax. 0113 236 1122 Tyne & Wear 0191 487 7676 Fax. 0191 487 6699 Glasgow 0141 849 7440 Fax. 0141 849 7445 Edinburgh 0131 448 2900 Fax. 0131 448 2626

*Subject to circumstances. Š 2000 Solutions Group (UK) Plc. Reproduction Prohibited. All offers subject to availability and may be changed without prior notice. All prices exclude VAT, CP&I, E&OE.


IRCI-5400

ProductNews

ProductNews

VACI-5300 F1 Fox

VA-5200

CI5100

Receive maximum Satellite coverage with the new Humax range Over the last few years, Humax has established itself as a highly reputable manufacturer in the world of digital satellite reception. Product specifications have consistently met the requirements of both domestic and commercial markets, here and abroad, and its wide range of high performance set-top boxes have helped maintain its leading position within the industry. Following the successful launch of the F1Fox and the IRCI-5400, Humax has now introduced the CI-5100, the VA-5200 and the VA CI-5300 to replace the F1- CI, F1-VA and the F1-VACI, which have now been discontinued. Specifications such as frequency range, symbol rate, FEC and DiSEqC are similar between each receiver.

F1 Fox The F1 Fox is the most basic model in the Humax range. Its small casing and modern design make it an attractive product for DTH viewing of free-to-air channels. It has all the benefits of the higher spec models but does not include any encryption format or common interface slots. Due to its basic functionality, it does not have IF Loop through or a UHF modulator so connection to a TV requires a Scart lead (this is supplied with the unit). The Fox has both versions of DiSEqC, 1.0 for controlling DiSEqC switches and 1.2 for DiSEqC H to H mount. It can store 2000 channels which makes multi-satellite viewing simple. Features can be added to the receiver by downloading new software via the RS232 port on the back of the unit. CI- 5100 The CI5100 is the direct replacement for the F1 CI. This latest receiver has a new

streamlined look, which apart from the F1 Fox, is consistent throughout the whole range. It has 2 common interface slots allowing for CAMS to be added with viewing cards. It is a legal requirement that a subscription is paid to a service provider before viewing cards are used.

of two separate Viacess encrypted services without the need to change the cards. Another benefit of a twin card reader is that the consumer does not miss any card update information when codes change, allowing for uninterrupted, troublefree viewing.

Unlike the Fox, the CI 5100 has an IF loopthrough for connection to another receiver. It also features a UHF modulator which can be tuned between channels 21 to 68 for easy connection to a TV or an existing distribution system.

Again, new software can be added to upgrade the model when it becomes available.

VA- 5200 The VA-5200 from Humax boasts an impressive 4000 channel storage memory. Like the other receivers in this range, it has DiSEqC 1.0 and 1.2 software so when used as a DiSEqC motorised system, the large channel storage memory is essential. This model has embedded Viaccess for the reception of encrypted services, such as the French packages TPS and ABSAT, and incorporates many other service providers which use the encryption. It has a twin card slot enabling the viewing

VACI- 5300 The VACI 5300 is a direct replacement for one of Humax’s most popular models, the FI-VACI. This improved version has more features than its predecessor as well as the new, modern casing making it a more attractive unit all round. Like the VA-5200, the VACI-5300 has built in Viaccess, but with only one card slot. There are two common interface slots allowing for the encrypted services to be used with a suitable viewing card and CAM, such as Seca and Irdeto, covering all consumer requirements. This unit has many user friendly features for simple navigation around the receiver

menus. Important features such as installation and channel organisation are password protected to prevent the alteration of important settings. The onscreen menus are clear, colourful and precise and an EPG is available to present current programme information. Channels can be recalled either in channel order, alphabetical order or by themes. IRCI-5400 Perhaps one of the most advanced models available today, the IRCI-5400 has a built in Irdeto decryption facility. This is one of the most popular systems in the world and used by broadcasters such as the German company DF1 and Italian broadcaster RAI. Apart from having embedded Irdeto, the receiver also has two common interface slots for use with suitable CAMS, in order to gain access to other non-Irdeto encrypted services. Each receiver is pre-programmed with the majority of satellites which can be received from within Europe . The installation menu has the standard features found on most of

the modern day digital satellite receivers such as frequency, polarity, symbol rate, FEC and network search. For installation purposes, satellites and transponders can either be searched manually or by using the “quick search” function which will scan all transponders stored under the selected satellite. Other search modes, such as detailed search will scan and look for channels from 950MHz to 2150MHz. For more difficult channels, it is possible to enter PID’s (Package Identifier) which will select the required channels, although the detailed search may take some time. The receiver can handle both PAL and NTSC transmissions. With a 4000 channel memory, new channels can be added without the need to delete existing ones. Channel organisation is made easy as you can move, delete and rename services by channel name, radio name and by bouquet. The IRIC5400 also has selectable background settings and extra features such a s calendar and a timer.

Spring 2001

Spring 2001 8

The common frequency range covers 950 MHz to 2150MHz and the symbol rate of each model is 2 to 31 Ms/s, allowing for reception of MCPC (Multiple Channels Per Carrier) and SCPC (Single Channel Per Carrier). FEC (Forward Error Correction) is 1/2, 2/3, 3/4, 5/6, 7/8. The receivers alsohave DiSEqC versions 1.0 and 1.2 for

switching controls and motorised DiSEqC H to H mounts.

9


IRCI-5400

ProductNews

ProductNews

VACI-5300 F1 Fox

VA-5200

CI5100

Receive maximum Satellite coverage with the new Humax range Over the last few years, Humax has established itself as a highly reputable manufacturer in the world of digital satellite reception. Product specifications have consistently met the requirements of both domestic and commercial markets, here and abroad, and its wide range of high performance set-top boxes have helped maintain its leading position within the industry. Following the successful launch of the F1Fox and the IRCI-5400, Humax has now introduced the CI-5100, the VA-5200 and the VA CI-5300 to replace the F1- CI, F1-VA and the F1-VACI, which have now been discontinued. Specifications such as frequency range, symbol rate, FEC and DiSEqC are similar between each receiver.

