Crystal Vision Downconverter Packs AFD Ability

It uses the SMPTE 2016 AFD data embedded in an HD video input to automatically select the appropriate aspect ratio when downconverting.
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Crystal Vision has released new versions of its downconverter and distribution amplifier. The two new Q-Down-A-AFD cards combine flexible outputs, high image quality, and the ability to use the SMPTE 2016 AFD data embedded in an HD video input to automatically select the appropriate aspect ratio when downconverting.

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Crystal Vision Q-Down-A-AFD

Flexible output combinations make the cards suitable for a large number of applications—HD distribution amplifier, SDI distribution amplifier, HD-to-digital-SD downconverter, HD-to-analog downconverter, or standard-definition D-to-A.

The Q-Down123-A-AFD gives two reclocked loop-throughs of the HD or SD input, while the “double decker” Q-Down183-A-AFD gives eight loop-throughs. Both versions additionally provide three SD outputs (individually selectable between analog and digital) One of the loop-throughs can alternatively be exchanged for a dedicated SDI output, further increasing the number of applications.

“We worked hard to get this low cost down converter to be good enough for the major broadcasters to accept for use in their main program path,” said Crystal Vision Managing Director Philip Scofield. “We needed to maintain all the sharpness of an HD signal that could be transferred to SD without any of the aliasing caused by trying to pass signals that shouldn't be there. We also wanted to offer a short processing delay of just 16 lines to avoid the requirement for matching audio and video delays in the system.”

Q-Down-A-AFD is ideal for those working with embedded audio. With an HD input it will de-embed the two groups of audio, converting them to the appropriate format before re-embedding them into the digital SD output. With an SD input, it will pass two groups of embedded audio transparently to the digital SD output. Other notable features include a variable video delay of up to one video frame, adjustable in one-line steps, allowing it to match other equipment delays in the system; and signal probe functionality which makes it useful for flagging up faulty signals.

Crystal Vision


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