IFA 2003 Berlin exhibition report



Humax had a large and interesting stand, at which not only the latest products, such as digital terrestrial set-top boxes with hard disc and DVD players, were shown, but also home cinema accessories.

The list of new products made by Humax was really impressive: F2-Fox, F2-1001T, F1-4000T, CI-8100, VI-8140 (MHP), PR-Fox, PR-Fox C (for terrestrial TV), BTCI-5900S/C, CX-1201C, PVR-9100, PVR-8000, CI-8100PVR, DV-1100S, PVR-8000T, DV-1000T and PVR-9000T. Unfortunately, new ID Digital CI-44 and F-44 were not displayed; the HDTV STB Humax receiver was shown instead.

The Humax DV-1100S, which is a receiver equipped with DVD Combo will soon come onto the market. That model belongs to a new class of products - digital satellite receivers with embedded DVD. They combine three features: digital reception from satellite, DVD functions and the access to MP3. The retail price of that receiver in Europe is 280GBP (expected at the end of September 2003).

The Humax F2-1001T is a tiny set-top box, which enables high quality reception of digital terrestrial television programmes.

The Humax F2-1001T can receive up to 200 channels and it has five favourite channels groups, forty channels in each. The channels can be sorted by numerical and alphabetical order. Channels searching is in automatic, manual or in network search. The box costs only 100GBP and has been available on the European digital TV market for next weeks.

The Humax PVR-8000T and PVR-9000T are the latest products by Humax - they have been designed to receive digital terrestrial television and belong to PVR (Personal Video Recording) class, what means that they come with the hard disc.

The tiny PR-Fox set-top box with embedded Nagravision was specifically designed for German Premiere package (Geeignet fur Premiere). The box has two Scart connectors, new RS-232C, video/audio RCA output and optical digital audio output. The cable version of the same tuner, marked as PR-Fox C is also available. Very demanding customers should be satisfied with the Humax BTCI-5900.

German Globo Group, whose Polish partner Kwant, the company based in Szczecin, produces Opticum, Skybox and Hevet receivers. Just before IFA 2003 exhibition, Globo Group bought 50 per cent of Kwant shares, what gives the Polish company the guaranteed supply of unlimited number of FTA or CI receivers, LNBs, dishes and other accessories. Globo warehouses usually store up to 100 thousand receivers. The company intends to start producing and assembling digital receivers in Poland on a large scale.

Globo and Kwant presented the latest Opticum 2CI Twin PVR with 40GB disc (the picture shows the disc inside the receiver) and twin tuner (recording and playing back) with two loopthroughs to other tuners. The product will soon be available on the German and Polish market. The other interesting model was the Hevet Digital 1500 for digital terrestrial broadcasting. New FTA receivers made by Hevet - Digital 600FTA i Digital610FTA (slim line) are to be introduced shortly.

Another Polish company represented at the exhibition was Sat Ltd from Wroclaw, which was using German stand of Chakir Telecommunication from Rudersberg, the producer of popular in Poland Intersat receivers and Golden Interstar 0,3dB LNBs with characteristic yellow tops.

The full range of GI LNBs was shown, including some new models with casings in different colours: red, blue and green.

The latest Interstar receivers, DSR-8000Plus (3000 channels), DSR-8001 Premium (6000 channels!), DSR-9002 CI DVD (2CI + DVD player, 5000 channels), DSR-8006 CI XCAM (2CI + Conax) were also displayed.

The stand of Chaintech/BEC/Triple Dragon attracted a lot of attention due to three boxes of DVB3000 project (described in previous issue of Satkurier). The BEC product advertised as First Digital Home Cinema S-Recorder was given the name Triple Dragon. The boxes were marked as: DBS-3000 CNCIE (digital receiver with embedded Conax and 2CI), DVR-3000*&D2 (with hard disc and DVD R/RW recorder), DAP-3000A&P22 (audio with Dolby Digital). These are the devices with great potential, which successfully compete with famous Dreambox on the German market.

