Summer 2009
Issue 20.2
Featured Product
Configurable Control Systems . . . . . 6
The Extron hotline
New Training Courses and Online ToolsWe've Got You Covered . . . . . . . . . 10
The Extron hotline
Extron Institute Schools Now Open
Throughout Asia . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11
Summer 2009
Configurable Touchpanel
Control Systems
Powerful Control Without Programming
t InfoComm 09, Extron is introducing TouchLink™, the first fully configurationbased touchpanel control system with the power to handle the control
needs of single display rooms, dual display rooms, divisible rooms, multiimage systems, and video conference suites. We pioneered configurable A/V
control systems with the highly successful MediaLink® family of push-button
controllers. Now, with TouchLink, we are set to revolutionize the way you design,
unique Techniques
How a Tennessee Utility District
Uses WindoWall™ to Improve
Operations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12
install, and maintain touchpanel systems. With our user-friendly, ready-to-use,
unique Techniques
MGP 464 a Winner at the
Pinewood Derby. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15
traditional programmable systems.
customizable, predesigned application templates, TouchLink Control Systems
can be deployed much faster, and are easier and less costly to support, than
The Classroom Connection
VoiceLift™ Microphone Systems. . . 17
Digital Connection
Digital Video for Pro A/V
Integration . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20
Technically Speaking
Switchmode Power Supplies . . . . . 28
also in this issue:
New Products. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 32
Extron Institute Dates . . . . . . . . . . . 40
Tradeshow Information. . . . . . . . . . 40
continued on page 2
Introducing touchlink
I n t r o d u c i n g To u c h l i n k C o n f i g u r a b l e To u c h p a n e l C o n t r o l S y s t e m s
The TouchLink System
With introduction of the TouchLink
Touchpanel Control System, Extron elevates
configurable control systems to the next
level. Just like MediaLink, TouchLink
doesn't require any programming skills to
deploy. Leveraging our years of experience
and library of thousands of tested and
documented Extron Certified device drivers,
we designed the TouchLink System to meet
the demands of the types of systems you
install every day.
Anyone familiar with configuring MediaLink®
or IP Link® systems with our free Global
Configurator software will be comfortable
configuring a TouchLink System using
the same easy-to-use tools and our
predesigned application templates.
TouchLink control systems are made
up of a touchpanel, a control processor,
predesigned application templates, and
user-friendly configuration software. This
ExtroNews 20.2 | Summer 2009
article will introduce you to each of these
new system components.
TouchLink Touchpanels
Three full-featured TouchLink touchpanel
models offer a variety of mounting options
with an attractive user interface suitable
for any room. The TLP 700MV, with a
seven-inch touchscreen, is designed
for mounting on a lectern or wall. The
TLP 700TV, also with a seven-inch
touchscreen, is designed for tabletop
or VESA mounting. The TLP 350CV is a
Cable Cubby® version that features a
3.5" touchscreen.
Each TLP Series TouchLink
touchpanel model features:
High Resolution Touchscreen: Full-color
in a size and quality that are ideal for our
predesigned application templates with
sophisticated touchscreen layouts.
— continued
Full-Motion Video: Each model accepts
a standard resolution video signal from any
source device, such as a DVD player, VCR,
security camera, or upstream switcher.
Customizable Backlit Buttons: These
tactile bi-color buttons can be customized
in their function and labeling to ensure
that frequently used or critical functions
are easily accessible, independent of the
current touchscreen mode. Backlighting
provides ease of use in low light
Speaker: Provides user feedback as
buttons are pressed or monitored
events occur.
Volume Knob: TLP 700 models only You can configure this knob for simple
and fast volume control.
Motion Sensor: TLP 700 models only
- Awakens panel when in power-saving
sleep mode .
Introducing touchlink
Auto Dimming Sensor: Automatically
adjusts the screen’s brightness according
to the room lighting.
Ethernet Control Capability - Allows for
management, monitoring, and control of
up to six Ethernet-enabled products.
IPL 250 Ethernet Control Processor
Ready-to-Use Touchscreen Templates
Unlike MediaLink Controllers, TouchLink
touchpanels require a separate control
processor with device control ports.
The IPL 250 is an Ethernet control
processor that works together with a
TouchLink panel to create a configurable
touchpanel control system. The processor
communicates with the TouchLink
touchpanel over Ethernet, rather than
a proprietary network or bus protocol,
and features a variety of control ports
for interfacing with displays, switchers,
sources, screen controllers, lighting
systems, and many other devices.
Extron GUI Configurator is an intuitive
design tool that makes creating
and maintaining Extron TouchLink™
touchscreen user interfaces easy, even for
those without graphic design skills.
Getting started is fast and simple
with our ready-to-use, customizable,
predesigned application templates, or
start from scratch and build your own
layout using our comprehensive software.
Simply select the template that best
suits the application. In many cases, all
the input sources, display control, and
environmental settings are already in
place. Each template is fully developed
and includes complete, detailed
documentation of its application and
capabilities. If any modification is required,
GUI Configurator software’s user-friendly
drag-and-drop interface makes adding or
removing a source or other element
a snap.
Ready-To-Use Templates
The IPL 250 provides a full scope of
control capabilities, including:
Two bidirectional RS-232 serial ports
for controlling and monitoring projectors,
flat-panel displays, switchers, and other
serially controlled devices
Four independent, normally open
relays and four contact inputs for
monitoring and controlling projector lifts,
screen controls, lighting systems, window
shades, motion sensors, timers, and more.
Four IR ports for one-way control of
professional and consumer A/V source
devices, such as DVD players, VCRs,
tuners, and more.
GUI Configurator includes ready-touse templates created for the following
popular A/V system applications:
TouchLink 7" Wall Mount Touchpanel
The TLP 700MV is designed for mounting on a
lectern or wall and features a 7" touchscreen, ten
field-labelable, backlit buttons, and a large volume
control knob.
TouchLink 7" Tabletop Touchpanel
The TLP 700TV is designed for tabletop use or
VESA mounting and features a 7" touchscreen,
ten field-labelable, backlit buttons, and a large
volume control knob.
• Single Display Rooms
• Dual Display Room
• Divisible Room
• Multi-Image System
• Video Conference Suite
...and more will be added to soon.
Our touchscreen design
templates are:
roadly Applicable – Our templates are
matched carefully to the most common
A/V applications installers and integrators
are likely to encounter.
• Intuitive to Use – Readily learned and
understood with clearly labeled buttons
and logical page flows.
TouchLink 3.5" Cable Cubby® Touchpanel
The TLP 350CV is designed for furniture mount
applications that require cable management and
features a 3.5" touchscreen, ten customizable
backlit buttons, and interior LED lighting.
continued on page 4
IntroducIng touchlInk
I n t r o d u c i n g To u c h l i n k C o n f i g u r a b l e To u c h p a n e l C o n t r o l S y s t e m s
— continued
Ready To Use Templates
Single Display room
Dual Display room
• Easy to Edit – The object appearance
properties of every GUI element is easily
changeable, including shape, color,
label, and operation.
Since system designs vary, our
templates can be customized to suit the
specific needs of any application. GUI
Configurator’s intuitive design environment
enables a wide variety of design choices
for buttons, colors, logos, font styles,
and more.
Start From Scratch and Design Your
Own Layout
A wide array of design options enables
users to develop their own touchscreen
layouts to meet almost any system
GUI Configurator software’s resource
library of shapes, graphics, and sounds
provide a wide variety of choices
Video Conference Suite
Multi-Image System
ExtroNews 20.2 | Summer 2009
Divisible room
for design of pages, popup pages,
multistate buttons, 3D effects, video
windows, dynamic text, and more.
In addition, users can import their
own images or audio files into GUI
Configurator and use the resource
management tool to provide further
customization capabilities. The Designer
Window displays the layout design in
progress, so the changes can be seen
while the customization occurs.
Upload Your Finished Design To The
TouchLink Panel
Once the touchscreen layout design is
completed, the process for uploading the
design files to a TouchLink touchpanel
is simple. GUI Configurator connects to
one or more TouchLink panels over the
network for uploading the project layout
data. In addition, project data can be
saved to disk for future use.
Familiar System Configuration Process
With Global Configurator Software
Anyone familiar with configuring
MediaLink® or IP Link® Systems using
Extron Global Configurator software will
be comfortable installing and configuring
a TouchLink system. With no code to
write and no need for graphic design
skills, anyone can develop and deploy a
sophisticated, feature-rich, TouchLink A/V
control system.
Global Configurator is a simple-to-use,
yet comprehensive software application
that allows non-programmers to configure
a wide range of Extron IP Link-enabled
products, including TouchLink Systems.
It provides an integrated environment
for defining A/V control and monitoring
system functionality from an easy-to-use
graphical user interface.
IntroducIng touchlInk
It's simple enough to be used for
configuring a single room controller, yet
powerful enough to facilitate building
a Web-based A/V resource management
and remote monitoring system for
hundreds of A/V devices in multiple
Global Configurator's intuitive, stepby-step menus walk the user through
the process of configuring a TouchLink
Panel’s functions to the IPL 250
controller. For large installations with
IP-enabled systems, Global Configurator
guides the user through adding new
TouchLink Systems to the network,
organizing them in a logical fashion,
configuring IP and security settings, and
defining monitoring and
alert parameters.
Configuration changes may be
required when a display or source
device is replaced or additional
functionality is desired.
With Global Configurator, modifying
a configuration is fast and easy. The
program creates and stores unique
configuration files which can be recalled
whenever changes are required.
Modifying a configuration is as simple
as opening the configuration file, making
the necessary changes, and uploading
the new configuration and device
drivers. This feature is also useful for
replicating "cookie cutter" systems with
only a few mouse clicks.
Thousands of Extron Certified
Device Drivers
Extron maintains thousands of serial and
IR drivers for devices from dozens of
manufacturers. Each driver was written
and reviewed by Extron engineers and
our Certified drivers have been tested
with at least one of the supported
products. The Extron Web site features
an easy-to-use online driver filter that
TouchLink touchpanels enable integrators to deploy a fully configurable touchscreen control interface with
a sophisticated, high tech appearance.
enables installers and system integrators
to select and download the appropriate
driver files for their A/V system.
