13-Jul-2004 Print page

Ultra-compact RFS manifold combiner

The latest addition to the leading UHF combiner range of RF technology group, Radio Frequency Systems (RFS), is an ultra-compact manifold combiner ideal for low-power digital television (DTV) broadcast sites. Designed for combining digital channels up to 250 W, the UHF manifold combiner offers an economical and space-efficient alternative to balanced modules, and will be unveiled at September’s IBC exhibition in Amsterdam.

“The manifold combiner has been developed in direct response to requests from broadcasters for an ultra-compact solution,” said RFS Area Product Manager Broadcast, Graham Broad. “It’s a fully integrated unit, and contains less than half the components used within our balanced combiner modules. For instance, the manifold configuration has just one RFS 50E filter instead of two, and the whole unit is therefore less than half the weight, has half the footprint, and is lower in cost.”

Displaying similar performance characteristics to RFS’s low-power integrated balanced combiner, the manifold model is also tuneable over the entire UHF band (470 to 860 MHz) for 6, 7 or 8 MHz bandwidths, features double temperature compensation, and exhibits low losses for its given filter sizes. According to Broad, a key differentiator is the availability of coaxial filters of up to 7-poles, offering semi-adjacent channel combining and transmitter DTV masking.

Although the manifold configuration can only combine channels down to semi-adjacent spacings, it can be used with balanced modules in a hybrid system to realize adjacent channel combining. “Essentially, the semi-adjacent combined channels exiting the manifold system can be fed into the wideband input of a balanced combiner system, and adjacent channels inserted,” said Broad. “This means that multiple adjacent channels can be combined using half-balanced and half-manifold units, resulting in a highly compact and low-cost system.”

Designed for wall mounting or installation within a standard 19-inch rack, the manifold combiner units alone can be used to combine up to six semi-adjacent channels, with a combined maximum output power of 750 W. This equates to 6 x 125 W or 3 x 250 W of potential input powers into the combiner, providing superior flexibility for broadcasters operating low power sites.

The new RFS integrated manifold combiner will be on display at RFS’s stand at IBC 2004: Hall 5 Stand 5.221, RAI Amsterdam, 10 to 13 September, 2004.

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