German Technisat exhibited few satellite receivers, among them Digit D and Digit CIP, which are well known on the European market. Terrestrial digital receivers enjoy immense popularity, particularly among customers in Germany. The Technisat InterDigital-T is a well-designed receiver with two Scart sockets, USB and 56kbit/s modem. It enables software download and has a digital audio output. On-screen display is available in German and English. The tiny Technisat DigitPal 1 is a less complex box capable of receiving 1000 channels, equipped with one Scart socket, the modulator and power supply of 12V. The casing is black and silvery. The Technisat DigiCorder T1 is designed for DVB-T and has 40GB hard drive, digital audio output and alphanumeric display. Technisat DigitPal S (or T) is a small FTA satellite(terrestrial) receiver (158mm x 47mm x 115mm) with one Scart socket, the modulator and power supply of 220V and 12V.

British company Pace presented the DS210, a small digital satellite receiver with one slot for Premiere viewing cards in Nagravision, so-called Geeignet fur Premiere. The back panel of the Pace DSP210 has only two Scart sockets, LNB input without loopthrough, audio L/P output and optical digital output. It is a pity that Cyfrowy Polsat does not have such a receiver on offer, as the Pace brand name could considerably enhance the Polish platform's prestige. As a matter of fact, if Pace changed the access system in the DSP210 into Seca-MediaGuard, the receiver would be ideal for Cyfra+. Pace also presented the other already known receivers, such as the Pace Puma or the CD.TV415 - a successor to the CD.TV410.

Korean Hyundai showed the whole range of new digital receivers. There were two CI receivers (Hyundai HSS-850CI and HSS-630CI) and two FTA receivers - HSS-750 and HSS-530. Hyundai HSS-2100MHP is an MHP receiver. There were also four receivers with embedded conditional access systems: HSS-1100NA with Nagravision, HSS-1200IR with Irdeto, HSS-1400CN with Conax and HSS-1500ND with NDS-VideoGuard. Two PVR tuners with hard drive, HSS-880* (80G:cool: and HSS-840* (40G:cool: aroused the greatest interest among visitors.

The Combo type receivers that combine a satellite receiver with other device are becoming more and more popular. That other device can be a cable receiver, a DVB-T receiver or a DVD player. In fact, digital satellite or digital terrestrial receivers with built-in DVD recorders are devices of the future.

Samsung company showed the Combo SST-7300 consisting of two receivers: satellite digital and digital terrestrial. It has 1000 terrestrial channels, is DVB-T compatible and fitted with the digital audio output. The other company called Kaon presented the Combo KCSC-570, which combines a digital satellite receiver with two CI and a cable receiver. Another receiver produced by Kaon, the KTSC-570Combo combines a digital satellite receiver with two CI and a terrestrial receiver with 80GB hard disc.

Wela Electronics Handels GmbH made very interesting presentations on possibilities of the Smart MSP01 multimedia centre, which combines many devices: the MPEG-2/MPEG-4 satellite receiver (cable receiver is also possible), a DVD player, a CD player, MP3, and a PC computer connected to the Internet.

Smart MSP01 has Intel Celeron processor 2GHz with ASUS P4S8L, 256MB DDRAM memory and 80GB disc. There are also USB2.0, Firewire, the socket for external mouse and keyboard, digital audio input and output and DV output, optional CI sockets, the card for ISDN or analogue TV tuner.

The Smart MSP01 enables recording and playback of video material and MP3. It uses e-mail and the Internet search engine.

German company named Rotek Mikroelektronik GmbH showed very interesting multiswitches, among them the particularly innovative the Rotek PMSE 17/4 multiswitch, which enables four users to control the DiSEqC2.0 signal from four satellites.

Taiwanese G-Star Apollo LNBs, including Universal Single, Monoblock and 8-outputs attracted a lot of attention. G-Star Apollo Single marked as the Gu411-28 had casing available in different colours. One of G-Star Monoblock LNBs is known in Poland as the UN5121. It consists of two G-Star Single LNBs joined by DiSEqC switch. G-Star also presented two new design solutions for Monoblock LNB casing, one of them being Gu-461-27 with noise figure 0,7dB. G-Star also offers 8- outputs Universal LNB called Gu-418-01 with noise figure 0,6dB.

German IMC company showed interesting design concepts for CAMOS CSA 336AVH/VH flat satellite dishes measuring 35 x 35 x 10cm. These dishes can be used in vehicles with automatic satellite search. The dish is wrapped in plastic casing with diameter of 53cm and height of 25cm. The company delivers monitors and LCD mini-monitors (from 4" to 15") for cars, car DVD players (DV-2000 and DV-3100) and satellite receivers (SVR-200 measuring 205x38x 155mm and its weight is 820g).