Powerful A/V System Management
You can proactively manage, monitor, and
support TouchLink Systems right alongside
MediaLink and IP Link systems using
the award-winning Extron GlobalViewer
Enterprise software. GlobalViewer
Enterprise is the next step up for managing
larger A/V installations. It provides an easy
upgrade path for existing users of the Free
GlobalViewer Web application.
Compatible with most Web browsers,
GlobalViewer Enterprise provides enhanced
help desk functionality, enterprise-wide
scheduling and monitoring, and timestamped A/V system data collection
for reporting. Built on Microsoft® .NET®
technology, GlobalViewer Enterprise
integrates with third-party facility scheduling
software for viewing room availability and
managing meeting schedules.
A New Way to Think About
Touchpanel Control Systems
Up to now, deploying touchpanel A/V
control systems, has remained in a
different category from more common
pushbutton control panels. While
touchpanel systems are generally more
elegant, they have been considered
more complex, more costly, and more
difficult to support than their pushbutton
counterparts, due mostly to the
programming skills needed for integration.
Thanks to Extron TouchLink, the first
fully configuration-based touchpanel
control system, the industry now has an
opportunity to view them in a whole
new light.
Additional Resources offers extensive additional
information and training on TouchLink
Systems, including:
• Spec sheets
• Brochures
• White papers
• Training videos
Also, our unique online TouchLink
Simulator lets you test drive each
touchpanel model, trying it out in various
types of presentation environments.
For more information, visit
conFIgurABle control sYsteMs
Configurable Control Systems
Advantages of the Extron Approach
hen it comes to implementing the control system portion of an A/V project, there are two distinct choices available:
configuration or programming. Extron IP Link® control processors, MediaLink® controllers, and now, TouchLink™
Touchpanels have all been designed from a configuration-based approach. For most applications, configurable systems
offer significant advantages over programmable systems, and provide benefits for consultants, integrators, end users,
and even programmers. The Extron configuration approach simplifies the development of powerful control systems that
are cost-effective over the life of the installation. Our library of thousands of Extron Certified device drivers, predesigned
application templates, comprehensive suite of software applications, and ongoing training and support, enable system
designers to easily and quickly deploy powerful control systems that are reliable, sustainable, and profitable.
For most applications, configurable control systems offer significant advantages over programmed control systems, and provide benefits for consultants,
integrators, end users, and even programmers.
The History of Configurable Control
Extron has been delivering fully
configurable control systems for more
than a decade. System switchers and A/V
system controllers such as the MediaLink
MLC 206, led the market in being easy
to configure and flexible enough to meet
many of the typical applications for which
they were designed.
products alongside the System 5 IP
and MediaLink MLC 226 IP defined the
next generation of Extron configurable
control systems. These products were
designed for specific applications and
needs of the educational and corporate
markets. Alongside these products, Extron
developed Global Configurator software
to make the configuration process easy,
straightforward, and repeatable.
The introduction of the IP Link platform
of Ethernet based control products
enabled the configurable control system
to move to the next level of sophistication.
The development of the IPL series of
While the implementation of a touchpanel
control system has been historically
considered difficult, time consuming,
and costly, the new Extron TouchLink™
system simplifies the process and offers
ExtroNews 20.2 | Summer 2009
both extensive flexibility and powerful
control features. The fully configurable
TouchLink control system also makes for
a very cost-effective alternative to a similar
programmed touchpanel solution.
Fewer Steps in the Process
The configurable control system concept
started with a few main objectives and
expanded to encompass the many
growing requirements of typical audio
visual installations. One objective of the
configurable solutions available from Extron
is to make the most common system
configuration tasks easy to accomplish
in as few steps as possible. One way
conFIgurABle control sYsteMs
Global Configurator 3.0 is the unified configuration platform for Extron configurable control systems, which include IP Link®,
MediaLink®, and TouchLink™
we’ve achieved this objective is through a
standardized approach to the development
of device drivers.
Extron Certified Device Drivers
At the core of our configurable solution is
a large and comprehensive database of
pre-developed, tested, and documented
device drivers. Standardization of the
device driver creation is critical to the
implementation of configuration software
features such as creating cookie cutter
systems, making drivers easy to replace,
and deploying a configuration generated,
Web-based resource management system.
No Programming Skills Required
Another objective of configurable control
systems is to make implementation and
support of these systems attainable by
most entry level technical people. In a few
hours of hands-on training, A/V support
personnel can be instructed on how to
maintain and update their systems, as in
the case of a video projector that needs
to be replaced due to obsolescence.
Configurable systems allow focus to be
applied to the environment’s requirements
and not the design of the program that will
operate the system.
The key to making configuration tasks
easy to accomplish by even entry level
personnel has been the development
of Extron Global Configurator software
as a unified tool for configuring a wide
range of Extron control systems. Global
Configurator offers a drag-and-drop
interface, reduced training requirements,
and zero control system debugging. It was
developed as a single unified software
platform for all configurable controllers
in the Extron product line. Once you are
familiar with configuring one controller type,
all but the most complex and demanding
A/V control applications are easy to
accomplish in just a few steps.
Enabling more people to create and
maintain the A/V control system
functionality lowers the cost of the initial
installation, as well as ongoing support
costs for the life of the products.
continued on page 8
conFIgurABle control sYsteMs
Configurable Control Systems
Who Benefits From a Configurable
The short answer: Everyone. Whether
you are an end user, consultant, system
integrator, or even an A/V programmer, you
can take advantage of the many benefits of
a configuration-based control system.
Configurable control systems save
time: Consultants and system integrators
alike benefit when control solutions can be
developed in quickly. Faster implementation
and integration allows for more cost effective
and profitable system designs. Sometimes
this is the difference between the customer
deciding to implement the system or cut
it from their budget. Furthermore, since a
configured system can be reliably installed
in a shorter time, systems can be installed
that offer cost savings for the end user, and
higher profits for the system integrator.
Configurable control systems cost
less to own and operate: The cost of
ownership of a system is dictated by the
initial cost plus the maintenance cost
as the system ages. With configuration
software, tasks such as controller setup,
system monitoring, scheduling, and Web
deployment always require only a few point
and click operations. Knowing this makes
initial deployment costs easy to estimate
and control.
System devices, such as projectors,
displays, and DVD players, have finite life
spans, after which they need to be replaced.
The time required to make control system
changes is minimized through configuration
and this translates into lower costs incurred
by the end user.
Consistent operation from room to
room: End users will find that their Extron
A/V control systems operate consistently
from room to room, and building to building.
This reduces the time required to educate
users on the operation of systems that
have been implemented by different system
ExtroNews 20.2 | Summer 2009
— continued
So how do A/V system programmers benefit
from the adoption of configured systems?
It frees them up to focus on more complex
jobs and provides an opportunity for them
to contribute their system expertise to the
development of large numbers of configured
Programmers typically have a clear
understanding of how all the equipment in
the system works together. This in-depth
knowledge is what makes them invaluable
for many complex, one-of-a-kind, “do
everything” types of control systems.
For many applications, programmers can
combine their in-depth system knowledge
with configuration tools to help system
integrators develop and deliver multiple
identical room control systems. These
configured systems can be then reliably
replicated to support installations ranging
from 10 to 1,000+ rooms. Asking a
programmer not to program might seem
like blasphemy, but in many situations, the
combination of a talented programmer and
a fully configurable system can produce
astounding results.
What About Source Code?
With configurable control systems
from Extron, there is no source code.
Configuration files that are stored in the
controller prevent the hidden nightmare of
“where’s my source code?” that can occur
when a system change needs to be made
6, 12, 18 months or more after the initial
installation. Global Configurator enables
the extraction of the system configuration
from all systems. There are no delays in
getting modifications done and no learning
curve for someone who has used the
software previously.
Easy-to-Use Configuration Tools
The Extron configurable system uses many
common software conventions making it
much easier for others to learn and master.
This means system integrators have
access to a larger pool of resources from
which to draw upon. Building configuration
capability in-house ensures that you have
full control over your customer’s needs and
sense of urgency.
Extron has implemented a standardized
approach to the creation of the thousands
of existing device drivers. In addition to
including the control of the device, each
driver includes a communication sheet
that completely describes the supported
capabilities, including how the control port
hardware should be wired to the device.
In addition, once a system is configured it
can be replicated for similar rooms.
Managing a facility that has many
configured rooms is facilitated by Free
GlobalViewer, a Web-based A/V resource
management application, which is
automatically generated based on the
system requirements and loaded to the
controllers. No additional steps or networkoriented setup are necessary.
Programmed solutions can be extremely
varied and as such, are much more
difficult to maintain. Configured systems
conversely are systematically consistent,
affording more repeatability and
maintainability, and reducing service calls
and maintenance costs.
The Final Analysis
With a configurable system design
approach, everyone wins:
• Systems are designed and deployed
• Variable development and troubleshooting
costs are significantly reduced
or eliminated
• Post-installation support can be easily
accomplished by field technicians.
There are many aspects of the configuration
approach that make it appealing and cost
effective. The introduction of the TouchLink
series of touchpanels, with ready-to-use
templates for common system applications,
is the world’s first truly configurable system
that can provide a high quality user interface
and control project costs at the same time.
conFIgurABle control sYsteMs
Powerful Control Without Programming
For more information, visit
Global Configurator
Anyone familiar with configuring MediaLink® or IP Link® systems using our free
Global Configurator software will be comfortable configuring a TouchLink System.
GuI Configurator
GUI Configurator software, makes designing full-color TouchLink touchscreen
interfaces easy, even for those who are not graphic designers.
Online resources offers information and training on TouchLink Systems, including
data sheets, brochures, white papers, training videos, and a unique TouchLink
Free GlobalViewer® and GlobalViewer® Enterprise
TouchLink Systems integrate seamlessly with Extron’s award-winning
GlobalViewer Enterprise and Free GlobalViewer software for complete A/V
resource monitoring, management, and control over a computer network.
By Casey Hall, Vice President North American Sales
New Training Courses and Online Tools We've Got You Covered
his is an exciting time at Extron. In addition to rolling out dozens of new products, we have been
busy enhancing our S3 Technical Institute by adding new courses, online training and installation
videos, and new Tech Tools. All of these changes are in response to direct customer requests, and
reinforce our commitment to uncompromising service, support, and solutions. Here's a sampling of
some of our new training courses and online videos, and Tech Tools available now or coming soon.