F1 Fox The F1 Fox is the most basic model in the Humax range. Its small casing and modern design make it an attractive product for DTH viewing of free-to-air channels. It has all the benefits of the higher spec models but does not include any encryption format or common interface slots. Due to its basic functionality, it does not have IF Loop through or a UHF modulator so connection to a TV requires a Scart lead (this is supplied with the unit). The Fox has both versions of DiSEqC, 1.0 for controlling DiSEqC switches and 1.2 for DiSEqC H to H mount. It can store 2000 channels which makes multi-satellite viewing simple. Features can be added to the receiver by downloading new software via the RS232 port on the back of the unit. CI- 5100 The CI5100 is the direct replacement for the F1 CI. This latest receiver has a new

streamlined look, which apart from the F1 Fox, is consistent throughout the whole range. It has 2 common interface slots allowing for CAMS to be added with viewing cards. It is a legal requirement that a subscription is paid to a service provider before viewing cards are used.

of two separate Viacess encrypted services without the need to change the cards. Another benefit of a twin card reader is that the consumer does not miss any card update information when codes change, allowing for uninterrupted, troublefree viewing.

Unlike the Fox, the CI 5100 has an IF loopthrough for connection to another receiver. It also features a UHF modulator which can be tuned between channels 21 to 68 for easy connection to a TV or an existing distribution system.

Again, new software can be added to upgrade the model when it becomes available.

VA- 5200 The VA-5200 from Humax boasts an impressive 4000 channel storage memory. Like the other receivers in this range, it has DiSEqC 1.0 and 1.2 software so when used as a DiSEqC motorised system, the large channel storage memory is essential. This model has embedded Viaccess for the reception of encrypted services, such as the French packages TPS and ABSAT, and incorporates many other service providers which use the encryption. It has a twin card slot enabling the viewing

VACI- 5300 The VACI 5300 is a direct replacement for one of Humax’s most popular models, the FI-VACI. This improved version has more features than its predecessor as well as the new, modern casing making it a more attractive unit all round. Like the VA-5200, the VACI-5300 has built in Viaccess, but with only one card slot. There are two common interface slots allowing for the encrypted services to be used with a suitable viewing card and CAM, such as Seca and Irdeto, covering all consumer requirements. This unit has many user friendly features for simple navigation around the receiver

menus. Important features such as installation and channel organisation are password protected to prevent the alteration of important settings. The onscreen menus are clear, colourful and precise and an EPG is available to present current programme information. Channels can be recalled either in channel order, alphabetical order or by themes. IRCI-5400 Perhaps one of the most advanced models available today, the IRCI-5400 has a built in Irdeto decryption facility. This is one of the most popular systems in the world and used by broadcasters such as the German company DF1 and Italian broadcaster RAI. Apart from having embedded Irdeto, the receiver also has two common interface slots for use with suitable CAMS, in order to gain access to other non-Irdeto encrypted services. Each receiver is pre-programmed with the majority of satellites which can be received from within Europe . The installation menu has the standard features found on most of

the modern day digital satellite receivers such as frequency, polarity, symbol rate, FEC and network search. For installation purposes, satellites and transponders can either be searched manually or by using the “quick search” function which will scan all transponders stored under the selected satellite. Other search modes, such as detailed search will scan and look for channels from 950MHz to 2150MHz. For more difficult channels, it is possible to enter PID’s (Package Identifier) which will select the required channels, although the detailed search may take some time. The receiver can handle both PAL and NTSC transmissions. With a 4000 channel memory, new channels can be added without the need to delete existing ones. Channel organisation is made easy as you can move, delete and rename services by channel name, radio name and by bouquet. The IRIC5400 also has selectable background settings and extra features such a s calendar and a timer.

Spring 2001

Spring 2001 8

The common frequency range covers 950 MHz to 2150MHz and the symbol rate of each model is 2 to 31 Ms/s, allowing for reception of MCPC (Multiple Channels Per Carrier) and SCPC (Single Channel Per Carrier). FEC (Forward Error Correction) is 1/2, 2/3, 3/4, 5/6, 7/8. The receivers alsohave DiSEqC versions 1.0 and 1.2 for

switching controls and motorised DiSEqC H to H mounts.

9


ProductNews

Affordable analyser always on target The new and improved EP314 from leading test equipment specialist Unaohm now offers a measurement facility to assess COFDM as well as QPSK. Here we take a closer look at this highly specified spectrum analyser, designed to enable the most accurate installation. With a frequency coverage of 45 to 2150MHz, this highly flexible spectrum analyser has the capacity to measure a whole range of digital and analogue signals, including satellite, radio and television. Unoahm has supported the advent of digital reception by incorporating Digital Channel Power (DCP) and Carrier to Noise Ratio (C/N) into the measurement functions of the EP314. The Bit Error Ratio (BER) can also now be assessed through the COFDM (Coded Orthogonal Frequency Division Multiplexing) module. These three key parameters are essential for the installer to measu r e D T T ( D i g i t a l Ter r e s t r i a l Television) signals successfully.

The 100 programme memory allows you to recall preset channels at the touch of a button, making the EP314 an ideal unit for the installation of complex systems. The memory also has the ability to store frequency, polarity, 22KHz tone, DiSEqC 1.1, audio sub carriers and TV standard.

The EP314 also has an AM, FM and TV sub-carrier analogue demodulation facility which allows installers to monitor audio performance as well as signal strength. This ensures accurate installations are performed in the minimum time.

To compliment the portability of the EP314, the unit is housed in a durable nylon carry case and is supplied with a 6.5Ah rechargeable battery.

