Texas Instruments | 3G-SDI: 32 Loop Cascade Analysis | Application notes | Texas Instruments 3G-SDI: 32 Loop Cascade Analysis Application notes

Texas Instruments 3G-SDI: 32 Loop Cascade Analysis Application notes
Literature Number: SNLA173
32 Loop Cascade Analysis
National Semiconductor
Lab Report
Nasser Mohammadi
October 2008
A distribution amplifier (DA) is often used as a repeater in broadcast video applications to extend
the reach of a link, most commonly 75Ω coaxial cable. The data path in a DA consists of an SDI
adaptive cable equalizer, SDI reclocker and SDI cable driver. In an operational system a video
signal may be transmitted through multiple DAs or similar equipment, such as a video router,
before reaching its final destination. The DA’s primary function is to reconstruct signal integrity of
the incoming attenuated signal back to its original state by opening the waveform eye (equalizer),
cleaning high-frequency jitter (reclocker) and setting appropriate slew rate and signal amplitude
(cable driver). Low frequency jitter, below the loop bandwidth of the reclocker’s PLL, will be
passed through. Adding several DAs in cascade will eventually result in accumulated low frequency jitter commonly referred to as jitter peaking. Some SDI reclockers and equalizers are
more susceptible to jitter peaking than others. This report focuses on an experiment to determine
the effects of cascading multiple DAs using National Semiconductor’s LMH0344 SDI adaptive
cable equalizer, LMH0356 SDI reclocker, and LMH0303 SDI cable driver.
In the experiment, eye patterns were collected, jitter tolerance graphs acquired using a PRBS10
and matrix pathological data patterns, and bit error rate testing (BERT) was conducted. This
report examines in detail the experiments performed and results obtained.
Table of Contents
Test Setup…………………………………..………………………………………………………………2
Jitter Definitions…………………………………………………………………………………………….3
SMPTE Jitter Requirements ………………………………..…………………………………………….4
Waveform Eye Diagrams.…………………………..……………………………………………………..5
Jitter Tolerance Measurements ……………………………………..……………………………………8
Bit Error Testing …………………………………………………………………………………………..10
Conclusion ………………………………………………………………………………………………...11
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Test Setup
Test Equipment List:
• Agilent N4903A J-BERT Bit Error Rate Tester
• Agilent DCA-J Scope
• HP 6023A DC Power Supply
Hardware List:
• Octal DA Evaluation Board (4)
• Pasternack 50Ω to 75Ω Adaptor PE7006
• Belden 1694A coaxial cable (100m lengths)
• Belden 1694A coaxial Cable (1m and 2m lengths)
• Room temperature
• 3.3V supply voltage
Figure 1 shows the experimental setup. After going through a 50Ω to 75Ω adaptor, the signal
from the 50Ω data output of the Agilent J-BERT goes through 120m of Belden 1694A cable. In
between each stage, 1m lengths of Belden 1694A cable connect consecutive DA ports. For the
jitter tolerance test, the last stage data and the recovered clock are fed to the test data input of
the Agilent J-BERT. A second 50Ω to 75Ω matching attenuator was used on the data output of
the DA cascade. An automated test program developed at National Semiconductor was run to
first align the clock and data and then record the jitter tolerance using a PRBS-10 data pattern.
FIGURE 1. Experimental Setup
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Jitter Definitions
In digital communication, jitter is defined as time deviation from the ideal timing of the signal
transition [1]. Any jitter that describes how much in time a clock edge varies can be given as a
peak-to-peak number. Peak-to-peak jitter specifications are convenient when the jitter is
deterministically characterizable. But as random jitter is probabilistic, it is difficult to say what the
maximum jitter can possibly be [2]. In general jitter is divided into two categories: Random Jitter
and Deterministic Jitter [2]:
Random jitter (RJ) is characterized by a Gaussian distribution and comes from physical sources
such as thermal noise, shot noise, and wave scattering in fiber (i.e. mainly from Multimode Fiber).
RJ is modeled as a Gaussian distribution and is used to predict peak-to-peak jitter as a function
of bit error [2].
Deterministic jitter (DJ) is generally bounded and non-Gaussian. Duty Cycle Distortion (DCD),
Periodic Jitter and Bounded Uncorrelated jitter all are components of Deterministic Jitter [3].
In Video applications, there is a potential for a long chain of regenerative repeaters. Signal
regeneration is beneficial in extending the reach of the transmission media, preventing the
accumulation of noise and distortion through the transmission media. However, the regenerative
repeater itself contributes an accumulation of jitter which can become a critical problem if it is not
properly controlled through the careful design of the timing recovery circuit. This accumulation of
jitter will typically result in a limit on the number of repeaters of a given design which can be
installed in the transmission path before the accumulated jitter becomes intolerable.
When considering the accumulation of jitter it is imperative to distinguish between the two basic
types of jitter. In a long chain of repeaters deterministic jitter greatly dominates random jitter [2].
This is because the DJ component is the same in each repeater and therefore adds coherently.
Effects of the jitter introduced by one repeater on the jitter introduced upstream will be slight as
long as the total introduced jitter remains low and thus we can assume that the jitter in each
repeater is additive [2].