Instructor-Led Courses
Our School of A/V Technologies for
System Designers is being redesigned to
include exciting new courses including
an all-new Configurable Control Systems
course. This course will focus on Extron
Global Configurator and provide valuable
information and real-world system
configuration scenarios for MediaLink® and
our new TouchLink™ touchpanel control
systems. Also look for an all new Audio
Design course which will cover practical
audio designing for a variety of environments
and also provide an overview of our new
ProDSP™ advanced audio platform.
Within our Engineered Systems Technologies
School - formerly the Advanced School
of A/V Technology, we are offering all
new courses on digital video, fiber optics,
twisted pair, multi-image processing, and
an interactive audio course. The digital
video course will use the new Extron Digital
Design Guide as a foundation for covering
digital interfacing fundamentals, technical
challenges, and solutions. The multi-image
processing course will provide an overview
of video processing technologies and include
hands-on workstations for setting up and
configuring our WindoWall console software.
The audio course will allow you to see and
hear many of our audio solutions as well
as provide demonstrations and hands-on
training on our ProDSP™ audio platform.
New Installation Video for PoleVault
and VoiceLift
We've just added a new instructional
video to our online library. The enhanced
PoleVault and VoiceLift Installation Video
illustrates each step of the installation
process and demonstrates the skills and
tools necessary to successfully complete
a new PoleVault System and VoiceLift
installation in a typical classroom. This
video is available now from the Extron
Reseller Web site.
New How-To Videos
We have also created a number of online
How-To videos, scheduled to premiere at
InfoComm '09. These short instructional
videos will cover such subjects as cable
termination, skew adjustment, clocking &
phasing, levels & peaking, and more.
We'll Bring the Training to You
Even with seven global training centers,
it isn't always convenient to attend the
course you want. No problem; Extron offers
In-House Visits. Our Regional Application
Specialists can cater the course material to
your specific needs, then come directly to
you and deliver the training to one person or
an entire office.
New Tech Tools
We are also continually adding to our
online Tech Tools, and are pleased to
introduce the VoiceLift™ Microphone
Systems Configurator. This online, dragand-drop configuration utility allows
users to design VoiceLift Microphone
Systems to meet their specific needs.
Several other online configurators
are also available, including those for
PoleVault, SMX System MultiMatrix, the
ISM 824, and more.
Configurable Control Systems Training
ExtroNews 20.2 | Summer 2009
By Jeff Gibson, Vice President International Sales
Extron Institute Schools Now Open Throughout Asia
e are very pleased to announce that our three offices in Asia - Japan, China, and Singapore,
now offer full S3 Technical Institutes, staffed by highly-qualified, Extron professionals. As our
customer base in Asia broadened, requests poured in for the same types of Extron Institute Schools
offered in our Europe and US offices. We responded by equipping each office with state-of-the-art,
dedicated training facilities. Now, A/V professionals in Asia can experience Extron-quality training at
one of these new, convenient locations, or read below for information on Extron School On The Road
as well as our other off-site training resources.
Each of the Extron Asia offices offers the
following Technical Institute Schools:
• School of AV Technologies for
System Designers:
Designed to expand your existing
knowledge foundation of A/V
technology. Upon completion of this
two-day school, you will have gained
a complete working knowledge of
computer and digital video interfacing,
system switching, and matrix switching,
as well as the understanding of how
scalers are used to improve
A/V systems.
• Engineered Systems Technologies:
Formerly the Advanced School of A/V
Technologies - Here, accomplished
A/V professionals can gain insight into
more sophisticated A/V technologies,
system design concepts, system
troubleshooting, and problem avoidance
to ensure premium performance from
state-of-the-art systems.
• School of Global Configurator
IP Link & MediaLink:
Designed to provide A/V engineers
and technicians with the necessary
means to manage legacy systems,
structure a support hierarchy for
large campus applications, configure
Extron MediaLink® and IP Link® control
solutions, and add components to a
working system.
Extron School on the Road
Each of these new S3 Technical Institute
Schools offers A/V professionals
an opportunity to learn about new
technologies, brush up on fundamental
concepts, and work hands-on with the
latest Extron products. Extron Institute
Schools offer classroom training and
hands-on workshops for Extron resellers
and consultants, and are tailored to meet
specific objectives. In addition, Extron
schools provide Continuing Education
credits through the major industry
We also offer convenient alternatives to inclass learning, including distance learning
via videoconferencing, online computerbased training, and “just in time” training
via the Web.
Can’t make it to one of these new
Technical Institutes? We’ll bring the
training to you with Extron School On
The Road, where our team of training
professionals brings classroom and
hands-on learning to a city near you.
Extron School On The Road is very active
in Asia as well as Europe, the Middle East,
Australia, and the United States.
With these three new locations in Asia,
we now have seven global Technical
anaheim - California
raleigh - north Carolina
amersfoort – The netherlands
Tokyo – Japan
Shanghai – China
Dubai – uaE
For more details on the new and exciting
S3 Technical Institute enhancements,
including new courses and online tools,
see Casey Hall's Extron Hotline article on
page 10.
Our new, high-tech training classroom in our Singapore office
How a Tennessee Utility District Uses WindoWall™
to Improve Operations
wo years ago HB&TS, the Hillsboro, Burwood & Thompson’s Station Utility District, began the planning process for a
new command and control center. The utility district is charged with keeping drinking water safe for 6,300 customers
in Williamson County, TN. “The district wanted a dramatic look for its command and control center, and that, in itself,
meant they needed a display larger than could be done typically with LCDs or plasma screens,” says Tom Semmes, Design
Engineer with Multi-Media Solutions, designer and integrator for the project. “Therefore, it was decided early on that the
only way they could achieve this impact was with projection, and the Extron WindoWall™ was the natural solution.”
Design Goals: Multiple Sources, One
Large Screen
The WindoWall is a scalable multigraphic videowall processor system that
employs proven Extron video processing
technologies to deliver a fully optimized,
high quality video output. It is ideal for
the utility district for a number of reasons.
First, it gives them the widescreen
capability they need. “We wanted to
use the two projectors at their native
resolution and we wanted the input,
which was a map, to be the background
image. And we wanted it to be as large
as possible and at the highest resolution,”
Semmes says.
The command and control center uses
two WindoWall processors, two edgematched projectors, and a 60"x160"
screen to enable the display of two
1400x1050 images side by side. The
display background shows a map of the
county's equipment and water supply,
often the most important image, across
the entire screen. In addition to the
background image, each WindoWall
processor allows for the display of up to
four windows per projector, each of which
can show video, HDTV, or high resolution
computer-video content.
To ensure that vital information is available
at all times, the utility district had very
specific goals in mind for its A/V system.
First, the system had to fully support the
district’s SCADA, or Supervisory Control
ExtroNews 20.2 | Summer 2009
Operators at the command and control center need to see critical information at a glance, including a
topographic map and disaster- and weather-related news local TV stations.
and Data Acquisition system, which
continually monitors and reports the
condition of all utility district devices in the
field. In addition, they wanted a videowall
system that could handle a wide range
of video formats and enable operators to
see, at a glance, other critical information,
including a topographic map and disaster
and weather-related news from local TV
stations. With this information, the utility
district could then address any issues
identified, including equipment problems
and potentially dangerous conditions.
Finally, the district wanted a presentation
system that could support in-service
training materials from DVD and
other sources.
Because they would be using so many
different sources and signal types,
the district decided to use the Extron
CrossPoint 450 Plus 128 HVA UltraWideband Matrix Switcher [now the
CrossPoint Ultra 128] for all signal
routing, including audio, from the district’s
satellite television receivers and DVDVCR. The CrossPoint 450 Plus provides
the performance required to maintain
signal integrity with the demanding, high
resolution signals used in the command
and control center.
WindoWall Fits the Bill
“In a command and control center, when
you put something new up on a screen,
you don’t want to lose sight of what’s
already there,” Semmes says. “You might
have windows that display disaster or
weather-related items, another window
with the SCADA data, and another with a
map that shows the entire area covered
by the district. And that’s where the
Extron WindoWall has been so useful.
Each processor has four open windows in
addition to the full-screen background.”
With so many different sources and signal
types to manage, WindoWall's AutoImage function has streamlined system
operation and reduced set-up time for
the command and control center. With
Auto-Image, each WindowWall processor
automatically optimizes the settings for
each input signal, saving time and effort
when crisp, high resolution images
are needed.
System Setup and Configuration
The entire WindoWall installation, setup,
and configuration process was userfriendly, according to Semmes. During the
configuration phase, the intuitive Wizards
in the WindoWall Console software
guided the integrator with a step-bystep process, simplifying system layout
configurations. The Wizards provided
easy to understand instructions on setting
up the system, and enabled the integrator
to complete the entire configuration in
less than five minutes without any help.
In addition, the short SIS™ - Simple
Instruction Set command protocol
allowed for easy third-party control
and programming.
Various window presets were created for
recall by a third-party control system, and
the different layouts make it possible for
operators at the command and control
center to view sources collectively and at
the same time. This improves efficiency
and optimizes time, enabling quicker
responses by the operators.
WindoWall Console Software Virtual Canvas
Practical Room Layout
WindoWall Console Software
The command and control center has a
console with space for three operators.
The console faces the large screen, and
there are six additional 22" monitors on
the console itself, so that the operators
can view important information on the big
screen or on the monitors in the console.
The WindoWall is fully flexible, enabling the
operators to size and position each image
independently in any way they want.
WindoWall Console Software is the
user-friendly application designed
for fast, easy setup of the WindoWall
System. The software simplifies setup
with a series of intuitive Wizards
that take the user step-by-step
through the process of configuring
a videowall. A virtual canvas for
on-screen visualization enables the
user to size and position windows
just as they would be shown on
the videowall. Operation of the
WindowWall System is
further simplified with 100
customizable presets that enable
users to quickly save and recall
window configurations.
“We view this project as a total design,”
Semmes says. “Anyone could have put
in a few panels and equipment, but it
wouldn’t have the look, the feel, or the
capability that this room has. It really does
look like a command and control center.”