The black and white On Screen Display allows frequency and level readings to be accessed in all modes of operation.

For more information contact your local Solutions Group depot or visit: www.unaohm.com.

UNAOHM

Spring 2001

COFDM/QPSK

To ensure accurate digital satellite reception, the on board QPSK module will allow the readout of the channel BER, the post Viterbi BER (pvBER) and the Centre Frequency Offset (CFO).

The additional feature of the Reed Solomon Uncorrected Error Counter (ru) records signal disturbances which can then be corrected by the installer to provide uninterupted pictures.

11


ProductNews

Multi-outlet Plates make installations easier Most houses now have TV, FM and satellite signals entering the house which means that multiple cable runs are often necessary for adequate signal distribution.

by both Global Communications and Labgear. These units make wiring and cable connections easier for the installer and reduce excess cable around the house.

The desire to control the Sky digibox from more than one location in the home is another modern day requirement and the need to run additional cable to a distribution amplifier is often essential.

The Global MSWP/UK/G incorporates a fully screened triplexer with an input range of 47-2150MHz. Frequency of the TV output covers 174-860MHz which unfortunately means that DAB comes out of the TV connection. FM output covers 88108MHz and satellite covers 9502150MHz.

In order to provide a single outlet solution for these multiple applications, multipurpose outlet plates have been launched FM SAT

TV

87.5MHz-230MHZ, allowing for DAB to come through the FM output. The plate is also fully screened to EN50083-2 standard. The Global plate has the benefit of two telephone connections, allowing the connection of a Sky digibox as well as another appliance, such as an ONdigital box or a PC. Both plates are ideal products to be used in conjunction with suitable loftboxes, enabling the distribution of multiple signals.

Other features of the ‘Multi-service wall plate’ from Global include an impressive through loss of only 2dB at UHF and FM and a 3dB loss at IF. T h e M S W P / U K / G a n d L a b g e a r ’s PSW242T and are both compatible with Sky’s TV link eyes, providing a return path from the digibox to the amplifier. Although the Global outlet plate is unscreened, Labgear’s outlet plate includes a screened return path facility. The PSW242T also has a fully screened triplexer with the TV output covering 470862MHz and the Satellite ranging from 950MHz-2400MHz. The FM output covers

Global’s MSWP/UK/G

Labgear’s PSW242T

One cable solution for the motorised dish

Sky expands interactive Services BSkyB has launched a brand new online service offering Sky digital viewers subscription-free sky text and onscreen interactive betting.

The new motorised mount from Stab is a horizon to horizon mount, providing a simple upgrade path without the complications of a traditional motorised setup. The Stab H to H mount works using just one cable, so upgrade from fixed installations to the motorised mount means that the existing LNB cable can be used without having to add extra cable.

Viewers can now access over a thousand news, sport and information pages from Sky.com as well as place a bet on their favourite sporting event via the interactive betting facility. Viewers can bet on Football, Horseracing and Cricket with more sports to be added in the near future.

The Stab has the same flexibility as a traditional H to H mount. It has a rotation angle of ±62º allowing for full coverage of the arc. Obviously line of sight and dish size will determine which satellites can be received.

The digitext service is fully integrated into the Sky platform, enabling viewers to simaltaneously read an information item or place a bet whilst watching a programme.

Spring 2001

It also requires DiSEqC version 1.2 to function which is now found in the majority of digital receivers, including the Humax range (see page 8) but excluding Sky digital receivers . The mount will only drive up to a 1metre dish and must not exceed the weight of 12kg. It has 49 programmable positions of which 26 are pre-set.

6

As long as the system is installed correctly

and the dish is aligned on the south, finding the satellites required will be simple, as the main ones are already stored in the stab mount. To make the setting up of the stab mount easier, a chart is provided in the instruction manual giving the longitude and latitude settings for most of the world. The stab mount will take up to a 3” mast making it suitable for use in exposed locations where strong secure fixing is required.

The on-line services are activated by an integrated modem which is already incorporated into the set-top box and means that no additional equipment is necessary. BSkyB’s Group Director of Sales and Distribution, Jon Florshein, said: “By integrating online services within the broadcast environment, the launch of Sky Text and TV betting brings a new dimension to Sky digitals interactive offering.”


ProductNews

DTT ready MATV amps enhance signal performance Using good quality amplifiers has always been essential when installing IRS and MATV systems. Now these systems must provide DTT signals to every outlet at reliable levels without interference. The quality of Terrestrial TV launch amplifiers is more important than ever, and with this in mind, FR has launched a new range of high quality amplifiers designed for both digital and analogue MATV systems. The range includes a single input preamplifier, a small system amplifier, a five input amplifier for medium sized systems and a five input amplifier for larger systems. All are screened from external sources, such as RF and impulse noise, and the integral power supply has been placed outside the screened case, thus reducing the possibility of mains borne interference which could affect digital and analogue performance. J11A and J22B are new “push-pull” amplifiers, designed specifically for high linearity and low signal distortion covering 47-860MHz. They are both suitable for smaller systems to effectively enhance the performance of digital signals, particularly

XC24R

where weak DTT signals need preamplifying. The J11A has excellent stability and flatness across the whole bandwidth with a 12dB gain and a maximum output of 110dBµV. The J22B has a higher gain of 20dB and a maximum output of 117MHz. However, they are both ideal preamplifiers for a larger launch head-end where the off air levels need lifting to reach the launch level. JB8 and XC24 are multi input, high quality launch amplifiers for medium sized systems. Both have 5 inputs to combine signals from FM, DAB, UHF BIV (Ch2137), UHF BV (Ch38 68), and full UHF

Channels 21-68. The inputs are also filtered to ensure efficient signal amplification. The JB8 has a gain of 24dB and a maximum output of 116 dBµV. The XC24 has a higher gain of 42dB with a maximum output of 119 dBµV. However, both models use separate VHF and UHF amplification for optimum performance. All FR amplifiers are constructed on high quality fibre glass circuit boards with the latest SMD assembly for reliability. They are also housed in a die-cast compartmentalised case for extra stability and screening.

