test&measurementZONE Products for the week of July 30, 2012
Leader Instruments Says…
PHABRIX Rx2000: Dual-Screen Broadcast Test and Measurement System 2U Rack System With Equipped Modules Has Front Panel Tilt Mechanism
Leader Instruments Corporation has chosen SET 2012 (Broadcast & Cable International Technology Fair, São Paulo, 21-23 August) for the launch of the new PHABRIX Rx2000 modular dual-screen test and measurement system into the Americas.
“The Rx2000 is a rack-mount test generator and analyser employing the same easy-to-use graphic control interface as PHABRIX’ established range of portable test instruments,” comments George Gonos, President of Leader Instruments Corporation. “It is the flagship of a range which also includes the Rx1000 full-width 1U and Rx500 half-width 1U rasterisers. The Rx2000 is 2U high and occupies just six inches from front back. It has a trapezoid side profile allowing the front panel to be tilted upwards or downwards within the rack bay. This feature provides optimal viewing angle at various eye levels and will be particularly appreciated wherever space is at a premium, including outside broadcast and mobile production vehicles, in post-production and in technical support areas. The Rx2000 also provides instrumentation via a 1920 x 1080 HDMI/SDI output, allowing a multiview of scalable instruments to be displayed on inexpensive HDMI monitors or routed through broadcast infrastructures via SDI."
The Rx2000 (by Phabrix, based in Thatcham, Berkshire, UK) is a 2RU rack system that is the mother for up to four quarter-width modules that can be loaded into the rear. By itself the system has no functionality – one or more modules are required. A unique attribute of the system is that it can be completely tilted within the bay by ±13º to allow for better viewing, a nice benefit for OB racks operation.
The front panel of the Rx2000 has two 11 cm (4.3 inch) 16 x 9 LCDs. The left display is for video confidence while the right offers control menus and test displays. A 4 W stereo audio speaker system (left and right of the displays) is also provided (with front-panel volume control) and a quarter-inch audio jack. A USB 2.0 jack is also provided on that side of the panel.
Under the confidence LCD there are 8 preset buttons and under the instrument LCD there are 8 function buttons. To the right there is a navigation system in the form of up/down/left/right/enter buttons.
On the rear panel of the mother unit is housed the XLR power input socket (requiring 9 – 17 Vdc), a temperature-controlled blower, and 9 sockets. Of those four are BNCs with two for reference loop-through, one for AES input, and one for a rasterized HD/SDI output from the instrument. The latter, at 1920x1080, can be routed anywhere in the facility. The same SDI output is also provided on an HDMI socket and both can be switched between video and instrumentation displays with up to 99 presets. Additionally, there are two USB 2.0 ports, an RJ-45 socket for Ethernet control, and a 26-way sub-D for GPIs and analog audio.
Above those connectors are the slots for two of the modules (side-by-side) while a further two modules can be incorporated directly to the right and above. The system can be supplied ready for either SD/HD-SDI use or for 3G-SDI formats while the former can be upgraded to the latter by software.
The modules available include single and dual input video analyzers, a four and eight channel AES audio analyzer, a video generator, dual input eye/jitter analyzer, Dolby E analyzer, loudness metering, ancillary V/H analyzer, programmable zone plate, advanced format generator, plus others.
The displays include typical waveforms and vectors, eye diagrams, as well as many data displays. All the features are controllable both from the front panel and from mouse/keyboard control and from within standard web browsers
This is a really nice system. It can be customized, with different modules, for multiple locations within an SDI environment and could, with the right marketing, end up in virtually every video/audio rack. It is a much more useful application of the company’s heretofore portable instruments. The company has also extended the modules available to make them attractive to the video equipment manufacturer working in both today’s standards and many from tomorrow as well. It would be nice if the video confidence display could also be switched to some of the instrument displays so that production desk applications for the system could be multiplied. No indication is made in the literature seen of the power needs for the external dc supply for the system: because the system is quite shallow (six inches without cables?) a power supply could be mounted on the rear of the rack. We would obviously also like to feel the integrity of the tilt mechanism especially when a fully-loaded system is weighted with cabling.
Phabrix has chosen Leader instruments to distribute its products in the North American market. Leader’s web site is a fairly awful place and there is no indication of delivery schedules for the Rx2000 system. At press time there had been no response from Leader on pricing.