• Wizard-based graphical user
interface for videowall system setup and configuration of all input
sources and the matrix switcher to
be used in the system
• Brings WindoWall Processors and
matrix switcher together via TCP/IP
• Virtual canvas for on-screen
videowall visualization and dynamic
window placement and sizing
• 100 memory presets for videowall
layout configurations
The WindoWall is fully flexible, enabling the operators to size and position each image independently in
any way they want.
continued on page 14
H o w a Te n n e s s e e U t i l i t y D i s t r i c t U s e s W i n d o W a l l t o I m p r o v e O p e r a t i o n s
— continued
a pre-installation design review and
system optimization and customer training
following the installation, but prior to the
system going into full operation.
“The Product Commissioning Service was
essential,” Semmes says. “Extron has
been very helpful.”
Each window of the WindoWall can show video, hDTV, or high resolution computer-video content.
Plenty of Room for Growth
George Gates, CTS, Sales Engineer
for Multi-Media Solutions, says the A/V
system was designed for future growth.
The area served by the utility district is
growing rapidly, which means that the
utility district customer base is growing.
As the district expands, the fully scalable
WindoWall System can be expanded
as well. Because the WindoWall uses a
distributed video processing architecture,
dedicating one discrete, real-time
processor to each display, the district can
easily expand the WindoWall System to
support additional display requirements.
The WindoWall enables a wide variety of
display layouts from 1x2 to 3x4 and larger.
frame rate video in each window is ideal
for this type of surveillance application.
Product Commissioning Service
The Product Commissioning process
for the utility district took about a day
and a half, and included full integration
of third-party programming, testing, and
optimization of the display’s alignment
and color balance. “It was an enjoyable
experience that yielded a satisfied
integrator and end-user,” says Steve
Kolta, Systems Design Engineer at Extron.
Watkins adds that the utility district is very
happy with the WindoWall System, and
they are only beginning to explore the full
range of capabilities available to them.
Semmes feels that the Extron WindoWall
Product Commissioning Service was a
major benefit. This setup and calibration
service ensures optimum performance
in A/V presentation systems utilizing the
WindoWall System. The service includes
Troy Watkins, System Operator for the
utility district, says that because of its
mapping system, the command and
control center could eventually be used as
a war room where strategic decisions are
made in the event of a major emergency.
In addition, cameras will be installed on
all water towers and sites so operators at
the command and control center will be
able to view the actual tanks and water
pumps and be alerted when unauthorized
individuals have entered the area. The
WindoWall's ability to display real-time, full
WindoWall Console software includes a series of step-by-step Wizards that walk the installer through
the process necessary to expedite videowall system setup.
ExtroNews 20.2 | Summer 2009
MGP 464 a Winner at the Pinewood Derby
he 2009 Cub Scouts of America Pinewood Derby marked the 50th anniversary of this annual event held throughout
the nation. The derby offers Cub Scouts the opportunity to design, cut, paint, and assemble pinewood vehicles that
are pitted against others in a racing competition on a miniature racetrack. This year, Pack 727 of the Melinda Heights
Elementary School in Rancho Santa Margarita, California, sought to raise the bar by offering racing participants and
viewers a high-tech audiovisual experience that addressed some of the problems typically encountered in past races.
As a Cub Scout volunteer and active participant in helping stage the event, Paul Chrisope from Video Resources, knew
exactly what the race needed: a large screen display showcasing the race action from multiple viewing angles and real
time racing statistics powered by Extron’s MGP 464, a four window multi-graphic processor.
switcher. Early on, it became clear that
multiple cameras would be needed to
help the audience feel close to the action
without crowding around the racetrack.
The MGP 464's configurable inputs
allow the outputs of those cameras to be
combined on a single, large display. In this
particular case, three of these inputs were
routed from two S-video cameras and one
composite video camera. Each camera was
strategically positioned near the start line,
the length of the track, and the finish line.
The MGP 464 allows onlookers to watch the race from a distance through multiple camera angles
Watching the Race Without Disruptions
Choosing the MGP 464
One of the main challenges at the
Pinewood Derby is keeping attendees
from disrupting the racing event. A
room packed with excited Cub Scouts
craving derby action can quickly get
out of hand. Furthermore, crowds
showing up to cheer for racers only
adds to the excitement. As a result, a
number of distractions posed problems
during the racing event. “Hordes
of people would gather around the
racetrack, kick it inadvertently, and at
times, even spill food or drinks on the
track,” Chrisope says. “We wanted the
audience to have the ability to view
the race without disrupting the flow of
the event.”
As an A/V professional, Chrisope is
familiar with the Extron product line, so
the first issue was a matter of finding
the right product to address the issues.
In the end, he decided to use Extron’s
MGP 464. Its capabilities would allow the
audience to view the race at a distance
through multiple camera angles, and
create a racing experience that made the
audience and participants feel like they
were at a NASCAR event.
More Than Enough Inputs
The MGP 464 is a robust, high resolution
graphics processor with the ability to
combine four windows on a single display
through a built-in 19x4 input matrix
In addition, a laptop was used for a fourth
input to manually enter and display racing
times registered from an optical sensor
system placed on the racetrack. This
provided real time statistics on every heat of
the race, which allowed attendees to keep
track of the racers they were following.
Furthermore, 15 virtual video inputs on the
MGP 464 can accept composite video,
S-video, and component video sources.
One of these inputs was used for an
S-video DVD player that would occasionally
play clips of the movie, “Down and Derby”,
between races and during intermissions.
Chrisope wanted to use a moving digital
image as a presentation background,
which was not an issue since the MGP 464
contains a dedicated DVI input that displays
live, full-motion high resolution computer
or HDTV video. To create the feeling of a
professional racing environment, a waving
continued on page 16
MGP 464 a Winner at the Pinewood Derby
— continued
checkered flag was displayed on the screen
during the race. The MGP 464 also has
Graphic Still Store capabilities, which allow
a presenter to use screen captures of an
output or uploaded BMP image files as a
background to enhance a presentation.
The application required a screen that was
large enough for all viewers to see the
race. Chrisope used a 12.5-foot diagonal
rear projection screen driven by a projector
connected to the MGP 464’s RGB output.
Typically, from start to finish, a heat will last
roughly three seconds, so the MGP 464’s
ability to display four images at once gave
the audience multiple views of the race,
which they wouldn’t see if they were simply
standing near the track.
window helps the input source deliver
the best image quality without affecting
the processing for other windows or the
overall performance of the MGP 464.
Ease of Use
Customization Capabilities
Although Chrisope is an A/V
professional, this was his first time using
the MGP 464 and operating the device
did not require any specialized training.
“One of the reasons I chose the MGP
464 is because of its user-friendliness,”
Chrisope notes. “Anybody can operate
the MGP 464 with little training.”
Chrisope also took advantage of the
MGP 464’s full window customization
capabilities. The processor can create
picture-in-picture window layouts with
the ability to size each window and
position it anywhere on the display. The
image displayed within each window
can be sized, panned, cropped, and
adjusted for contrast, brightness, color,
tint, and other image characteristics.
Furthermore, he could add a color
border and even a caption to the
window and prioritize its order if multiple
windows need to be overlapped.
Also, when moving between windows,
he could apply different transition
effects such as dissolve and wipe, or
Chrisope configured the MGP 464
prior to the event, but even that task
was not too complicated. The AutoImage™ feature on the MGP 464 allows
automatic image optimization for the
incoming video signals when scaling
them to the projector’s resolution.
Dedicated video scaling for each
Configuring and operating the MGP 464 did not require any special training
The MGP 464 gave the derby a look and feel that was similar to a professional racing event
ExtroNews 20.2 | Summer 2009
incorporate simple cuts for a smooth
and fluid presentation. Window layouts
could be saved as presets and recalled
at a later time. When Chrisope wasn’t
using the four window layout, he could
revert to a single window layout to
display the racing results.
At the event, the MGP 464 was placed
on a folding table that served as a
makeshift workstation for Chrisope.
He was also able to view the action
locally while operating the MGP 464 on
a computer monitor connected to the
MGP’s DVI output. A front panel security
lockout kept curious Cub Scouts from
changing any settings on the MPG 464.
MGP 464 Sets the Standard
Chrisope received many compliments
related to the A/V setup. “Kids,
parents, other Cubmasters, and
executives at the district level praised
the A/V experience that the MGP 464
helped bring,” he says. “It felt like an
actual professional racing event, and
the race went on smoothly without
any crowd interference.” Looking
ahead to the 2010 Pinewood Derby,
Chrisope plans to use the MGP 464
again. With the introduction of the
new MGP 464 HD-SDI, the ability to
use HD-SDI for camera and projector
connections is an enticing thought.
VoiceLift® Microphone Systems
Install Voice Amplification Now,
Upgrade to a Complete Polevault® A/V System Later
nvestments in classroom A/V technology can be shown to produce significant returns in both long-term
cost savings and academic achievement. Unfortunately, a school’s technology wish list can exceed available funding,
particularly during a recession. So, is there a cost-effective way to immediately make the learning environment a richer,
more meaningful experience for a child, while also providing a platform to build on for the future? Yes. The answer lies in
the Extron VoiceLift Microphone System, which enables you to start with voice amplification now and add future upgrades
later for completely integrated A/V switching, control and voice amplification for the classroom.
commonly referred to as the MARRS
Project, have identified the benefits
of sound field systems. The rationale
underlying sound field systems is very
simple: How well children hear a teacher
affects how well they learn. The more they
can hear, and the less they have to strain
and guess, the better chance they will
have of learning.
The award-winning VoiceLift Microphone System enables the creation of a "sound field" that allows a
teacher's voice to be heard clearly throughout the classroom.
When You Have to Make a Choice
In the capable hands of a dynamic
teacher, there are several A/V
technologies that have been proven
to engage students in the learning
experience. These technologies fall into
two major categories:
• Video, such as a projector, DVD player,
computer, and document camera that
are available and easy to use, and
• Voice amplification that enables every
student to hear the teacher’s voice.
Implementation of these technology
categories in the classroom can now be
accomplished in a two-step process,
thanks to the award-winning Extron
VoiceLift Microphone System. This
system creates what is known as a
"sound field" that allows a teacher's voice
to be heard clearly and more effectively
throughout the classroom.
What is a Sound Field?
A sound field is the area within a
classroom where the teacher’s voice
is distributed at a consistent level. This
sound field is created by a classroom
sound system specifically designed to
slightly amplify the teacher’s voice using a
microphone, audio amplifier, and speakers
placed strategically throughout the room.
