BEAVERTON, Ore., April 5, 2010 – Tektronix, Inc., the market leader in broadcast video test, monitoring and analysis solutions,today announced it has further enhanced its family of waveform monitors and rasterizers with critical audio loudness capability. Building upon its current loudness measurement capability, Tektronix now offersWFM6000/7000 and WVR6000/7000 Series customers new firmware and software upgrades that adhere to the ITU-R BS.1770-1/1771 specifications. The upgrades include capabilities such as an Audio Loudness Meter, an Audio Loudness Session Display and the industry’s first audio loudnessmonitoring of Dolby Digital Plus audio, among others. The new full offering of audio loudness capabilities from Tektronix can be seen at the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) 2010 Conference, April 12-15, in booth N2522.
The transition from analog to digital has enabled improved audio and video performance that allows the broadcasters and program providers to send a wider dynamic range of audio signals to the home than what was possible in the past. Today’s commercial programming is taking advantage of this wider dynamic range to grab the attention of viewers and results in increased audio loudness between programs and interstitial material. The objection by television viewers to this wide variation in audio loudness has led governments around the world to consider legislations or pass laws to regulate this practice.
As a result, loudness has become a serious issue for broadcasters and program producers and they have been working to address the problem. In theUnited States, an ATSC industry expert group has created a “recommended practice” (ATSC A/85), using the ITU-R BS.1770-1/1771 specifications as basis for measurement methods and guidelines on how to make loudness measurements. In Europe, P/LOUD Group of EBU has been working towards a new EBU recommendation on audio loudness. There will be EBU Practical Guidelines which will cover similar grounds as the ATSC A/85 Recommended Practice. Various testing on audio loudness have also been underway in Japan and China to determine local audio loudness recommended practices. Tektronix is providing the new tools required to measure the audio loudness following these specifications and guidelines and provides an approach that can be easily understood by program providers, broadcasters and operators.
“As the leader in video test, it’s imperative that we stay on the cutting edge to address the challenges our customers face and the current audio loudness debate is no different,” said Ian Valentine, Director, Baseband Video Products, Tektronix, Inc. “With the addition of our new audio loudness capabilities to the WFM/WVR 6000/7000 Series products we are delivering the advanced, high-performance tools our customers need to effectively and efficiently adhere to the new specifications and recommended practices.”
Audio Loudness Support for Broadcasters, Network Operators, Content Providers and IPTV Service Providers
Operators and engineers in broadcast and multi-channel video program distribution (MVPD) facilities need to quickly and easily detect and isolate multi-channel audio problems which can cause hefty government penalties or subscriber loss. Content providers need to effectively verify multi-channel audio content in order to reduce potential errors during editing and the format conversion process and ensure the content they provide is in compliance with the audio loudness target level set by the broadcasters which can prevent costly rework. To address each group’s unique challenges, Tektronix added the Audio Loudness Meter and the Audio Loudness Session Display (including audio loudness trend chart with adjustable display window) which, when viewed in conjunction with the previously available Audio Level Meters and Audio Status displays, provides the most comprehensive audio monitoring tools available in the market. Also available is the new Dolby Digital Plus audio decode and monitoring (including audio loudness monitoring) with the Tektronix signature Metadata display which enables IPTV service providers to improve their viewers’ quality of experience by offering home theater quality audio using the Dolby Digital Plus technology.
About Tektronix Waveform Monitors
Tektronix waveform monitors provide the superior video monitoring and analysis capabilities required in content creation, content delivery, research and development, and manufacturing applications. These products help video content producers verify content quality and make precision content adjustments. In video delivery systems, they help operations staff verify content quality and system reliability, and help engineering staffs qualify, install, and maintain video systems. Design and manufacturing engineers developing new video equipment use these products for design troubleshooting, functional verification, and manufacturing test.
Tektronix also offers the most complete range of audio functionality with the widest range of audio displays available for everything from analog audio to Dolby E digital audio including VANC Dolby metadata monitoring as per SMPTE2020, Dolby E Guardband monitoring, and Audio Loudness monitoring as per ITU-R BS.1770-1/1771.
The new firmware and software upgrades will be shown at NAB 2010 and be available in June 2010. Go to www.tektronix.com.
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For more than sixty years, engineers have turned to Tektronix for test, measurement and monitoring solutions to solve design challenges, improve productivity and dramatically reduce time to market. Tektronix is a leading supplier of test instrumentation for engineers focused on electronic design, manufacturing, and advanced technology development. Headquartered in Beaverton, Oregon, Tektronix serves customers worldwide and offers award-winning service and support. Stay on the leading edge atwww.tektronix.com.
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