J22B

JB8R

Spring 2001 12

J11A


ProductNews

Three ways to get turned to digital As ONdigital’s subscription base reaches an all time high, what can we expect from the range of high performance digital terrestrial receivers on the market today. Here we take a closer look at Pioneer’s DBR T200-GB, Pace’s DTR735-IM and Nokia’s Mediamaster 9850T.

SMART CARD

It comes as no surprise to the well informed professional that each set-top box must conform to the standard specifications requested by ONdigital. Typical features include TV and VCR Scart sockets, phono outputs, embedded mediaguard conditional access module, for use with a suitable viewing card, and a PCMCIA interface for future digital developments. They are also suitable to receive free to air channels as well as the wide range of encrypted services offered by ONdigital. Although Pioneer, Pace and Nokia incorporate these standard functions into the design of their digiboxes, they each have technical and aesthetic features which make them unique to the manufacturer.

Like the other two set-top boxes, the

The sleek, silver casing of Pioneer’s DBR T200-GB distinguishes it from the others and makes it look the most contemporary unit on the market. Pace is the only manufacturer to design and build set-top boxes for all three digital platforms in the UK. The new ISO 9002 quality approved DTR 735-IM is the latest model to be released by Pace for the digital terrestrial platform.

receiver but it’s the innovative use of the CPU and improved tuner which makes it stand out from the rest. Nokia has embraced the digital age with a wide range of high performance digital equipment and the Mediamaster 9850T is no exception. This unit is the only ONdigital set-top box with a digital audio output, thus maximising the sound quality of the digital transmission. Its remote control is suitable for both right and left handed viewers making it a flexible accessory. Nokia have incorporated a flip down front panel into the design of the 9850T which conceals both the card reader and the control buttons, making it the most smooth line in appearance.

It incorporates an advanced Central Processing Unit for enhanced speed and reliability and has a high sensitivity tuner for improved reception. This model also has its own remote control which has been designed to make the most of the box’s features.

All three models are available to viewers as Free-box and Pre-paid packages but only the Pioneer and Nokia units are available as Pre-paid plus.

The design of Pace’s DTR735-IM centres around the more traditional ‘black box’ ........

For more information contact Solutions Group on 01604 787888.

Spring 2001

Pioneer is a world leader when it comes to audio and home entertainment products, and it has now entered the ONdigital market with the launch of its first Set-top box the DBR T200-GB.

Pioneer receiver has its own remote control. However, in contrast to the DTR735-IM from Pace and Nokia’s Mediamaster 9850T, this adaptable handset can be programmed to control most television sets and VCRs.

13


Feature

Riggers risk heavy fines from TV Licensing It’s not only consumers who risk heavy fines for TV License evasion. Installers and retailers also face prosecution for failing to pass on information about the customers they sell or rent TV equipment to. So are you playing your part in the fight against TV license evasion? According to John Mussell, Head of THE Dealer Unit at TV Licensing, retailers and installers play an important role in the battle against TV License evaders: “The onus may be on the customer to buy a TV license, but businesses large and small also have a legal duty to inform TV Licensing of all sales and rentals.” Under the Wireless Telegraphy Act 1967, retailers have 28 days to present TV Licensing with the names and addresses of customers they sell or rent TV equipment to. Those who fail to do so are breaking the law and risk a maximum fine of £1000. This law applies to the selling or renting of all new and second hand TV receiving equipment and, therefore, not only includes TV’s but also set-top boxes, TV cards and computers with TV cards already installed. It is not necessary for you to notify TV Licensing about sales or rentals you make to other TV dealers for re-sale. It is the responsibility of the company who sells the TV to the end-user to inform TV Licensing of the transaction. However, you do need to notify TV Licensing about staff sales or rentals, and under the Wireless Telegraphy Act 1967 (as amended), you must keep a record of all transaction for a minimum of 12 months.

This law... not only includes TV’s but also set-top boxes, TV cards and computers with TV cards already installed.

Spring 2001 14

Notifications are compared to the database of current UK license holders in order to ascertain whether or not an ‘evader’ is at large. Last year dealers notified the TV Licensing Dealer Administration Centre of over 440,000 TV sales and rentals a month. This contributed towards the capture of more than 1,000 evaders a day. John Mussell explains how important it is for dealers to notify TV Licensing about transactions: “We do visit dealers regularly and we take failure to notify us very seriously as it can obstruct our role, which

is to collect the license fee and tackle evasion.” The process of notification has never been easier and there are three simple ways to inform TV licensing of a sale or rental: 1. E-mail tvlsc@tv-l.co.uk 2. Computer Disk For details call the Dealer Administration Centre Tel: 0117 921 9392 Fax: 0117 921 9422.

inform the TV Licensing Dealer Centre in order for them to delete your number from their records.

3. Manual Form Call 0117 9219312 for a form.

It is also important that you let TV Licensing know if you cease trading or move address by phoning 0117 921 9392/9312.

Alternatively, an ‘electronic notification system’ can be set up by TV Licensing for companies that deal with more than 200 TV transactions a year. Customer information can then be passed on immediately in order for retailers to avoid the risk of prosecution for non-notification.

Many dealers ask if they themselves need a license. The answer to this question is no if you are just testing, repairing or demonstrating TVs to customers on the sales floor. However, if you use a TV for recreational purposes, you must have a license.

