As with DVB-T2, the enabling power of HEVC is working technical wonders for DVB-S2X, to the extent that four UHD channels are being transmitted over a 36MHz channel at a data rate of 102.67 Mbit/s. Modulation is 16 APSK.
“This content-to-screen achievement took three months to plan, and features a number of pieces in the chain that are quite new and not stable yet,” said DVB executive director Peter Siebert. “The satellite people have the advantage of a very big range of capacity, wider than terrestrial TV, and I am sure that there are pay TV operators that will start UHD services soon.”
This one-off demo set-up features content from Hispasat, SES Astra, Rai and the EBU, encoding by Thomson and multiplexing by Rohde & Schwarz, modulators from Newtec and Work Microwave and receivers from Creonic and Ericsson. What was the trickiest bit?
“The UHD set-top box from Pace. These have only just been developed, so we are at the beginning of that technology,” said Siebert. “And in this case the STB gets an IP stream.”
The advances from DVB-S2 come in Direct to Home (DTH). VSAT and DSNG.
“Everything you see is technically proven, but the question is will UHD TV become a commercial success? HEVC is the enabler for bringing UHD across the whole broadcast world,” said Siebert.