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Single-chip TV receiver supports analog, digital

Fresco Microchip's FM 1151, described as the first single-chip global receiver for the hybrid TV market.

SAN FRANCISCO—With various regions at different stages of transition from analog to digital television broadcast, Fresco Microchip Inc. this week is rolling out a single-chip solution that supports universal analog audio and video demodulation as well as digital intermediate frequency (IF) processing for global terrestrial and cable television markets.

The FM1151 universal analog demodulator and digital IF processor, the latest addition to Fresco's FM1100 product family, offers a lower system cost and better performance, according to Fresco (Toronto).

Fresco said Panasonic Electronic Devices (PED) has selected the FM1151 for its latest hybrid tuners. PED's next-generation VP35HR tuner family is designed for terrestrial and cable broadcasts across Europe, Asia and Latin America, according to Fresco.

According to Melissa Chee, Fresco's director of marketing, the FM1151 enables TV manufacturers to deal with fewer suppliers, since it integrates SAW filter functionality, eliminating the need for external components.

“One of the key things we've been hearing back from our customers, with the consumer electronics industry going through consolidation, there is a desire to reduce the number of suppliers,” Chee said.

Melissa Chee
Fresco Microchip

While the U.S. completed the transition from analog to digital over-the-air television broadcasting earlier this year, many emerging countries have not made the change, Chee said. Some have not even set a date for such a transition, she added. This complicates life for television manufacturers, who need to create different regional SKUs to support analog and digital markets, she said.

Because it is fully compatible with standard and non-standard audio and video analog and digital broadcasts, the FM1151 can help eliminate the need for regional SKUs of televisions, Chee said.

“Digital is definitely starting to take off, but in many regions in the world it's occurring at different paces,” Chee said. “Really, the opportunity is in hybrid, allowing TVs to support multiple regions.”

According to Paul Gray, director of TV electronics research for market research firm DisplaySearch, with developed markets essentially saturated, the TV market is now being driving by emerging markets.

“All major set makers are seeking ways to reduce their development costs and time to market, and universal systems for global TV reception are a key way to reduce product diversity and improve R&D efficiency,” Gray said.

According to Fresco, FM1151 integrates the company's agileSP architecture and features video clarity enhancements such as smearing and ringing reduction. The chip accepts the IF output directly from CAN and silicon tuners and demodulates worldwide legacy audio/video (WAVe) to generate analog CVBS video with SIF or MONO audio, Fresco said.

The digital IF output is compatible with a broad range of standard downstream digital demodulators, Fresco said.

According to Fresco, the FM1151 supports standards including NTSC, PAL, SECAM, DVB-T/T2, ATSC, ISDB-T, DTMB and DVB-C/ITU J.83.

The FM1151 is in production now and samples are available to qualified customers, Fresco said.

In recent weeks, Fresco has disclosed a number of design wins, including an announcement last month that tuner manufacturer NuTune is shipping hybrid and analog tuner module products using two chips from Fresco's FM1100 family. Fresco also said last month that LG Innotek chose its universal analog demodulator and digital IF processor IC to power the what it called the industry's first global hybrid tuner modules.

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