Kathrein/Schomandl Introduces an MSK-200 Signal Analyzer with More HD Test Capability

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Schomandl, a subsidiary of German RF equipment manufacturer Kathrein Group, adds numerous functions to its popular signal analyzer to meet the industry's expanded need for quality testing of mushrooming high-definition TV market.

In an impressive display of responsive engineering, the Kathrein MSK-200 DTV test system has been seriously upgraded to meet the U.S. broadcast industry's need for increasingly sophisticated analysis of high definition TV components.

LBA Technology is the western hemisphere's exclusive distributor of the MSK-200 and other products by The Kathrein Group. The Schomandl division of the German high-tech RF manufacturing company has developed and produced high-frequency measuring instruments for 60 years.

None of the company's instruments has been more instantly acclaimed than the versatile and cost-effective MSK-200 signal analyzer. It is a compact, portable, remote-useable bench-top instrument that can analyze, measure and validate the protocol of terrestrial, cable and satellite analog and digital 50/75ohm RF systems.

The MSK-200 is on display in LBA booth SU3327 at the National Association of Broadcasters 2010 Show in Las Vegas, April 10-15.

When LBA introduced it in the Americas in 2009, the test device was touted as six major pieces of test equipment in one. The original full spectrum analyzer also parsed color for all DVB standards, monitored MPEG and analog TV streams, analyzed MER-BER in real time, simultaneously tested spectrum and picture transport streams and was a memory oscilloscope.

Schomandl engineers now have enhanced those features and added several more to meet swiftly multiplying market needs. In response to customer appeals, the new generation MSK-200:

·    Analyzes the new DTV ATSC voluntary signal standard and measures and analyzes 8VSB sideband modulation in real time. Consequently, broadcasters and cable operators can diagnose and repair issues in multi-path transmission. Engineers can resolve streaming and control issues, decode video images and demodulate audio including Dolby AC-3.

·    Supports MPEG-2 streams as before, but now supports MPEG-4 as well. MPEG-4 is key to compressing different formats (audio/video/speech) and plays a large role in new HD technologies, including Blu-ray. The new MSK-200 can decode and view video and audio for picture and audio quality analysis.

·    Allows Dolby AC-3 audio demodulation of new digital formats while an operator is listening to and viewing the image. Thus, the MSK-200 becomes a major aid in real-time transmission quality control. The AC-3 audio format is prominent on HD TV and MPEG-4.

·    Permits viewing and analysis of transport streams using SMPTE-310 for HD video. It can display video and decode audio to measure and glean transport information from HD streams and signals.
·    Lets cable engineers measure ingress from headend to subscriber through automatic CATV loop testing.

·    Introduces DVB-S2 satellite standard monitoring of high definition signals. DVB-S2 performs about 30 percent better than the previous DVB-S standard and, when compression is added, DVB-S2 can deliver MPEG-4 services. The new MSK-200 analyzes and monitors these streams in real time.

·    Enhances a user's ability to customize a channel plan through an automatic channel-scanning feature. Users can program modulation symbol rates, frequencies, associated channels, satellites and transponders, as well as download and select multiple channel programs.
·    Automatically displays signal quality measurements to show MER, BER, pre- and post-Viterbi and signal-to-noise levels. Thus, users can monitor essential quality levels while measuring individual broadcast values.

The latest generation MSK 200 remains operator-friendly despite a seemingly exponential increase in function. Operation is intuitive and the monitoring of data streams still is comfortable to the eyes thanks to a 10.4-inch LCD color display with bright backlighting. And it is all integrated into one small, portable case.

More information is available on this major upgrade of the MSK-200 by contacting the LBA Helpline or any of LBA's authorized distributors of the instrument.

About LBA Technology, Inc.

LBA Technology is a leading manufacturer and integrator of radio frequency systems, components and test equipment for broadcast, industrial and government users worldwide. With Lawrence Behr Associates, Inc., the company is a unit of the LBA Group, Inc., which has over 40 years experience in providing support for infrastructure assets of the wireless telecommunications industry. The companies are based in Greenville, NC.

Press contact:
Dick Hansson, Marketing Director
LBA Group, Inc.
252-757-0279

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