The key to success is not simply
amplification or voice level, but increased
intelligibility with equal voice level for
each student. The purpose of the
soundfield system is to ensure that the
teacher’s voice is clearly audible above
the background sounds at all instructional
locations within the room. Students in the
back row, and throughout the class, need
to hear as well as those in the front row.
To achieve this goal, effective sound field
systems must accomplish the following:
• Raise the level of the teacher’s voice
to 15dB above classroom background
• Distribute sound evenly to each student
throughout the entire classroom by
using multiple speakers
• Provide superior audio performance in
frequencies associated with the human
voice and full-range reproduction of
program audio
• Minimize distorted sound
Several studies, such as the Mainstream
Amplification Resource Room Study,
continued on page 18
Vo i c e L i f t ® M i c r o p h o n e S y s t e m s
— continued
Integrated Classroom A/V Systems
Extron VoiceLift®
Extron PoleVault®
VoiceLift receiver
PVS 305 Sa
VoiceLift Pendant
Computer Input
FF 120
Flat Field™
VCr/DVD Input
MediaLink Controller
VoiceLift Desktop
Charging Station
Projector Mounting hardware
*A/V Sources
Combo Player
*Projector, DVD/VCr, and Laptop are not included and must be ordered separately.
Benefits for Students and Teachers
Studies show that significant gains
in student achievement and teacher
effectiveness can be made by simply
ensuring that the teacher can be heard.
According to research, even students
with normal hearing ability benefit from
the use of a voice amplification system.
Creating a learning environment where the
teacher can be heard is especially critical
for children in the lower grades. These
ExtroNews 20.2 | Summer 2009
students are often engaged in activities
that specifically focus on speech and
sound recognition. Young, inexperienced
learners do not develop the ability to adjust
their hearing in noisy conditions until they
are 13-15 years old. For children, the
teacher’s voice needs to be approximately
15 decibels louder than the background
noise in the classroom for high speech
intelligibility. This decibel difference is
called the Signal-to-Noise Ratio - SNR.
Comparatively, adults only require an SNR
of 4 to 6 decibels. Research also shows
that English as a Second Language - ESL
learners need a greater SNR than those
whose native language is English.
In addition, sound field voice amplification
systems enable teachers to spend the
day speaking at a natural level, which
significantly reduces voice strain and
vocal fatigue.
Fewer elementary
students referred to
special education
Higher scores on the
Stanford Achievement
Test, including reading,
language, math, science,
and social studies subtests
Higher scores on
Oregon’s Technology
Enhanced Student
Achievement test
Increase in literacy
test scores
- Trost Amplification Study, Canby School District, Canby, Oregon, 2004
results of studies include:
• Teacher absences due to vocal strain in
amplified classrooms decreased from
15 percent to an average of 3 percent in
one year.
• Students in amplified elementary
classrooms in Iowa displayed an average
of 17 percent increase in overall on-task
behavior. Students were found to be less
distracted in amplified classrooms and
required less redirection by the teacher.
• Studies have also shown that teachers
who use classroom amplification systems
enjoy virtually unlimited freedom to move
around the classroom while maintaining a
stable acoustic environment.
VoiceLift® Microphone Systems
VoiceLift Microphone Systems are
complete sound field voice amplification
systems for any classroom. The
VLS 1000 and VLS 2000 include all of
the components necessary for a complete
VoiceLift sound field system, including
microphone, receiver, amplifier, speakers,
and cables.
Infrared Transmission
The VoiceLift Microphone System uses
infrared signals for transmitting the
teacher's voice. Infrared microphone
technology offers clear advantages
over systems that use radio frequency,
since infrared signals do not pass
through walls and are not subject to
RF interference. The VoiceLift pendant
microphone runs all day on a single,
rechargeable or standard alkaline AA
battery and features easily accessible
controls for volume and power/mute.
An auxiliary input is also included
for use with an MP3 player or other
audio source, along with an auxiliary
microphone input for use with an
optional lapel microphone. Up to two
microphones can be supported per
classroom. The desktop charging station
charges two microphones and protects
them when not in use. The VoiceLift
Microphone System is designed and
manufactured by Extron Electronics and
includes a three-year parts and
labor warranty.
Patent-Pending Flat Field™ Speakers
The Extron FF 120 speakers included
with VoiceLift Microphone Systems are
full-range sound field speakers that
feature Extron proprietary Flat Field
technology. Flat Field technology allows
the FF 120 to reduce beaming of mid
and high frequencies directly under the
speaker, delivering consistent sound
levels across the listening area to
each student.
The FF120 offers an extraordinarily wide
dispersion area of 170 degrees, which
provides a very wide room coverage
pattern. This is especially important for
rooms with low ceilings.
With the combination of Flat Field
Technology and wide dispersion area,
only two FF120 speakers are required in a
standard classroom, as opposed to four
or more traditional ceiling speakers.
Easily Upgradeable to a Complete
Classroom A/V System
Extron is the only manufacturer who
offers two upgrade paths to completely
integrated A/V switching, control and voice
amplification for the classroom — with no
duplication or replacement of equipment.
So, your technology investments provide
not only the critical benefits needed
today, but also a foundation for enhancing
the system by simply adding selected
components. Extron VoiceLift and
PoleVault Systems allow you to make full
use of your current equipment while also
enabling you to take advantage of future
innovations in classroom technology.
VoiceLift Systems provide a seamless
upgrade path to integrated audio, video
and control in the classroom, making it
easy to add multimedia capability in the
future. At the heart of the system is the
PVS 305SA which is an audio amplifier
that also includes video switching
capabilities. Simply add PoleVault input
wallplates, a MediaLink controller, a
projector, and A/V sources for a complete,
easy-to-use classroom A/V system.
For a detailed description of the research
related to classroom sound field systems
and the proven benefits they provide
for both students and teachers, you
can download a free copy of the Extron
white paper entitled “Classroom Sound
Field Amplification: An Introduction” at
Digital Video for Pro A/V Integration
he A/V industry is currently in the midst of a significant transition, from analog video to digital video technologies and
applications. Every day, system designers face the challenge of integrating digital and analog video signals into new
and previously-installed A/V systems. As digital video is associated with the cutting edge in A/V technology, there is an
increasing desire by integrators and their customers to incorporate digital video into their systems. A wide array of digital
video ports, including DVI, HDMI, DisplayPort, and HD-SDI, are present in some form on virtually every new component
found in the market today. In addition, there is a very large installed base of analog hardware, as well as content, which
must be kept viable even within new system designs. For the foreseeable future, then, most presentation environments
will require mix of analog and digital video products and technologies.
segments, DVI has been an established
format since 1999. Continual evolution
within the computer, broadcast, and
now consumer electronics industries has
brought digital signal connectivity to the
forefront with the introduction of two,
newer digital video standards – HDMI for
consumer products and DisplayPort for
computers and related technologies.
LCD Monitor with Digital Inputs
Digital Video-It’s More Than Just HDMI
Although the DTV digital transition is
currently headline news, digital video is
not new to the professional A/V industry.
The broadcast, teleproduction, and
rental/staging segments adopted serial
digital video, SDI, more than 20 years
ago, and HD-SDI has been in use for
more than a decade now. In the medical,
visualization, and computer graphics
The prevalence of these various digital
signal formats presents opportunities
as well as challenges for integration
of professional A/V systems. DVI and
DisplayPort are common to PCs and
laptops, and are standard on many
professional displays and high-end
projectors. HDMI is primarily found on
HDTV-capable products such as Bluray Disc players, game consoles, and
satellite and cable DVRs and receivers.
While designed for consumer and
residential applications, some HDMI-
equipped products are now being
utilized in commercial applications as
well. High definition digital video has also
found its way into many applications
beyond the broadcast studio as a
means to capture, distribute, and display
high definition content, extending into
to house of worship and rental and
staging environments. Just about every
display available today has some type
of digital video capability. Whether it’s
a desktop PC display, ceiling-mounted
Computer System with Digital Outputs
Digital Video Formats Commonly Integrated in Professional A/V Systems
ExtroNews 20.2 | Summer 2009
Digital Transmission Can Achieve Perfect Signal Reconstruction
Digital Source Device
Digital Display Device
digital video
1 0 1 0
Digital video at
serializer output
1 0 1 0
At deserializer input,
distortions caused by
cabling, etc can readily be
corrected by practical means
a digital infrastructure can be designed to accommodate the high resolutions commonly found today,
while also providing support for higher resolutions introduced in the future.
projector, or a large flat-panel LCD on
a wall, chances are that a DVI, HDMI,
or DisplayPort connector is available
to accept incoming signals from digital
source devices.
Why Digital?
The implementation of digital A/V
technologies brings the promise of
several distinct advantages over analog
technologies. First, for the manufacturers
of computers and displays, there is the
potential of removing a considerable
amount of processing circuitry from a
device. Since signals are already digital
within the electronics of virtually all A/V
products, most if not all analog-to-digital
and/or digital-to-analog conversion
can be eliminated, resulting in lower
manufacturing costs and allowing for
network operations centers often use a fully digital signal distribution architecture to deliver high quality,
high resolution images.
more competitive pricing. Second, in
comparison to analog-based devices and
systems, digital signals are by nature,
lossless, enabling the distribution of
pixel-perfect and consistent, pristine
quality images while reducing the
time and effort required for system
and display set-up (see Figure 1-1).
Finally, a digital infrastructure can be
designed to accommodate the high
resolutions commonly found today, such
as 1920x1200 and HDTV 1080p, and
provide support for the higher rates on
the horizon.
Making the Choice – Analog, Digital,
or Both?
Part and parcel of any transition are
uncertainty, the fear of the unknown
and desire to look for expert help and
assistance in making decisions. In your
role as an A/V IT manager, consultant or
A/V system integrator, your customers are
depending on you to help them make the
best choices. In the face of a wide array
of products and disparate technologies,
customers want advice during the design
and implementation phases to ensure that
A/V systems meet their requirements for
functionality and performance, stay within
budget and, ideally, provide for future
growth and further changes in technology.
