Softel Launches vFlex HD, A Compact VBI, VANC and Graphics Processing Platform


Last Updated: August 18, 2009 7:02 pm GMT
(Pangbourne, England--August 18, 2009) Softel today announced the launch of the vFlex HD, a multipurpose ancillary VBI, VANC and graphics data processing unit for HD and SD broadcast applications. vFlex HD, complementing the highly successful vFlex SD and offering the same functionality, provides a compact, single-unit solution for multichannel configurations and highly complex multi-event cuing and opting, enabling network operators to better service client demands for flexible regional broadcasting and targeted advertising.

vFlex HD encodes, decodes, re-encodes and regenerates vertical blanking interval (VBI) content including widescreen signalling (WSS), Video Programming System (VPS), cuing, Teletext, subtitling, video index and PDC signals. This gives broadcasters and network operators the flexibility to implement and integrate new services, reusing the original source ancillary data or accurately inserting replacement data, with the minimum of effort and cost. Support for OP47 and SMPTE 2031 encoding and decoding for HD-SDI means that vFlex HD can insert subtitling and other information services into the HD video path, allowing self-contained and easily portable media assets containing ancillary data to be created, and streamlining workflows.

vFlex HD uniquely combines these functions with encoding of animated or stationary logos and CG clocks under manual or automation control, and the output of 'Key & Fill' signals for downstream mixers, allowing the insertion of graphics without a dedicated character generator. These CG functions additionally provide generation of SD and HD open subtitles — especially useful for cost-conscious broadcasters.

"vFlex HD brings together the collected expertise of our years developing and deploying data inserters, cue encoders and subtitling character generators, into a highly versatile and powerful new platform," says Sam Pemberton, Softel CEO. "vFlex HD's multipurpose design helps reduce running and maintenance costs, with its 1U low-power consumption design and optimised power management features. Integrated with other Softel solutions, such as Cyclone Teletext generators and Swift subtitle transmission units, vFlex HD truly is the most flexible and powerful ancillary data inserter available today."

Broadcast-ready with dual power supplies, network interface cards (NICs) and timecode reading, vFlex HD offers robust functionality and low maintenance demands. Web-based remote management, configuration and control, combined with Network, Serial and GPI interfaces, make vFlex HD easy to integrate with any infrastructure and deploy in large scale, high density installations. A simple custom designed front panel with quick access buttons allows for rapid local access to configuration and control functions, which along with independent monitoring output, further eases management and helps ensure a high quality of service.

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