“We do visit dealers regularly and we take failure to notify us very seriously.” If you stop selling or renting TV equipment and only carry out repairs, you should

For more information about your role as a dealer in the fight against TV License evasion, visit www.tvlicensing.co.uk or contact: The Manager Dealer Administration Centre TV Licensing Bristol BS98 1TL Tel: 0117 921 9312

Checklist

When you send a sale or rental notification to TV licensing, make sure you include the following details:

Customer details The customer’s title, initials and surname. The full address and postcode of where the equipment is to be installed. The date of sale or rental. Whether the television equipment is colour or mono.

Your details Your company name and address. Your company registration and outlet number (if you sell TV equipment and have not registered with TV Licensing call 0117 9219312)


Global Communications is dedicated to designing effective SMATV distribution equipment for commercial and domestic environments. Here we take a closer look at the Professional “Loftbox”, the integrated home distribution system designed to deliver Satellite, TV, FM, DAB and CCTV signals to more than one location within the home. The Global “Loftbox” is a simple solution for consumers requiring Sky television, Terrestrial TV and Radio signals throughout the home. It is normally positioned in the loft but can be placed in any convenient location around the house. The unit’s input range includes Satellite, DAB (Digital Audio Broadcast), CCTV (from a modulated source), Terrestrial and FM, making it a flexible tool. These signals are combined by the loftbox into one simple down lead which then feeds to a suitable outlet. The main output is clearly labelled as the living room.

The loftbox has an LED power indicator and a built in switch mode power supply, for a continuous reliable performance over many years.

The system can also be easily expanded to more than 8 points by feeding one of the outputs from the loftbox into a global distribution amplifier. The loftbox is fully compatible with other Sky digital accessories such as the TV link eyes.

The unit is an ideal solution for today’s modern housing estates where multiple points are common place. Cables can be distributed with only the need for the required antennas to be installed at the customer’s request.

BEDROOM BEDROOM DINING ROOM KITCHEN

LIVING ROOM

1

DAB ANT

2

3

tvLINK

4

TV OUTPUTS

INPUT 230V AC OUTPUT 12V DC

Professional

LOFTBOX

CE

AC ADAPTOR

SAT ANT

Each of the outputs have a typical gain of 8dB to overcome the majority of long cable runs and to ensure a high quality signal distribution throughout the building.

In order to distribute the signal around the building, a cable can be run back to the loft box. The input is marked as digibox UHF2 which you can then connect to 4 or 8 other points depending on which loftbox you have. This allows reception of normal terrestrial TV, DTT, FM, DAB, CCTV as well as the signal from the Sky Digibox at all outlets.

DAB

SAT

ProductNews

A simple solution for multipoint distribution

CCTV AUX I/P

TV ANT

FM ANT

DC ON

DIGIBOX UHF2 MADE IN ITALY

CCTV CAMERA TV AERIAL FM tvLINK

LIVING ROOM This cable carries all signalsSAT, FM, CCTV, DAB

DIGIBOX UHF2 RETURN PATH

tvLINK

VCR VIDEO

TV

Sky Digibox

HI-FI

FM

tvLINK

Spring 2001

SAT

15


ProductNews

‘Super Gain’ aerial ideal for high and low frequency coverage There is a myth developing in the industry that all digital transmissions in the UK require the use of a wideband aerial. However, many transmitters, even with digital channels added, remain within Group “A” channels 2137. The use of a wideband aerial on these transmitters means reduced performance of the required channels. Normally, the more channels an aerial is designed to cover, the lower the gain on any particular channel when compared to a narrow band aerial.

The MATV installer will also appreciate this flatter response because it means that all channels are more equal before launching into the network.

A balun for accurate cable matching is installed in the junction box, which has a positive and secure screw on lid. An optional cradle and tilt clamp are available.

Built to the same high mechanical and electrical standards as other FR aerials, such as the BLU series, the SG8 Super “A” is robust with its polypropylene mouldings, aluminium wire rod sets and 18mm one piece boom. The mesh grid reflector and low profile directors keep wind loading to a minimum.

SG8 Super “A” comes flat packed for maximum storage and transport efficiency and yet is part pre-assembled for speed of installation.

SG8 SUPER A

15

This factor is also true for a Group “A” aerial with a typical difference in gain of 5dB between channel 21 and channel 37. This means that the lower channels are not received as strongly as the higher channels, thus resulting in poorer performance of the digital TV multiplexes at the bottom of Group “A”.

This will benefit digital and analogue customers alike. An extra couple of dB can make all the difference on digital as well as the old analogue channels when struggling for maximum signal in fringe reception areas.

14 13 12

dBi

FR have considered the UK Group “A” requirements very carefully and tuned the SG8 to perform better at the lower frequencies. This has created a Group “A” aerial with only a 3dB difference in gain between the highest and lowest channels (see performance graph opposite).

For more information call your local Solutions Group depot or visit www.fracarro.co.uk

11 10 9 8 7

490

520

CH 21

550

580

MHz

CH 37

Many digital and analogue transmitters need a Group “A” only aerial. These include: -

Spring 2001 16

Crystal Palace Torosay Brougher Mountain Darvel Eitsha Stockland Hill Bromsgrove Fenton Aberdare Kilvey Hill Lancaster Pendle Forest

(relay of Blackhill) (relay of Dover) (relay of Sutton Coldfield) (relay of Sutton Coldfield) (relay of Wenvoe) (relay of Wenvoe) (relay of Winter Hill) (relay of Winter Hill)


MORE

Northampton 1 Hartburn Close Crow Lane Ind. Park Northampton NN3 9UE

Tel. 01604 787888 Fax. 01604 787999

information

at your fingertips

Wembley Unit 5, Iron Bridge Close Great Central Way, Neasden London NW10 0UF

Tel. 020 8451 1777 Fax. 020 8451 1223

Birmingham 2 Willow Court, Crystal Drive Warley West Midlands B66 1RD

Tel. 0121 544 0220 Fax. 0121 544 0440

Cheshire Bath Vale Works, Bromley Road Congleton Cheshire CW12 2HD

Tel. 01260 299658 Fax. 01260 299674

Edinburgh

8 Dryden Vale Bilston Glen Ind. Est. Loanhead, Edinburgh EH20 9HN

Tel. 0131 448 2900 Fax. 0131 448 2626

Glasgow Unit 5 Greenhill Ind. Est Paisley PA3 1RQ

Tel. 0141 849 7440 Fax. 0141 849 7445

Dorset Unit 28, Factory Road Upton Industrial Estate, Upton Poole, Dorset BH16 5SL

Tel. 01202 624441 Fax. 01202 632453

Manchester Unit 9, Bridgewater Centre, Robson Avenue, Urmston Manchester M41 2TE

Tel. 0161 746 8595 Fax. 0161 746 8596

Solutions Group (UK) Plc can now offer you an exciting new information pack with even more free information!