Complicating the decision is the
knowledge that, while new A/V
technologies and signal types are
continually introduced, not all of them
survive and the ones that do generally
don't immediately replace the legacy
formats. For example, many new
digital source devices incorporate an
assortment of analog video outputs,
including composite video, S-video, and
component video. Correspondingly, most
new digital displays are still equipped with
analog inputs. You might ask “why do
manufacturers go to the extra effort, and
additional expense, to provide a variety of
connectors on their products?” In a
word, compatibility.
continued on page 22
Digital Video for Pro A/V Integration
Most manufacturers realize that sources
and displays are rarely replaced at the
same time. New sources, such as Blu-ray
Disc players and higher-end laptop PCs,
need to maintain compatibility with older
displays. New, high-resolution flat panel
displays and projectors, on the other
hand, need to remain compatible with
older sources, such as VHS recorders and
DVD players that are retained for use with
legacy content.
System designs for typical training and
presentation facilities, therefore, very often
accommodate a hybrid mix of analog
and digital capabilities, providing support
for legacy analog video formats while
incorporating newer signal types such
as DVI, HDMI, DisplayPort and, in some
cases, HD-SDI.
To Get the Right Answer,
Ask the Right Question
The first question to be answered, then,
is the most difficult, as it goes right to the
core of the transition. Should you:
• Stick with a tried-and-true analog design
for the time being?
• Build an digital/analog hybrid system
that incorporates a mix of technologies?
• Or, build tomorrow’s system today with
an all-digital design and some provision
for legacy analog products?
— continued
The System 208 D Supports digital
and analog signals
The answer, as with so many decisions
and choices to be made, is “It depends.”
Some systems are likely to remain
predominantly analog for some time,
with signal converters added as needed
to accommodate new digital displays or
source devices. For example, technology
budgets for K-12 classrooms typically
do not allow the wholesale upgrade of a
media system simply to accommodate
a new technology. Integrating a new,
HDMI-equipped playback source,
however, may require nothing more than
the appropriate digital extender and a
direct connection to the digital input on
the projector.
Others, such as in university lecture
halls and corporate boardrooms, are
beginning to incorporate digital video
technologies on a broader, more
systematic scale to accommodate the
continuously evolving needs for digital
media presentations while maintaining
compatibility with existing stores of
analog content and playback equipment.
Digital input capability can be added
by changing out the central switcher or
scaler to one that accepts analog and
digital signals; conversely, digital displays
can be accommodated through the use
of a switcher or scaler that outputs digital
Finally, specialized applications such
as visualization, simulation, military
and medical imaging, and command
and control, are adopting a fully
digital approach that can deliver
uncompromised, very high quality, very
high resolution images – one of the major
benefits of digital video. These system
designs are based around an all-digital
switcher or matrix switcher, with any
legacy analog sources accommodated
through the use of an analog-to-digital
The bottom line is that, just as video
replaced motion picture film and
DVDs replaced VHS cassettes, digital
technology in one or more forms
will replace analog in the majority of
applications over time. Typical corporate
and educational presentation systems will
move to a fully digital design in the future;
for the time being, however, a hybrid
system design that supports both analog
and digital signals takes into account
a wide range of presentation needs
College/university Classroom
ExtroNews 20.2 | Summer 2009
and technologies and, in the long run,
is the most prudent and cost-effective
Matching Technology to Need
Before undertaking a system design,
full knowledge of the customer’s needs
and expectations are necessary. Once
the primary question – analog, digital, or
both? – has been answered, many more
questions remain to be asked.
• Is there a requirement for interoperability
between digital and analog components?
Depending on the source content, this
may not be feasible due to digital rights
management such as HDCP.
• Is this an upgrade to an existing system?
If so, is there a need to support legacy
devices while providing the flexibility to
address future growth capability? System
longevity is also a key consideration in
determining the appropriate product
• Is the system expected to span a
technology life of many years? If so,
perhaps an all-digital infrastructure
should be considered to support the
continued evolution of video resolutions.
System scope and size also determine
operational practicality.
Understanding the true operational
requirements of any system during the
design phase will help control potential
cost overruns later. For example, if there
are HDCP requirements, does protected
content have to be viewable on all displays
within the system, or only in a few,
select locations? Having an operational
understanding of a system will go a long
way in meeting the needs as well as the
budget of the customer.
Going the Distance
A/V professionals face three primary
challenges in the handling of digital signals
and the management of their distribution
to ensure robust, reliable operation. The
first is to maintain full signal integrity from
source to destination. Digital video signals
are considerably different in comparison to
analog. Digital video signals do not degrade
linearly as with analog video. For analog
signals, the effects of cable-related losses
worsen gradually with cable length, but
for digital signals the impact is usually far
more noticeable and abrupt, with sparkles,
flashing images, or complete image loss
altogether, as cable length increases
beyond a “digital cliff” threshold.
Technologies such as DVI, HDMI, and
DisplayPort are primarily designed for short,
point-to-point connections, for example
from a computer to a desktop monitor, or
from a Blu-ray Disc player to a flat panel
television. Distances in these applications
are relatively short and, in light of the very
high data rates involved and a desire to
Digital Signal Conditioning
For DVI, HDMI, and DisplayPort, the proper “shape” of the RGB channels, also known as the “eye” pattern, is critical in ensuring proper image display.
Losses in these channels will result in “sparkles” on-screen, or a complete loss of the image. They are attributable to long cable lengths, poor quality
cables and terminations, and even certain source devices which output substandard digital video signals.
Many Extron digital video products feature input cable equalization, which actively conditions incoming signals, applying equalization to help reshape
and restore RGB channels to proper levels. The clock channel is also regenerated to provide proper RGB channel alignment. As shown below, a
compromised source-generated DVI signal is significantly improved when Extron signal conditioning is applied. Input cable equalization reshapes and
restores the “eye” patterns to ensure high quality images at the display.
Without Extron Input Cable Equalization
Direct DVI output from a source device. The signal quality is poor, and
the "eye" pattern is significantly distorted.
With Extron Input cable Equalization
The same DVI output after Extron signal conditioning is applied. The
"eye" pattern is fully restored.
continued on page 24
Digital Video for Pro A/V Integration
— continued
through conduit, digital signals can be
converted and distributed using standard,
shielded Category cable, or with fiber
optic technologies.
OK, sending
video to fit
your format.
EDID Minder
OK, here is my
native resolution
and vertical
refresh rate.
EDID Minder
EDID Minder
In digital video connections, the source relays EDID - Extended Display Identification Data to a display.
reduce cost and power consumption,
digital source devices can rarely drive a
signal more than a few feet. Use of high
quality, high performance cables can
help to a degree and, in some cases, can
provide for reliable signal transmission
up to 75 feet (25 meters) or so. While
suitable for most consumer applications,
this distance limitation can have a serious
effect on professional A/V installations
where signals must be routed many tens
if not hundreds of feet, from source to
destination. In order to compensate for this
limitation, signal conditioning products such
as equalizers can be used to recover and
restore a signal to distances up to 200 feet
(60 meters). For even longer cable runs,
or to accommodate the need to run cable
Professional Digital AV System with HDCP
Flat Panel
Flat Panel
Flat Panel
HDCP Source
HDCP Repeater
Flat Panel
When sending signals from multiple sources to multiple destinations, it is important to select a/V
integration products that are hDCP compliant and provide proper management of EDID communications.
ExtroNews 20.2 | Summer 2009
Second, there are very specific
performance and timing parameter
requirements that need to be maintained
throughout the entire signal path. For
example, in HDMI, the RGB video
lines, or channels, must be accurately
synchronized in order to be accurately
handled and reproduced throughout
the system. Terms such as equalization,
jitter, and reclocking in the digital world
replace the familiar level and peaking
terminology of the analog world. Signal
conditioning requirements for digital
signals are also different and must be
understood accordingly before designing
a system.
The third challenge in the successful
integration of digital A/V systems is to
be able to reliably switch, distribute,
and route signals. Some digital video
connections, including DVI, HDMI,
and DisplayPort, require two-way
communication between a source
and a display. If this communication
is interrupted, such as following a
disconnection, source switch, or signal
split, image display can be delayed, or
even lost completely. In many cases, the
content being used has a direct effect
on this communication as well. For
example, some early scaling DVD players
with HDMI output did not allow the use
of a repeater, and so the signal ended
at the input of the switcher and was not
passed through to the display.
Minding Your EDID
The two primary forms of two-way
communication are EDID- Extended Display
Identification Data and DRM - Digital Rights
Management. Both are extremely important
aspects of digital signal formats that can
significantly impact system reliability if not
properly accommodated and implemented.
In brief, EDID relates to the communication
of a display’s performance capabilities, such
as its native and supported resolutions, to
the source connected to it. EDID simplifies
system setup, in that the display “tells”
the source what pixel rate and resolution
it prefers, and the source then outputs the
optimum rate and resolution for the display,
generally resulting in perfect images that are
accurate on a pixel-for-pixel basis.
DRM is the protection of intellectual
property, of which HDCP - High-bandwidth
Digital Content Protection is the most widely
implemented. HDCP encryption is found
on commercially-recorded Blu-ray Discs,
high-definition digital satellite and cable
television, downloadable content, and more.
DRM is a primary concern in residential
applications, where content piracy is of
great concern to copyright holders, such
as motion picture studios, who stand to
lose millions of dollars if content is made
available through unauthorized replication.
For reliable presentation of protected
content within a residential entertainment
system, all relevant signal paths must be
fully HDCP compliant and conforming to
specific rules. This is relatively simple in the
typical one-to-one scenario where a Blu-ray
Disc player is connected directly to a flat
panel display, but both commercial and
residential A/V systems usually present the
necessity of sending signals from multiple
sources to multiple destinations (see Figure
1-2.) The primary difference, though,
between residential and professional A/V
systems, is the type of content that is being
distributed and displayed on a regular basis.
EDID 101 D
EDID Minder
HDCP in the Home
The impact of a Gender Changer
In a home environment, virtually all
content is derived from commercial,
copyrighted sources: movies on Blu-ray,
satellite broadcast, or streamed across
the Internet; games on Blu-ray, DVD, or
solid-state memory; and sports or other
live entertainment from pay-per-view
satellite or cable TV sources. In order to
protect the rights of the legitimate owners
of this content, digital rights management
in general, and HDCP in particular, will
become common.
Connecting two cables together for additional
length is a very common practice in analog video
and computer-video applications. The very high
resolutions and signal frequencies common in
digital video, however, are particularly susceptible
to interruptions and discontinuities along the
cable path.
