GatesAir to Unveil New DAB Radio Innovations

GatesAir, a global leader in wireless, over-the-air content delivery solutions for radio and TV broadcasters, has expanded its range of DAB Radio transmitters and solutions to include multi-carrier and liquid-cooled innovations at IBC2019. Many of the new innovations result from the company’s recent acquisition of ONEtastic, known forward as GatesAir S.r.l.

While GatesAir has long offered low-power DAB Radio air-cooled solutions through its Maxiva VAXT and VAXTE product lines, the acquisition introduces several key product innovations that will be new to GatesAir customers. In addition to the multi-carrier and liquid-cooled transmitters, GatesAir will demonstrate new intra-mast and outdoor solutions that can support TV and DAB modulations in the same compact chassis. GatesAir will also unveil an expanded range of air-cooled DAB transmitters to cover all power levels starting at 15W.

The acquisition also brings new design and engineering innovations to GatesAir, including no-cable, plug-in architectures that accelerate assembly and maintenance, reduce clutter and maintenance, and increase system reliability. GatesAir’s latest DAB Radio transmitters also leverage a single-band PA module to cover all Band III frequencies – a unique competitive advantage that eliminates jumpers, tuning and other frequency-related adjustments.

“GatesAir’s experience in equipping today’s largest DAB Radio networks is now further strengthened with a product portfolio that covers a broader range of power levels, and introduces several new design innovations and feature sets to our customers,” said Bruce Swail, CEO, GatesAir. “In addition to fortifying our long-standing message of supplying high-efficiency, cost-reducing and turnkey transmission solutions, our latest design innovations strengthen our overall value proposition for broadcasters and network operators managing DAB networks of any scale.”

New Transmitter Innovations

GatesAir’s MultiD multi-carrier platform brings three DAB transmitters together into a compact 1RU chassis — a unique design attribute that reduces space and equipment costs, and simplifies installation. The multi-carrier architecture removes the need for external RF combining, and instead generates and re-transmits all three channels through a single amplifier. The multi-carrier modulation built into the transmitter supports both adjacent and non-adjacent frequencies, providing a flexible solution for DAB networks of any size. GatesAir will exhibit an operating transmitter, together with a spectrum analyzer display, to demonstrate the optimized performance and flexibility of the MultiD innovation.

GatesAir will also unveil a liquid-cooled VHF Band III power amplifier from its new Maxiva VLXTE range of high-efficiency, liquid-cooled transmitters. Starting at 3 kW, all VLXTE liquid-cooled transmitters cover DAB/DAB+ frequencies from 170-240MHz, with a modular design that support inputs for ETI (coaxial) and EDI (IP) distribution across DAB networks. Maxiva VLXTE transmitters are completely frequency-agile across the Band III spectrum, providing a cost-effective, high-efficiency solution for all N+1 applications. GatesAir’s liquid-cooled architecture also gives customers a cost-efficient solution for all power levels up to 15 kW, with increased cost-savings and ROI as power levels rise.

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GatesAir Liquid Cooled VHF DAB

GatesAir will also demonstrate two flexible transmission platforms with uncommon architectures that can support TV and DAB Radio modulations simultaneously in the same platform:

  • A new outdoor pole-mounted solution sealed by a telecom-grade, weatherproof enclosure that can house multiple low-power DAB Radio transmitters and gap fillers. The DC-powered, pole-mount design eliminates all moving parts and air filters, dissipating heat to the pole’s surface for optimized efficiency and performance.
  • A new “intra-mast” transmitter, designed for installation inside a cylindrical tower that can house up to six 70 W DAB transmitter or gap filler modules.

GatesAir exhibits at Stand 8.D60 from September 13-17 at the RAI Conference and Exhibition Center in Amsterdam.

GatesAir Brings Over-The-Air Leadership Message to BroadcastAsia 2019

GatesAir, a global leader in wireless, over-the-air content delivery solutions for TV and radio broadcasters, returns to BroadcastAsia with a broader product portfolio foremerging low-power and digital broadcasting opportunities throughout the region. In addition to its existing range of Maxiva and Flexiva transmitters, the company will also highlight new TV and DAB Radio transmitters procured through its acquisition of ONEtastic. New innovations include the debut ofa weatherized pole-mounted TV transmitter built to deliver high-performance, low-power and gap-filler solutions in challenging outdoor environments.

BroadcastAsia 2019 also marks the regional debut of new Maxiva TV (10 W to 2kW) and Flexiva FM radio transmitters (7.5 kW) introduced at NAB in April. GatesAir will demonstrate a broad range of its high-efficiency UHF, VHF, DAB and FM transmitters across all power levels, with an emphasis on guiding broadcasters through complex digital transitions and refreshing analog infrastructure. The company’s software-defined Maxiva XTE exciter will be at the center of all digital TV demonstrations, offering broadcasters a path to any digital standard while optimizing performance and stability.