Woolwich Unit 7 Block 2 Woolwich Dockyard Ind. Est. Church Street, Woolwich London SE18 5PQ

Tel. 020 8316 0123 Fax. 020 8316 0126

This professional, clearly laid out pack features up to the minute information on our latest products, including:

Nottingham Unit 39 Nottingham South & Willford Ind. Est Ruddington Lane Wilford Nottingham NG11 7EP

Tel. 0115 982 6400 Fax. 0115 982 6020

Attractive set of colour product leaflets CD Rom Interactive Catalogue Current Price list Contact information

Hertfordshire 1 Fieldings Road Cheshunt Hertfordshire EN8 9TL

Tel. 0800 0921120 Fax. 01992 641655

Berkshire 13 High Street Sunningdale Berkshire SL5 0NF

All presented in a professional folder.

Tel. 01344 621531 Fax. 01344 624526

For your FREE information pack, cut out the the box below and send it your nearest depot or alternatively give us a call.

Leeds Unit C12, New Pudsey Square Bradford Road Stanningley Leeds LS28 6PX

Tel. 0113 236 1111 Fax. 0113 236 1122

East Yorkshire Unit B3 Citadel Business Park Garrison Road Hull HU9 1TQ

Please send me an information Pack: Company Name:

Contact Name:

Tel. 01482 222295 Fax. 01482 222213

Tyne & Wear 7 Perth Court 11th Avenue North Team Valley Trading Estate Gateshead Tyne & Wear, NE11 0NJ

Tel: Address: Fax:

Tel. 0191 487 7676 Fax. 0191 487 6699

Sheffield Unit 1 Ironbridge Industrial Estate Retford Road Handsworth Sheffield Yorkshire, S13 9LA

Tel. 0114 2880111 Fax. 0114 2880333

Email

solutionsgroup

(UK)Plc

TM


ProductNews

Digital ready distribution by Triax Danish manufacturer Triax has just introduced a brand new range of highly efficient products designed specifically for today’s digital age. To compliment its existing range of masthead distribution amplifiers, a new 4 way amp has been introduced which is designed to cover the frequency range of 470-862MHz. It has a gain of 15dB whilst maintaining a low noise factor of only 2.0dB, thus keeping unwanted noise to a minimum. It requires 12-24DC/30mA to operate correctly and this power can be supplied to the unit through any one of the four outputs making it one of the most flexible mastheads on the market.

The 16 Way Multi-tap is also new to the Triax range. It is ideal for most MATV installations where a ‘star wired’ system is in place (all cables running back to one location). Each of the tap’s 16 outputs has a different loss value ranging from 13dB to 25.5dB, covering a frequency range of 5-1000MHz. Other features include a low insertion loss, high return loss and good isolation between ports. The unit is housed in a high quality, zinc die-cast case and all terminals are 75ohm F connectors. Triax has also introduced two new outlet plates which are both fully screened.

UHF and <3.0dB for radio. The insertion loss at Sat IF is <3.0dB. Both outlets have UK style front face plates and allow multi-directional cable entry.

TD88 Triax has enhanced its range of high performance antennas with the relaunch of the improved TD88 dish. The sturdy antenna is made of galvanised steel and has been designed to maximise the reception of signals in the frequency range of 10.700-12.750GHz. It also has a high gain of 38.8dBi at 11.7GHz.

The amp is housed in a fully screened, traditional blue case with a black strap for secure fixing to the mast. It is also fitted with F connectors to ensure solid connections to all cables.

The diplexed version supports TV and Radio signals with DAB coming out of the radio port. Insertion loss at UHF is <1.5dB and <2.5dB for radio.

The dish is suitable for use with Sky digital systems as well as motorised, dual feed and other types of domestic and commercial installations.

The MFA322 is quality assured and meets all the requirements of EN50083-3 quality Grade 2.

The triplexed outlet plate supports TV, radio and satellite. It has a greater insertion loss than the diplexed plate with <2.5dB at

Although the TD88 is one of the easiest dishes on the market to assemble, its reliability is certainly not compromised.

Swedish Satellite Solutions 1dB wideband dual digital LNB with F connectors Spring 2001 20

High stability +/-2MHz. Excellent durability For more information call: Solutions Group HQ Tel: 01604 787888 Fax: 01604 787999


This months recommended ‘Dish of the Day’ is the 80cm solid pole mount dish from Televes. This new offset dish is dark grey in colour and made of steel. The dish has been tuned to operate between 10.7 to 12.75 GHz with a gain of 39dBi and a beam width of 2.2 (-3dB). It weighs 3.5K and has a maximum windload of 130km an hour.

It was launched from European space port in Kourou, French Guyana on board the Ariane 5 rocket and features up to 16 KUband transponders in the frequency range of 10.70 - 10.95 GHz. It has a life expectancy of 12 years and is positioned alongside Astra 2A and Astra 2B. Astra are now able to activate up to 56 transponders covering a frequency range of 10.70-10.95 and 11.70-12.50GHz. Astra 2C is the next satellite scheduled for launch in June 2001 and will provide another 32 KU band transponders.