HDCP in the Workplace
Content regularly used in professional
A/V applications, on the other hand, is
almost always locally generated. This
mostly includes the display of Microsoft
applications such as PowerPoint® or
Excel; institutionally-produced video
for training, demonstration, or sales
presentations; and custom or proprietary
software applications designed specifically
for institutional operations or commandand-control needs. Very rarely is the
content used in professional applications
encrypted with HDCP. Typically, rightsmanaged content is limited to the
occasional use of commercially-recorded
materials, for example when a sales
manager wishes to “rally the troops”
by playing a scene from his or her
favorite movie.
With digital signals, something as simple as
the insertion of a coupler or gender changer
between two cables can cause reflections which
seriously degrade the signal.
Consider what happens to a high resolution
digital signal when it’s passed through two 6'
(1.8 m) DVI cables connected female-to-female
Female to Female
6 ft. (1.8 m)
DVI Cable
6 ft. (1.8 m) DVI Cable
6 ft. (1.8 m)
DVI Cable
EDID 101 D
The resulting “eye” in the eye diagram collapses,
illustrating the signal degradation caused by the
insertion of the DVI coupler.
Applications Really Are Different
The key is to select digital products
based on the day-to-day requirements
of the application for which the system is
being designed. In all applications, proper
management of EDID communications
is a must. For residential applications,
compliance with a DRM scheme such as
HDCP is also mandatory for all system
components. And for commercial
applications, DRM must also be
considered within the system design to
allow the occasional use of commerciallygenerated content, but may not be
necessary for all system components or
When planning digital video systems, it is
important to take into consideration signal
interconnections and other design factors. Select
signal routing and distribution products, including
switchers, matrix switchers, and distribution
amplifiers, with features such as input cable
equalization, output reclocking, and other signal
conditioning capabilities that help accommodate
specific design challenges that may compromise
digital video signal integrity.
continued on page 26
Digital Video for Pro A/V Integration
for every signal path within the overall
system design.
Extron Digital Solutions
Professional A/V systems are highly
customized, each one designed to
meet a particular set of presentation
requirements. Overcoming the challenges
presented by various technologies,
customer needs, or environmental
parameters is the goal of all system
designers. The implementation of digital
signals does not change the fact that
projectors are mounted on ceilings with
cables routed over long distances or
run through conduit. Not every system
involves matrix switching capabilities, but
ExtroNews 20.2 | Summer 2009
— continued
almost every A/V system is designed to
accommodate the need to split or switch
signals, or provide the signal conversion
necessary to introduce analog signals into
a digital system, or vice versa.
Extron offers a wide variety of product
solutions that address the digital video
needs of all market segments. The
diversity of product lines brings flexibility
and choice, giving designers the
means to address systems at all levels.
Augmenting a legacy system with digital
inputs and distribution capability can
help keep upgrade costs down, while still
addressing customer needs. Mixed format
systems are easily achievable and can be
accommodated in small to large systems
with short to extremely long distance
requirements. An all-digital system
can be designed with various levels of
functionality, by utilizing products with
performance features that address the
exact needs required by the integrator.
how do you need to design your system today?
The Extron Digital Design Guide is a brand-new 82 page reference guide that provides comprehensive,
up-to-date coverage of the technical and design issues involved with the integration of digital video
signals into A/V systems for various markets. The material is presented in a clear and concise manner
that allows readers at all levels of sales and design to gain practical understanding of associated
formats, standards, and design approaches. The Digital Design Guide is highly solutions-based and
draws upon Extron’s many years of experience in the realm of distributing both analog and digital
signals. It draws together product solutions from all categories and presents them in a useful manner,
detailing system examples that are commonly encountered and designed on a daily basis.
Call your Extron Representative for a copy.
Additional Technical Resources
Understanding EDID White Paper
EDID - Extended Display Identification Data
Extron Understanding EDID
The EDID data structure is used extensively to electronically communicate display capabilities to attached
computer graphics cards and other source devices. This paper offers an in-depth look into the operational
process and pitfalls users may encounter when integrating EDID reliant source and display devices.
Download the Understanding EDID White Paper at
HDCP - A Technical Overview White Paper
hDCP - high-bandwidth Digital Content Protection
Extron HDCP - A Technical
HDCP - High-bandwidth Digital Content Protection is an encryption protocol for copy-protected video
content such as Blu-ray Disc and HD movie downloads. This article describes HDCP in detail, introducing
the components of an HDCP system – sources, repeaters, and sinks, as well as the three phases of the
HDCP protocol – authentication, encryption, and renewability.
Download the HDCP - A Technical Overview White Paper at
The ABCs of Digital Video Signals White Paper
understanding Digital Video Signals in the Professional a/V Industry
Extron The ABC's of Digital
Video Signals
Digital video signals are becoming widely prevalent throughout the A/V industry. They are considerably
different in comparison to traditional analog video signals, with specific performance and timing
requirements that must be maintained throughout the entire signal path. This paper offers an introduction
to digital video signals and the digital video formats currently in use.
Download The ABCs of Digital Video Signals White Paper at
t e c h n I c A l lY
By Eric Mendenhall, Director of Audio and Power Systems
Extron Power Supplies: How We Design to Be the Best
ecoming the best at power supply design is much more than using the right components or
applying exhaustive testing schemes. Designing the “best” of anything is a commitment to
a strict no-compromise philosophy. In the case of power supply design, that philosophy must be
founded on reliability over cost or features. Reliability implies efficiency; efficiency leads to meeting
green objectives. In this article I would like to share with you a few recent developments in power
supply design, coupled with an inside look into how we design power supply systems to be reliable
and sustainable.
Linear Power Supplies
To understand the significance of the term
“switchmode”, we should first investigate
the prior power converters that did not
operate in this way. Typically these are
called “linear,” but again there is some
discrepancy between the term as used
colloquially and the types of converters to
which it applies. First let’s investigate what
Figure 1: Line Frequency
Fig Power
1Fig Supply
we meant by the conversion of power into
something more useful to the electronic
circuits in the products we make. A typical
But there’s a catch, of course, actually
AC mains voltage is 120 Volt AC 60Hz
several of them. This simple converter
sinewave, whereas the electronics may
lacks line regulation, meaning that if
require +5 Volts DC and -5 Volts DC for
the AC mains voltage sags by 15%,
video circuits, or +80 Volts DC, and -80
then so do all of our output voltages.
Volts DC for an audio amplifier. Obviously
Maybe our circuits will work anywhere
we need to scale the voltage and provide
in that range, and maybe they won’t.
multiple outputs, but we also need to
And if the line voltage doubles from
provide electrical isolation from the AC
120VAC to 240VAC, then theoretically
mains for safety reasons. A transformer is
the output voltage would double, but
a very useful device that provides electrical
practically speaking we would have to
isolation, scaling, and multiple outputs
use a different transformer. Universal
all at once, but it only works with an AC
input is much more difficult to achieve,
signal. Transformers just can’t pass DC
and typically the voltage
range must be
for reasons we won’t get into here. Since
selected or configured at the factory. We
we already have an AC voltage on the
can add a regulator to make sure that the
Fig 3
AC mains, it’s a simple matter to use a
output voltage does not change if the AC
Fig 3 within limits. This
transformer as an AC to AC converter, then line voltage fluctuates
follow it with some simple diodes to provide can be accomplished with minimal effort
an AC to DC conversion as shown in
by adding a “linear” regulator (as shown
Figure 1. Now we have converted 120 Volts in Figure 2), which basically functions
AC to +5 Volts DC, -5 Volts DC, +80 Volts
as a controlled resistanceControl
between the
DC and -80 Volts DC with just a handful of
input and output voltages, turning a
simple components! This is called a “line Secondaryconsiderable
of the loadOutput
frequency power supply”.
into waste heat.
Fig 6
ExtroNews 20.2 | Summer 2009
Figure 2: Linear Regulation
Fig 2
Fig 2
The efficiency of a linear regulator running
from a line frequency transformer can be
typically 50-75%, creating
large amounts SOFT
Intrinsicheat simply
of waste
by their natureVoltage
of operation.Capacitance
This heat is power that
is first drawn from the AC mains, then
processed by the transformer
t Loss
losses, then dissipated
using a thermal
management system that
may include a
Fig 4
large and heavy heatsink and possibly a
Fig 4
fan to move the heat out of the product
and into the local ambient where it may
need further attention, being removed by
the equipment room cooling system. At
least the linear regulator is cheap to buy; it
certainly isn’t cheap to operate.
This type of power
the past, and in some places it still is,
(a) 5
but the industry has generally adopted
“switchmode” power conversion to reduce
Fig 5
size, weight, and waste heat. This type of
supply takes advantage of the fact that an
isolation transformer’s size and weight are
proportional to it’s operating frequency.
Fig 7Control
Fig 6
Fig 7
t e c h n I c A l lY
So instead of using the convenient and
“free” AC frequency provided by the AC
line, 60Hz in our example, we can use
Fig 1
60kHz for a reduction in size and weight.
In Figure 3, this is done by rectifying
the line frequency AC to DC, then using
Fig 1
active power electronics to create a
high frequency AC to pass through the
transformer, after which it is rectified to DC
again. This results in a great reduction of
size and weight.
Fig 1
Fig 6
Fig 4
Figure 6: (a) Diode Loss in output
(b) Diode loss reduced with transistor
Startup Circuit Loss
Figure 7 shows a startup resistor. This
is used to supply start-up power to the
In this type of circuit the output voltage
Fig 5
12V control system from the rectified
is a function of the input voltage and the
AC line voltage, 170VDC to 340VDC.
switch duty cycle. So it is capable of
Clamp Loss
Fig 2
Fig universal
This is only 4% to 8% efficient,Control
but the
input operation if a feedback
A traditional converter has some
worst part is that the resistor stays in
loop is closed, varying switch duty cycle
unavoidable energy stored, which can be
dissipating power for the
life of the
to maintain
voltage. Output
dissipated with
a traditional Control
clamp circuit
product. The 240VAC case dissipates
Since the circuit runs directly from rectified comprised of a(a) diodeControl
and capacitor
4 times the 120VAC case, due to V2/R.