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GatesAir will round out its BroadcastAsia 2019 presence with its latest Intraplex audio contribution and distribution solutions, including its new IT-based Ascent Audio over IP platform. Receiving its regional debut, Intraplex Ascent represents the latest in broadcast and IT convergence, and is GatesAir’s first Intraplex system to live on a COTS x86 server. Ascent provides broadcasters with a highly scalable, redundant and cloud-based transport platform for multichannel contribution and distribution. Designed for centralized control and maximum interconnectivity, Ascent is compliant with the AES67 standard, today’s leading AoIP networking solutions, and most Intraplex Audio over IP codecs.

GatesAir’s problem-solving approach will be a common theme across all exhibits and demonstrations, with a focus on helping customers reduce operational costs, add new services, and transition to more efficient platforms. Chief among these include embracing the flexible capabilities of single-frequency networking (SFN) for TV and radio broadcasting, and leveraging IP as a primary transport method for audio and data.

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“GatesAir has spent the last six months aggressively growing its global presence, both throughinternational team expansion and the strategic acquisition of ONEtastic,” said Rich Redmond, President and Managing Director, International for GatesAir. “We are excited to bring our message of low total cost of ownership, innovative problem-solving, and strong service and support toBroadcastAsia as we prepare our customers for the next generation of over-the-air broadcast opportunities worldwide.”

GatesAir exhibits at Stand 4Q3-01 at BroadcastAsia 2019, which takes place June 18-20 at Suntec Singapore.

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GatesAir Continues Spectrum Repack Dominance with 300th Transmitter Shipment

GatesAir today fortifies its market leading repack transmitter position with the delivery of its 300th repack transmitter. WPCB-TV, a Cornerstone Television station serving the Pittsburgh market, took delivery of its new Maxiva ULXTE-50 liquid-cooled transmitter late last week.WPCB has been repacked from Channel 50 to Channel 28, and will transmit at 31.7 kW from its new frequency beginning August 2.

GatesAir’s leadership in repack sales and shipments continues unabated. To date, GatesAir has shipped 11,273 power amplifiers, which represents more than 6.4 Megawatts of transmission power.GatesAir has successfully met all shipping deadlines to date thanks to careful staffing and manufacturing initiatives put into place by Vice President of Operations Bryant Burke.

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GatesAir CEO Bruce D. Swail notes that GatesAir has also logged nearly 38 million amplifier in-service hours of repack projects, which provides a strong measurement of reliability and performance for GatesAir customers. All GatesAir transmitters are made in the USA at the company’s Quincy, Illinois manufacturing center.

“With the most cutting-edge power amplification tech in the market, our Maxiva transmitters have accumulated an impressive number of in-service pallet hours that continues to climb, solidifying ourreputation for high performance and unmatched reliability,” said Swail. “Combined with on-time deliveries, transmitter site consultations and unparalleled customer service, GatesAir continues as the leading and most trusted supplier of repack transmitters and services.”

WPCB was granted a power increase for its Phase 4 repack assignment. Steve Johnson, VP Operations for Cornerstone Television, points to GatesAir’s customer support and high-efficiency solid-state technology as key deciding factors. The transition from tube to solid-state will eliminate costly tube maintenance, and provide a high-efficiency platform to offset utility costs from the station’spower increase.

Johnson also purchased a Maxiva VAXTE-6L air-cooled transmitter for WKBS-TV in the Altoona/Johnstown, PA market. WKBS, a full satellite of WPCB, will be repacked from UHF Channel 46 to low-band VHF channel 6 in Phase 6.

“GatesAir is one of the few vendors to offer reliable repack transmitters for low-band VHF, and our engineers can leverage a common user interface to remotely monitor and manage both Maxiva transmitters,” said Johnson. “We are impressed with the strength of their customer service, and the heritage and longevity of the company. Support is always a phone call away in Quincy, which has made a positive and lasting impact. We look forward to a long relationship with GatesAir.”

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GatesAir to Emphasize ATSC 3.0 and NextGen TV Momentum at 2019 NAB Show

GatesAir, a global leader in wireless, over-the-air content delivery solutions for TV and radio broadcasters, comes to the 2019 NAB Show in Las Vegas next week with fresh momentum behind its ATSC 3.0 innovations for NextGen television – specifically in the area of Single Frequency Network (SFN) architectures.

