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 HDMI Extender

Semiconductor Solutions for HDMI Extension

Semtech’s AVX chipset is uniquely designed to transmit AV content, up to 4KP60 4:4:4 (HDMI 2.0b), over both copper category cabling and optical fiber. By leveraging the same technology used for 10G Ethernet, AVX enables transmission up to 100m using Cat-6a unshielded twisted pair (UTP) cable, or tens of kilometers using optical fiber. AVX-based devices simultaneously transmit uncompressed-quality 4K video, multi-channel audio, Gigabit Ethernet, USB, and other control signals, offering unprecedented levels of performance for standalone point-to-point AV extenders. As shown in the diagram, the low cost AVX100 AV Extender can be used to extend HDMI over 100m of Cat-6a standard copper category cabling, with imperceptible end-to-end latency performance. Combined with fully integrated USB-HID, the AVX100 can also extend USB devices such as a keyboard and mouse, allowing PCs to be placed in remote, secure locations, while allowing the user more desk space and a quieter environment.

Figure 1. AVX100 AV Extender can be used to extend HDMI over 100m of Cat-6a standard copper category cabling, including extending USB devices such as keyboard and mouse, when combined with fully integrated USB-HID.

Bi-directional Extender

The AVX ASIC is a perfect replacement for existing AV extension technologies with a new generation of fiber-based products for true long reach performance at cost points lower than existing copper-based solutions. Unique to the AVX200T Transceiver, the chip supports true bidirectional HDMI connectivity, providing simultaneous transmission of AV signals in both directions over a single fiber pair. These features enable manufacturers to develop a new class of point-to-point AV extension products which can dramatically reduce both material costs and the cost of installation. The AVX200T integrates a broadcast quality scaler which can be used to convert the image format at the transmit or receive end. Using an AVX100-based transmitter paired with an AVX200T-based receiver, the output resolution can be fixed to that of the connected display resolution regardless of the original source format. The scaler can also be used to crop and scale images for video wall applications, saving the significant additional costs associated with dedicated video wall processors.

Figure 2. The AVX200T Transceiver uniquely supports true bidirectional HDMI connectivity for simultaneous transmission of AV signals in both directions over a single fiber pair.

Compatibility with AVP

Both of Semtech’s ProAV platforms, AVX and BlueRiver® AVP, use standard 10 Gigabit (10G) Ethernet connectivity and IP protocol to extend HDMI video up to 4K, multichannel digital audio and control interfaces, such as USB and RS-232, over 100m of copper category cabling, or many hundreds of meters over optical fiber. The key difference is that AVX devices provide point-to-point 10G connectivity, while AVP powered products permit flexible IP networking capability using standard 10G Ethernet switches. As shown in the above video conferencing example setup, it’s possible to connect any AVX endpoint directly to any AVP endpoint and AV traffic will flow from end to end, fully plug-and-play. And with transceiver-enabled endpoints, HDMI traffic will flow in both directions simultaneously, without limitation. As more and more manufacturers provide native SDVoE connectivity on their products, interoperability with AVX ensures that this interface can be used even when simple, single source point-to-point connectivity is all that is required. For example, the same cable infrastructure can be used for an SDVoE-enabled ceiling mounted projector, whether it is used standalone with a local AVX extended source, or connected to a network for SDVoE AV-over-IP connectivity.

Figure 3. Semtech’s ProAV platforms – AVX and BlueRiver AVP – are fully compatible. In this video conferencing example, any AVX endpoint can connect directly to any AVP endpoint, with AV traffic flowing from end-to-end, fully plug and play.

Inside the Box with AVX200: A True Bi-Directional HDMI Solution

Using Semtech’s powerful AVX200T AV Extender, only a small number of components are required to implement a true bi-directional HDMI extender solution. By enabling the AV processing engine of the AVX200T, the HDMI output can be configured to match the optimum resolution of the connected display, so regardless of the image format at the source, the display is providing the best possible visual experience.


Figure 4. In this example over copper, the HDMI output can be configured to match the connected display’s optimum resolution, based on the AVX200T’s AV processing engine.

By pairing the AVX200T with a standard SFP+ optical fiber module, cost effective HDMI extenders can be realized with cable reach performance far greater than any existing copper-based extender solution. Combined with full support of simultaneous HDMI in and out, the number of extenders required in an installation can also be reduced, saving on system costs.

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Figure 5. When paired with a standard SFP+ optical fiber module, AVX200T enables far greater reach performance than any existing copper-based solutions.

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