Let’s assume each repeater has an equivalent jitter transfer function. We should consider the
following three cases [2]:
At frequencies where the jitter transfer function has gain, as the number of repeaters in cascade
increases, the overall jitter gain could approach infinity. As such, the jitter peaking of the PLL will
eventually limit the number of repeaters that can be placed in cascade.
For frequencies where the jitter transfer function has a magnitude much less than unity, meaning
the input jitter is attenuated through the repeater, we can say there is not much jitter accumulation
and the only significant jitter is that introduced in the last stage.
The third critical case is where the jitter transfer function is equal to unity (i.e. the input jitter is
passed through). This will occur within the pass band of the jitter transfer function. As such N
repeaters would result into N times the jitter amplitude and jitter increases in proportion to number
of loops or cascade. In this case, the only way to limit the accumulated jitter is to reduce loop
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SMPTE Jitter Requirements
Random jitter is specified in the way it describes clock edge fluctuations. Accordingly, jitter is
typically listed as an amount of one clock period, or an amount of one unit interval (UI). Should
the edge of a clock jitter around over time 10 picoseconds (ps) within a 100ps clock period, then
the jitter is 0.1 UI.
SMPTE Jitter Tolerance Specifications
FIGURE 2 – Jitter Tolerance Specifications from SMPTE
serial data transmission standards
The eye diagrams from the first twelve cascaded loops are shown next. The output clock from the
BERT was used as the trigger or clock source for the DCA-J scope. A PRBS10 data pattern was
Figure Number
Number of DAs
Table 1 – Eye Diagram Tests
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Data Pattern
FIGURE 3. Eye Diagram after the first stage using a PRBS10 data pattern
FIGURE 4. Eye Diagram after the second stage using a PRBS10 data pattern
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FIGURE 5. Eye Diagram after the third stage using a PRBS10 data pattern
FIGURE 6. Eye Diagram after the sixth stage using a PRBS10 data pattern
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FIGURE 7. Eye Diagram after the twelfth stage using a PRBS10 data pattern
Based on these eye diagrams, the PRBS10 data pattern which, from a spectral standpoint, is
very much like a color bar pattern, exhibits essentially the same jitter at every point in the
cascade. Thus it is conceivable that using the PRBS10 or color bar pattern we could potentially
have a much larger number of cascaded ports even than 32.
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Jitter Tolerance Measurements
The number of loops used in the experiment was increased from 1 to 8, 16, to 24, and then to 32.
For each cascade setup, the jitter tolerance was measured. Figures 8 and 9 show the jitter
tolerance for a PRBS10 data pattern and the matrix pathological data pattern, respectively.
1 Loop
24 Loops
32 Loops
32 Loops with 120m 1694A
Jitter Amplitude (UI)
Sinusoidal Jitter Frequency (Hz)
Figure 8. Jitter Transfer using PRBS10 data pattern
1 Loop
24 Loops
32 Loops
32 Loops with 120m 1694A
Jitter Amplitude (UI)
Sinusoidal Jitter Frequency (Hz)
Figure 9. Jitter Transfer using Matrix Pathological data pattern
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Inspection of jitter tolerance graphs shows that as the number of loops increase, the overall loop
bandwidth is reduced. Even with a cascade of 32 DAs, a jitter tolerance at high jitter frequencies
of 0.4 to 0.5UI is maintained. Further, the low frequency jitter tolerance is maintained at 250UI
(the limit of the instrumentation). This suggests that a cascade of more than 32 loops may be
achievable with reasonable performance.
Using the 32-port cascade setup and an Agilent J-BERT, we ran data with 0.5 UI of injected
sinusoidal jitter at 5 MHz through the cascade error-free for 3 consecutive days1. Note Figures 10,
11, and 12.
Figure 10. 32 Port Cascade Hardware Setup
BERT experiment was limited to three days due to equipment availability, no error was detected.
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Figure 11. J-BERT Jitter Setup for 32 port reference clock cascade application
Figure 12. J-BERT Result for 32 port reference clock cascade application
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Using the setup described in this report, we were able to successfully pass stressful signals
through 32 cascaded distribution amplifiers with zero bit errors demonstrating the robustness of
National Semiconductor’s SDI data path. We have conducted further experiments with a higher
number of cascaded stages and have not yet found the fundamental limit of the system. Through
the experiment, we demonstrate the low intrinsic output jitter of National’s LMH0344 SDI cable
equalizer and LMH0303 SDI cable driver. The LMH0356 reclocker shows very robust lowfrequency jitter tolerance while at high-frequencies the low-pass jitter transfer function attenuates
the input high-frequency jitter. Therefore, the system is able to pass matrix pathological and
PRBS10 (similar to color bars) data patterns while exceeding SMPTE jitter tolerance/transfer
requirements with significant margin. The Agilent J-BERT jitter measurements confirmed that the
system can run error free with at least 32 DAs in cascade for extended periods of time.
A single 27 MHz crystal as a reference clock for all 32 reclockers in this experiment. Please refer
to the Reference Clock Cascade Lab Report.
SMPTE Recommendation “Specification of Jitter in Bit-Serial Digital Systems” RP-184-2004
Revision of RP184-1996
Edward A. Lee & David G. Messerschmitt “Digital Communication” – Second Edition
National Semiconductor “LVDS Owner’s Manual” – Fourth Edition, 2008
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