Win TV

DVB-s

This high performance digital satellite reception card allows you to view Digital Satellite Television, listen to Digital Radio and access Satellite Internet via your PC. Digital television transmissions can be recorded, making this PC card one of the most advanced on the market today! NOW available is a CI Slot for your PC to facilitate the use of CAMs and cards for Pay TV Services.

Spring 2001

For Further details contact Solutions Group’s Product Specialist, Tony Ritson: Tel: 07720 467305 e-mail: tony.ritson@solutionsgroup-plc.com

The dish has a unique, sturdy construction for reliable service. It also has a single V bolt for secure fixing to the mast.

Astra 2D is the latest satellite to be launched into orbit at 28.2º east.

SatelliteNews

Dish of the Day

Astra 2D has arrived

21


News

www.tv-installers.com UPDATE TV-installers.com, one of the first internet directories to list TV and Satellite installers across the UK, has received a fantastic response according to site co-ordinator Nicola Dyer.

“Even if you don’t have access to the internet yourself, you can still apply to be listed by simply filling in a form. Alternatively you can actually apply on-line at www.tvinstallers.com.”

“The number of businesses applying to be included in the directory is increasing on a daily basis. Now that more and more people have access to the internet, it has become one of the most effective ways to promote your company.

One of the first installers to be listed in the directory said: “TV-installers.com is a new and exciting way for us to inform consumers where we are geographically and what services we provide. The design of the website is extremely eyecatching, but more importantly it’s user friendly.”

“The comprehensive site dedicates a whole web page to each business which gives companies the opportunity to use the space according to their requirements.

Using the latest web technology, the site can also provide links to your own website and e-mail address, enabling consumers to contact you at the click of a button. Midlands Staffordshire

www.tv-installers.com incorporates a point and click interface for consumers to easily locate your business.

Shrewsbury

Top manufacturer launches new website Allicraft Manufacturing, one of the UK’s fastest growing manufacturers of installation bracketry and antenna equipment, has just launched a brand new website. The site, which can be found at w w w. a l l i c r a f t . c o . u k , o ff e r s a comprehensive guide to Allicraft’s wide product range along with colour images and company contact information. The website also has the facility to link visitors directly to the supplier’s e-mail address as well as other useful sites including www.solutionsgroup-plc.com. Production Manager, Stuart Matthews, said: “We want people to be able to access our range of high quality products at the touch of a button. The site has been specifically designed to allow visitors to move easily between pages with no technical complications.

Leicestershire West Midlands Hereford & Worcester Oxfordshire

“We offer high quality welding and superb finishing at extremely low prices which visitors to the site will discover.”

Buckinghamshire Bedfordshire Hertfordshire Warwickshire

Northamptonshire

Solutions Group trade counters around the UK stock the full range of masts, bracketry and antennas produced by Allicraft. For more details call Solutions Group HQ on 01604 787888.

Essential Accessories In order to stay ahead of the rest, every professional installer should have a supply of accessories to give consumers the opportunity to access the world of Sky Digital Television instantly. The range of accessories are compatible with all BSkyB digiboxes and includes the interactive Keypad from Open..., the functional remote control and the TV Link eyes from Global.

Spring 2001 22

Distributed by Solutions Group (UK) Plc. Contact Tel: 01604 787888 Fax: 01604 787999


skyline digital

TM

DIGITAL analogue

TRUE BALUN PERFORMANCE

Labgear Skyline Digital Aerial range is the leading force in high performance reception antennas. Available in both 15 and 18 element, with a choice of group A or wideband, the Skyline is the market leader in reception quality and value for money.

For further details, contact your nearest trade outlet:

Northampton [HQ] 01604 787888 Fax. 01604 787999 Dorset 01202 624441 Fax. 01202 632453 Berkshire 01344 621531 Fax. 01344 624526 Woolwich 0208 316 0123 Fax. 0208 316 0126

Wembley 0208 451 1777 Fax. 0208 451 1223 Hertfordshire 0800 0921120 Fax. 01992 822793 Birmingham 0121 544 0220 Fax. 0121 544 0440 Nottingham 0115 982 6400 Fax. 0115 982 6020

Cheshire 01260 299658 Fax. 01260 299674 Sheffield 0114 2880111 Fax. 0114 2880333 Manchester 0161 746 8595 Fax. 0161 746 8596 East Yorkshire 01482 222295 Fax. 01482 222213

Leeds 0113 236 1111 Fax. 0113 236 1122 Tyne & Wear 0191 487 7676 Fax. 0191 487 6699 Glasgow 0141 849 7440 Fax. 0141 849 7445 Edinburgh 0131 448 2900 Fax. 0131 448 2626

Š 2001 Solutions Group (UK) Plc. Reproduction Prohibited. All offers subject to availability and may be changed without prior notice. All prices exclude VAT, CP&I, E&OE.


TechnicalSolutions

techNICAL SOLUTIONS

If you have an installation problem or just need advice on product suitability then look no further than our TECHNICAL SOLUTIONS page! Our Technical Support Team have the experience and knowledge to provide you with a total solution for all your technical requirements. If you have a technical problem you want solving contact our Technical Team at Tech Talk, Solutions Group, 1 Hartburn Close, Crow Lane Industrial Park, Northampton, NN3 9UE or e-mail them at: technical@solutionsgroup-plc.com

Q I have installed a Grundig GDS310/2 digibox and have connected it to the TV using the SVHS socket. Although I have a picture, I have no sound. Can you please explain why? L Langford, Birmingham

chrominance (colour) and luminance (brightness) to provide optimum picture quality. However, it does not carry sound, so in order to get an audio output, the box should be connected by phono to the TV or HIFI. DO NOT REMOVE COVERS HAZARD - LIVE PARTS

A The SVHS is a new feature of the latest Grundig Set-top box. In contrast to the RF and Scart outputs, the SVHS separates the

Left

Right

TV SCART

Digital Interface 5V DC 600mA max 3V3 DC 1.2A max

I have installed a Sky digibox and connected it to the TV by a Scart lead, but when the box is on, I can not change the channels on the TV. Can you tell me what I am doing wrong? D Armstrong, Dartford

A

After installation, you should turn off the Scart control. This can be deactivated by accessing the ‘Services’ on the remote control, then the ‘System Setup’ followed by ‘Picture Settings’. Once the Scart control has been turned off, press the AV button on the TV remote control and you will have full control of the Sky digital service.

