IRDs

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kc9hta
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IRDs

Post by kc9hta » Tue Sep 02, 2014 7:59 am

How many of you guys are using these IRDs: http://www.upcom.com/uc-irdplus.php

I've never used them before expect for return feeds in our satellite trucks.

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NECRAT
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Re: IRDs

Post by NECRAT » Tue Sep 02, 2014 4:25 pm

Same here. We only have them in one of our trucks.

Our in house stuff is all Tandberg.
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w9wi
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Re: IRDs

Post by w9wi » Tue Sep 02, 2014 5:30 pm

We have two. One is a backup for Heartland (ex-TNN) and seems to run forever. The other one we use for general occasional feeds. The web interface seems to crash occasionally. Otherwise, it receives just fine.
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PID_Stop
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Re: IRDs

Post by PID_Stop » Thu Sep 04, 2014 11:46 am

I've installed something like 27 of them in the past year, mainly using ASI or IP inputs (though we have several others that are doing satellite downlinks, too). There are tradeoffs, and this is our experience:

:D They are dirt cheap, especially compared to Ericsson.
:D They are easy to configure through a web browser, not too bad from the front panel.
:? The manual could be better. There are several undocumented settings related to IP streaming.
:| The IRD doesn't have a frame sync. This doesn't matter in many applications, so it might not be a deal breaker.
:D It handles both MPEG-2 and MPEG-4 video.
:D It decodes both MPEG and AC-3 audio.
:D The audio section handles two stereo pairs, which can be embedded in the video.
:( We have a problem with embedded audio "ticking" occasionally. They are working on a firmware fix right now.
:D There are both balanced and unbalanced analog outputs, and balanced AES digital outputs.
:D The receiver comes with all necessary cables, including audio breakouts.
:) It can pass Dolby E to an external decoder, if you need it.
:( Closed captions are a bit buggy, but they are working on a firmware fix right now.
:D The SDI outputs are multiformat, and you can set the decoder to either output the video in its original encoded format, or to force it to a particular format.
:) It has an HDMI output.
:D Even if your SDI output is HD, the unit still gives you a standard definition analog output that's useful for feeding monitors.
:D The unit has two ASI inputs and two ASI outputs, and you have lots of options for how they are routed internally.
:D The unit can receive video over an IP stream, complete with different levels of SMPTE 2022 forward error correction.
:D Surprisingly, you can use it to output an IP stream. For example, you can downlink a satellite feed with one Upcom and stream the feed over IP to another Upcom.
:D We successfully pair many of the Upcoms with ImmediaTV EN460 encoders; Upcom and Immedia historically work together to resolve issues.
:D We also use the Upcoms as over-the-air decoders, feeding them ASI from ATSC demods. Very handy for our Centralcasting model.
:D The front panel display identifies what the device is doing, and its management IP address. Very handy if you have a rack full of them.
:D Their customer service has been good to me, and is pretty responsive. Of course, it probably helps that I have several dozen of the things!
:D They come with rack mounting hardware that is sufficient for a fixed installation. The unit isn't as deep or as heavy our Ericssons, so we haven't worried about rear support.
:? These units are convection cooled -- there are no fans to crap out or make noise. But this also means you need to leave space above them to let heat out.

Honestly, these were not my first choice when we started buying them. But every other contender that had all the features we needed cost more than twice the price of the Upcom, and over time they have won me over. There are some annoying flaws -- glitches in the embedded audio, and occasional bugs with closed captions -- but they are working to resolve them right now. I'm still buying them... in fact, just ordered another this morning.

There are other companies that resell these receivers after gluing their own sticker to the front, but I buy them directly from Daniel Marin at Upcom -- daniel@upcom.com.

-- Jeff

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Re: IRDs

Post by w9wi » Fri Sep 05, 2014 5:24 am

PID_Stop wrote:I've installed something like 27 of them in the past year, mainly using ASI or IP inputs (though we have several others that are doing satellite downlinks, too). There are tradeoffs, and this is our experience:

:( We have a problem with embedded audio "ticking" occasionally. They are working on a firmware fix right now.
:( Closed captions are a bit buggy, but they are working on a firmware fix right now.
I swear we had the ticking issue & they fixed it. I *know* we had caption issues & they've been fixed.

It may have something to do with:
There are other companies that resell these receivers after gluing their own sticker to the front, but I buy them directly from Daniel Marin at Upcom -- daniel@upcom.com.
as the one we had the issues with was a Telairity. To be honest I don't recall having problems with the Upcom-branded units.
:D The SDI outputs are multiformat, and you can set the decoder to either output the video in its original encoded format, or to force it to a particular format.
:) It has an HDMI output.
:D Even if your SDI output is HD, the unit still gives you a standard definition analog output that's useful for feeding monitors.
These three have been REALLY nice to have.
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Doug Smith W9WI
Pleasant View, TN EM66

rftranstv
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Re: IRDs

Post by rftranstv » Thu Oct 02, 2014 7:24 am

I just got one of these too, from your guys experience is this enough clearance above it for it to be properly cooled?
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rftranstv
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Re: IRDs

Post by rftranstv » Thu Oct 02, 2014 7:25 am

i should add im kinda thinking not but i have no experience with this IRD so

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Re: IRDs

Post by PID_Stop » Thu Oct 02, 2014 8:09 am

I generally provide one rack unit of empty space between them, but that's because there's no clean way to do less.

Image

They use fairly little power and don't run terribly hot, so I would expect that you should be okay. They tend to draw air in from the sides and exhaust it out the top by convection, so you definitely don't want anything directly on top of the unit blocking the vent holes.

-- Jeff

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Re: IRDs

Post by rftranstv » Thu Oct 02, 2014 8:13 am

excellent thank you if you can get away with that, i will be fine.Thought better be safe than sorry and ask. Ive seen some equipment sit in the sun and run like a champ. I have also seen things crap out after less than 8 hours when the a/c dies overnight.

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Re: IRDs

Post by PID_Stop » Thu Oct 02, 2014 3:32 pm

No problem. I hear you about some equipment... we had an integrator build up a rack of about 15 DPS-470s years ago, with no space at all between them. I had to rebuild the whole rack about three months later when they started failing one by one. Not one of my happier moments.

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Re: IRDs

Post by NECRAT » Fri Oct 03, 2014 4:15 pm

PID_Stop wrote:No problem. I hear you about some equipment... we had an integrator build up a rack of about 15 DPS-470s years ago, with no space at all between them. I had to rebuild the whole rack about three months later when they started failing one by one. Not one of my happier moments.
Leitch spec'ed the DPS-47x's and 575's (later Harris) to be no more than 3 stacked with one VENTED rack spacer both above and below. The DPS's where famous for having that little high speed cooling fan on the side's motor bearings go south, and start to scream like a MF'er. DPS/Leitch knew this too, as the cost for the replacement fan from Leitch was the same as from Newark (which is UNHEARD of in this biz.). We had 38 of them in Springfield, and I remember buying a dozen fans (and using ALL of them.)

The other fun thing with the 475's was when the "control knob" on the front would go south. I replaced a couple of those too. Not fun, as it is a bear to get to that PCB to unsolder the tiny pot!

I seem to recall we had a P/S go in one of them one night, taking CBS off the air during the nightly news-cast, until the op switched to the backup. NTQ-123 was the supply number. I remember that without looking it up! We had a couple of those go too, and usually in the units where the fans had previously failed.
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