Gates_Air-Maxiva2GatesAir last year announced its participation in the Phoenix Model Market project, a collaborative trial led by the Pearl TV consortium. The project involves one dozen Phoenix, Arizona area broadcasters, with technology supplied by GatesAir and other key industry supplies to support testing. GatesAir last year supplied a low-power Maxiva™ UAXTE air-cooled transmitter for the initial phase, which used a single transmitter for over-the-air tests.

Pearl TV today announced that the test bed will expand to multiple transmission sites, establishing a true SFN architecture. GatesAir will supply a Maxiva ULXTE-10, 6.6 kW liquid-cooled transmitter for this second phase to help broadcasters evaluate the benefits of SFN transmissions in a NextGen ATSC 3.0 system.

Single Frequency Networks use two or more transmitters within the same market to improve signal coverage and fill in challenging coverage gaps. SFN architectures are key to moving beyond the principal of signal coverage to the signal capable of providing service, and successful in-home and on-the-go service is paramount to NextGen TV’s success. GatesAir supports many of the largest SFN deployments worldwide, including digital TV networks in Brazil (ISDB-Tb) and Asia (DVB-T2); as well as MaxxCasting SFN systems for FM radio in the United States.

ATSC 3.0 Activities and New LPTV Models

GatesAir will also participate in key ATSC 3.0 demonstrations around the NAB show floor, including a North Hall SFN demonstration sponsored by the NAB Science and Technology department. GatesAir will provide one of four transmitters powering live, on-air broadcasts for the network. Visitors to the GatesAir booth (N3303) can see the operational Maxiva UAXTE along with the live, real-time ATSC 3.0 broadcast. An active demonstration at Booth N2512 as part of ATSC’s “Ride the Road to ATSC 3.0” campaign will also allow attendees to experience the North Hall SFN demonstration, and explore the many opportunities that the ATSC 3.0 standard and NextGen TV offer to local broadcasters.

GatesAir will additionally introduce a new range of ATSC 3.0-ready, low-power Maxiva ULXTE transmitters at NAB. Covering LPTV requirements from 10 W to 2 kW, the new compact transmitter designs have been developed to serve global customers with limited real estate and high operating expenses, as well as low-power U.S. broadcasters moving to new channel assignments in future repack phases. These new models will be demonstrated alongside GatesAir’s broader range of high-efficiency ULXTE and UAXTE transmitters covering all power levels.

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GatesAir Expands EMEA Sales Force with Appointment of Alexander Kurz

GatesAir, a global leader in wireless, over-the-air content delivery solutions for radio and TV broadcasters, continues to bolster its EMEA sales team with appointment of broadcast industry veteran Alexander Kurz. Reporting to Andy McClelland, Managing Director, EMEA and India, Kurz will work closely with the broader EMEA sales and business development team to increase market share and raise brand awareness in the DACH (Germany, Austria, Switzerland) region. He will also cover most European countries and CIS (Commonwealth of Independent States) countries south and east to the Ukrainian and Russian borders.

Kurz brings more than 20 years of industry experience to his new role, with extensive expertise guiding customers through digital TV transitions. He joins GatesAir from NeuLion, where he helped over-the-air broadcasters and PayTV providers distribute and monetize OTT content to complement existing TV services. Kurz also has more than 15 years of experience in the test and measurement field with Ineoquest and Tektronix, where he regularly supplied customized quality assurance solutions for DTV headend and transmission systems.

Kurz sees tremendous opportunity for GatesAir to capture regional market share for TV and radio systems with its high-efficiency Maxiva and Flexiva transmitters, emphasizing the changing habits of video consumption and the staying power of radio as a medium.

“Many of these countries have moved from analog to DVB-T digital television, and we see enormous opportunity to transition these systems to the more bandwidth-efficient DVB-T2 standard,” said Kurz. “Such transitions are growing increasingly attractive to broadcasters in this region as more viewers cut the cord, and move to OTA and OTT for television. GatesAir has the ideal technology to transition our customers to DVB-T2 with incremental upgrades that prevent disruption to existing over-the-air operations, and deliver the improved bandwidth efficiency and performance capabilities that will enable richer, higher quality DTV services.”

Kurz adds that radio remains strong throughout the region, noting a healthy demand for renewed FM infrastructure and a desire to leverage IP networks for audio contribution and distribution.

“There is an FM radio in every household and new car, and we see burgeoning opportunities for DAB Radio driven by government mandates and a thirst for stronger audio services,” he said. “In addition, GatesAir’s Intraplex networking products will help broadcasters transition to IP-based transport methods, while retaining the resiliency and reliability of traditional transport and delivery methods.”