A

Q I have installed a multi-input broadband amp in a strong UHF area. The problem is I’m getting UHF bleeding through the band III DAB input into the main UHF input. How can I cure this? Simon Daniels, Lewisham

Q

A

My cutomer already has a digital satellite receiver and would like to receive Hotbird as well as Astra on a dual feed system. It is not possible to run another cable and he only has one LNB input, so how can I switch between two LNB’s? K Lewis, Warrington

You can use a V H F / U H F diplexer in reverse and terminate the UHF port. A l t e r n a t i v e l y, Fracarro’s multiinput broadband amplifiers can be used because careful filtering has been made to the band III input (see page 12). Another option is to use a KF DAB module which is part of the Fracarro’s K series.

Spring 2001

Q My customer already has the Labgear MRX distribution system installed in her home so she can control her VCR from

Dish Input 13/18V DC 350mA max

WARNING! Disconnect receiver from the mains supply and telephone line before removing cover. Accurately follow the module installation instructions.

Aerial In

RS - 232

I have just installed two Global SMATV racks in a hotel which has its own channel as well as terrestrial television, but I’m experiencing cross modulation with the channels. How can I solve this problem? Michael Cage, Durham

A

Telephone Line

RF Out - 2 9V DC 50mA max

S - Video

Q

A DiSEqC 2x1 switch should be added and located behind the dish. The digital receiver will generate the DiSEqC command which is then sent to the switch to select the required LNB and provide transmissions from the chosen satellite.

A This is simple to do using the new Labgear MSR120 and MSR140 amps. RF Out - 1

Q

The system requires a channelised filter solution s u c h a s Fracarro’s K Series. By incorporating the desired c h a n n e l modules, only the necessary signals will be allowed to pass through, thus eliminating cross modulation.

24

SVHS Socket

VCR SCART

the bedroom. I have just added Sky digital to the system and she would like to be able to change channels from the bedroom but I do not want to replace the MRX system. What can I do? J Howe, Inverness

BEAB Approved

BOOSTER

tv2

tv1

in

From the existing MRX 120 (base unit), plug the output into the input of the required MSR amplifier. You should use the Labgear MRX110 extra room kits in this type of system because the Sky TV link eyes are not compatible. For more information about how the Labgear MSR amp can be used in a Sky digital distribution system see page 4.

Q Which inputs on the Philips Multiswitch correspond to the quattro LNB? P Scott, Hull

A The four inputs of the multiswicth correspond in the following way:

Inputs

Polarity

Band

13VO/22KHz

V

Low Band

18VO/22KHz

H

Low Band

13V 22KHz

V

High Band

18V 22KHz

H

High Band

Q How can I keep up with the latest DTT changes? Bill Yates, Stoke-on- Trent

A There are a number of websites you can visit to find out the latest Digital Terrestrial Television updates. These include The Digital Television Group at www.dtg.org.uk, BBC at www.bbc.co.uk/digital and TVTAP at www.tvtap.mcmail.com. Alternatively you can contact these organisations by phone or look on Teletext Page 698 on BBC 2.

U.S. patent Nos 4,631,603 and 4,819,098 license pay per vie

230V ~ 50Hz

MADE IN U.K.


When our customers require a wide range of bracketry to suit all conditions and applications, experience has taught us to build strong, cost effective products. Our hand-built, quality controlled production lines means that each product never fails to meet the high standards we are renowned for. Using the best materials with secure welding means that the good performance is guaranteed time and time again! Also available from Allicraft:

Wide range of Masts & Accessories Contract TV and FM Aerials Custom build service Plus much more! For more information, contact your nearest depot: Northampton [HQ] 01604 787888 Fax. 01604 787999 Dorset 01202 624441 Fax. 01202 632453 Berkshire 01344 621531 Fax. 01344 624526 Woolwich 0208 316 0123 Fax. 0208 316 0126

Wembley 0208 451 1777 Fax. 0208 451 1223 Hertfordshire 0800 0921120 Fax. 01992 822793 Birmingham 0121 544 0220 Fax. 0121 544 0440 Nottingham 0115 982 6400 Fax. 0115 982 6020

Cheshire 01260 299658 Fax. 01260 299674 Sheffield 0114 2880111 Fax. 0114 2880333 Manchester 0161 746 8595 Fax. 0161 746 8596 East Yorkshire 01482 222295 Fax. 01482 222213

Leeds 0113 236 1111 Fax. 0113 236 1122 Tyne & Wear 0191 487 7676 Fax. 0191 487 6699 Glasgow 0141 849 7440 Fax. 0141 849 7445 Edinburgh 0131 448 2900 Fax. 0131 448 2626

Š 2001 Solutions Group (UK) Plc. Reproduction Prohibited. All offers subject to availability and may be changed without prior notice. All prices exclude VAT, CP&I, E&OE.

Archive Rigger's Digest Issue2 March 2001  

This an archived copy of a previous edition of Rigger's Digest. Prices quoted will no longer be valid and some products featured or adverti...

Archive Rigger's Digest Issue2 March 2001  

This an archived copy of a previous edition of Rigger's Digest. Prices quoted will no longer be valid and some products featured or adverti...

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