Kurz will also work closely with EMEA Business Development Manager Peter Timmons to support regional roadshows, customer visits and partner training sessions.

“Alexander’s depth of broadcast experience and regional knowledge, including strong customer relationships that he has solidified over more than two decades, makes him the ideal person to strengthen GatesAir’s visibility and market share in the DACH and eastern European regions,” said Rich Redmond, President and Managing Director, International for GatesAir. “We are excited to welcome him to the team as we continue to expand our presence throughout EMEA and other international regions.”

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GatesAir Supplies Maxiva™ XTE Exciter for DVB-T2 Field Trials on Australia’s Gold Coast

GatesAir, a global leader in wireless, over-the-air content delivery solutions for TV and radio broadcasters, has supplied its Maxiva™ XTE exciter to prominent Australian broadcast entities — TX Australia, Broadcast Australia, and Free TV — for DVB-T2 field trials on Australia’s Gold Coast, just south of Brisbane. Following a trial in Sydney earlier this year, the capabilities of DVB-T2 will again be tested, including in an extended single-frequency network (SFN). DVB-T2 is being considered as a technology to replace the current DVB-T standard for television, which has been in operation since 2001.

“GatesAir has a long history of field trial support in advance of digital transitions worldwide, and this Gold Coast initiative represents an important step in Australia’s consideration of migration from DVB-T to DVB-T2,” said Rich Redmond, President and Managing Director, International for GatesAir. “With its 4K picture quality, IP-based transmission, and superior, broadband capabilities, DVB-T2 offers over-the-air broadcasters and viewers many programming advantages. This collaboration between TX Australia, Free TV Australia, and Broadcast Australia is a prime example of the innovation and first-class engineering skills within the Australian broadcast industry.”

A key objective of these field trials is to test and verify interoperability between third-party systems used in both classic transmission and SFN configurations.

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According to Redmond, “The GatesAir Maxiva XTE Exciter platform has already demonstrated reliable, seamless transmission performance in multi-vendor DVB-T2 installations across Europe and Asia.”

This latest DVB-T2 trial will originate from a Gold Coast re-transmission site located on Mount Tamborine, which is managed by TX Australia, a joint venture company of the Seven, Nine, and Ten broadcast television networks. TX Australia, which provides transmission services to a wide array of TV and FM broadcasters and networks across metropolitan Australia, has been collaborating closely with Free TV Australia, an industry body that represents all of Australia’s commercial free-to-air television licensees. Another key party to the field trials, Broadcast Australia, is responsible for delivering digital television and radio services for Australia’s national broadcasters.

The Gold Coast field trial utilizes the same video and audio content provided to the Sydney trial by members of Free TV. It also seeks to replicate the characteristics measured and analyzed in Sydney, including assessment of the service threshold across the target coverage area when operating in extended SFN mode.

TX Australia Executive Chairman Paul Mullen expressed appreciation for GatesAir’s contribution in a previous announcement. He also noted the importance of these trials for evaluating new technologies, and ensuring “the best quality content is available to the viewer.” More than 20 million Australians — 99% of the population — rely upon free, over-the-air television for live news, sports, and entertainment.

The Maxiva XTE includes native IP inputs and a software-defined modulator for seamless transition between analog and digital broadcast standards. The XTE design eliminates the need to retrofit transmitters to enable network connectivity for next-gen TV standards (DVB-T2, DVB-T2 Lite, ATSC 3.0), giving broadcasters an out-of-the-box solution to simplify the input and output of multimedia services via a local- or wide-area IP network. The XTE-driven modulation reduces costs and power consumption by lowering wattage requirements at the amplification stage, without affecting signal strength.

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GatesAir Wins in Mexico

Grupo Imagen is continuing the rollout of its FM radio and TV networks with channel partner Escape.

The project comprises 11 Flexiva FAX air-cooled FM radio transmitters ranging from 2.5kW and 40kW; and a mix of Maxiva ULXTE liquid-cooled and UAXTE air-cooled UHF TV transmitters. The specific TV transmitter breakdown includes three ULXTE models ranging from 6kW and 10kW; and four UAXTE air-cooled models ranging from 2 to 4kW.

GatesAir won the contract due to the high performance and reliability of previous-generation transmitters that have long been in operation. Two dedicated GatesAir field engineers based in Mexico will provide local service and support, which Grupo Imagen pointed to as an important deciding factor against competitive suppliers.

Grupo Imagen also identified reduced maintenance and common spare parts as significant benefits, as all 18 new transmitters will be spread across 17 cities. All Flexiva and Maxiva transmitters in the network will share the same hot-swappable power supplies and amplifier modules, minimizing time spent on labor and repairs while maximizing operational efficiency.