120VAC or 240VAC,
there is signifi
clamp stored energyFig
5 and a resistor
Fig 6
difference in dominant losses for the two
to dissipate
the energy asFigshown
High efficiency designs use an actively
Fig 5
Control voltage
cases, usually favoring the low
controlled high voltage current source to
case. There are ways to mitigate these
than just the stored
start up the control system that dissipates
Capacitancedissipates more
Secondaryand increase
at the
energy, since it sits across the reflected
no power during active mode.
expense of increased complexity and
output voltage allControl
the time. A “resonant
design effort.
Here we will review
some of
clamp” topology
is Loss
a relatively
Fig 6
Fig 7 the clamp
Secondary energy inOutput
a nearly lossless way. With this
approach, an extra transistor is used at a
Transistor Loss
Fig 4
significant increase in cost and complexity,
Transistor switching losses are very
(b)efficiency is improved as shown in
significant for(a)
traditional “hard switched”
Figure 5(b). Transformers are designed
converters. This means there are losses
Fig 6
Figure 7: Startup Loss Eliminated by replacing
Fig 7
to maximize stored energy instead of
each time a transistor changes state.
resistor in (a) with transistor (b)
minimizing it.
These losses are from several factors
but the most significant is the discharge
Transformer Loss
of capacitance from the transistor itself.
Power transformer losses can be reduced
If the transistor's capacitance is allowed
simply by accommodating the size and
to transition “softly”, switching can
cost of a larger part. If the design is not
occur nearly without losses as shown in
competing on power density or cost
Figure 4. In order to keep the switching
minimization, this is a good choice.
Fig 4
Figure 3: Switchmode Power Supply
Fig 3
losses from getting too large, asRef.well
Diode Loss
as for cost cutting, a traditional design
The conversion of transformer AC to
uses as small a transistor as possible
output DC has traditionally been handled
Fig 2
since a smaller geometry has smaller
by a simple diode, butControl
at the expense of
capacitance. Unfortunately, this increases
an additional transistor, we can reduce the
the resistance, so conduction losses are
conduction losses dramatically as shown
Fig 2
increased. In the resonant transitions
in Figure 6. The timing of this added
Fig 3
converter, the transistor can be very
transistor must be carefully synchronized
large since it’s capacitance no longer
to the main transistor, but losses can be
leads to higher switching
cut an order of magnitude .
be made arbitrarily
Intrinsic can Voltage
a large geometry device, reducing
conduction loss asFigan2 indirect
result of
resonant switching.
Power Xfmr
Fig 4 with Hard
Figure 4: Transistor Capacitance
and Soft Switching Waveforms
Figure 5: (a) Dissipative Clamp Topology;
5 Topology
(b) Resonant
continued on page 30
t e c h n I c A l lY
Switchmode Power Supplies
— continued
Thermal Management Simplification
Another benefit of increased efficiency,
or reduced dissipation, is that thermal
management can be simplified. Traditional
designs often require the mounting of a
transistor to a dedicated heatsink. This
then requires a thermal insulator and a
nut and screw combination for mounting.
Then some type of locking nut must be
used. Due to repeated thermal expansion
and contraction, a compression washer
must be used to ensure proper force is
applied. To maintain electrical isolation,
a shoulder washer is used. All this
mass is then affixed to the circuit board
somehow (as shown in Figure 8), but it
can be susceptible to shock and vibration,
causing broken leads.
Insulating Bushing
Insulating Bushing
Plain Washer
Operating Temperature and
Life Expectancy
All the efficiency improvements result
in lower power draw, but the benefit of
increased efficiency goes much farther
than that. Heat accelerates component
aging; a cooler product lasts longer and
is more reliable. The general relationship
is a doubling of lifetime for every 10˚C
temperature reduction. The benefits of
high efficiency are seen as reduced failure
rate and increased life expectancy.
Power Factor Correction
Power factor is another area that received a
lot of attention from a worldwide compliance
perspective in the last 20 years. It has
been made mandatory in Europe for all
designs over 75 Watts in many product
categories. Power Factor is simply Watts /
Volt x Amperes. For a resistor, Watts = Volts
x Amperes and power factor is 1.00. In the
case of a simple line frequency rectifier,
current can flow only when the input AC
sinewave peaks exceed the DC voltage
on the capacitors, leading to high current
spikes at the waveform peaks and large
Spring Washer
Figure 8: Thermal management simplification
Fig 7
A more robust approach involves using
surface mount power transistors and
diodes, and using the PCB copper area
for a heatsink. If the dissipation is low
enough, this approach removes all hand
labor and human error from the process,
leaving just the highly mature and reliable
process of a solder interface with a low
profile result that is much less susceptible
to shock and vibration.
deadbands in between. The spectrum of
the resulting current contains harmonics of
the line frequency, which increases the total
current draw, but can deliver no real power.
The current is drawn from the line effectively
sent back without delivering any total power.
Of course this increased current draw
creates a very real load on the AC system
wiring, which must be sized for the Volt x
Amperes, rather than the Watts. In typical
designs of linear or switchmode power
supplies the power factor can be in the
0.5 to 0.7 range, meaning that the current
draw is 50% to 100% higher than required
by the power consumption. A technique
called power factor correction is used on
more sophisticated designs to improve the
power factor to close to 1.0 , which reduces
the current draw to just that required for
the power draw as shown in Figure 10.
Although this does not improve efficiency
in the power supply, it improves system
efficiency through the AC mains back to the
generator. Once again, this comes at the
expense of increased cost, complexity and
design resources, and high reliability can
only by achieved with very careful attention.
ExtroNews 20.2 | Summer 2009
240 VaC
Resonant Soft
Larger Die
Resonant Active
Active Synchronous
Intelligent Active
Larger Transformer
Larger Transformer
Failure Rate
Figure 9: Loss Summary
t e c h n I c A l lY
Energy Star
Electromagnetic Interference (EMI)
EMI is a concern in switchmode power
converters to a far greater degree than it
is in linear supplies. A switchmode circuit
operating with 60kHz square waves
produces harmonics easily up to the
60MHz region in the form of electrical
noise, electric fields, and magnetic fields,
which can interfere with operation of
the very circuits that the power supply
is supposed to be serving. These
harmonics can also exit the product via
cabling acting as unintentional antennae,
or openings in the chassis. Once in
the outside world, they can interfere
with all types of equipment. The last
20 years have seen an industry-wide
focus on compliance as regulating
360Hz 420Hz 480Hz 540Hz
360Hz 420Hz 480Hz 540Hz
Fig 9
Figure 10: (a) Without Power Factor Correction; (b) With Power Factor Correction
bodies worldwide have been created or
strengthened to deal with the problems
of electromagnetic interference. Early
designs were notoriously noisy from an
EMI perspective, but again, companies
were able to rise to the challenge and
produce switchmode designs effectively
as quiet as the old linear ones while
retaining all the benefits.
Reliability is a primary concern of
professionals, whether they are
customers, system designers, or product
manufacturers. At Extron, we have
adopted the philosophy regarding power
supplies for our products that reliability
is our primary objective, not cost, not
power density, not specsmanship. To
achieve this, we start with a highly efficient
topology made from the highest quality
components available and manufacture
it with the same process used for our
high-end video products, using the same
care and attention to detail in every step
of the process. From Purchasing to
Manufacturing, from Test Engineering to
Quality Assurance, Extron switchmode
power supplies ensure more high quality
Extron products.
Waste Heat vs Load
Waste, W
Energy Star is a voluntary public-private
partnership that sets energy efficiency
standards for a growing number of
product categories. One type of product
covered is the External Power Supply,
also called a Desktop Power Supply.
These are the plastic cased units
that power so many consumer and
professional products with low unit power
but enormous aggregate power. The
limits for Energy Star in a Desktop Power
Supply are a function of the power rating
of the supply; they include idle power
and average efficiency. Average efficiency
is simply the average of the efficiency
measured at 25%, 50%, 75%, and 100%
of rated load. The limits are difficult to
satisfy and present a significant design
challenge. Whereas typical Desktops
may have an idle power of 2.0W, an
Energy Star Desktop is allowed just 0.3W.
Efficiencies may be improved from just
70% on a non-Energy Star unit to 85%
in an Energy Star unit, meaning waste
heat has been cut in half. Although the
numbers may seem small at first, the
Watt-hours saved add up quickly over the
course of a year, especially considering
the high volumes of Desktop Power
Supplies sold.
Traditional 12W Desktop Supply
Extron Energy Star 12W Desktop Supply
Figure 11: Comparison of Traditional versus Energy Star Power Supplies
product brochures at
TouchLink™ 7" Wall Mount Touchpanel
The Extron TLP 700MV TouchLink 7" Wall Mount Touchpanel is designed to mount securely
into a wall, lectern, or other flat surface. In addition to the seven-inch, full-color, high resolution
touchscreen, ten field-labelable backlit buttons provide expanded control capabilities and can
be configured to ensure that critical functions are always available. The TLP 700MV touchpanel
supports our predesigned application templates and enables integrators to deploy a fully
configurable surface-mounted touchscreen control system with a sophisticated, high tech
Version Description
Part Number
RM 700M
BB 700M
7" TouchLink Panel - Wall Mount
Rack Mount Kit for the TLP 700MV
Back Box for TLP 700MV
Touchlink™ 7" Tabletop Touchpanel
The Extron TLP 700TV TouchLink 7" Tabletop Touchpanel is designed for tabletop use with
up to 45° of tilt or VESA mounting. In addition to the seven-inch, full-color high resolution
touchscreen, the ten field-labelable backlit buttons provide expanded control capabilities
to ensure that critical functions are easily accessible. The TLP 700TV touchpanel supports
our predesigned application templates and enables integrators to deploy a fully configurable
tabletop touchscreen control interface with a sophisticated, high tech appearance.
Version Description
Part Number
VM 700T
7" TouchLink Panel - Tabletop
VESA Mount Adapter for TLP 700TV
TouchLink™ 3.5" Cable Cubby® Touchpanel
The Extron TLP 350CV TouchLink™ 3.5" Cable Cubby® Touchpanel features an elegant,
metal enclosure for system control and cable management that can be mounted securely
into a tabletop or other flat surface. In addition to the tilt-up, full-color touchscreen, the ten
customizable backlit buttons provide expanded control capabilities to ensure that critical
functions are easily accessible. The TLP 350CV touchpanel supports our predesigned
application templates and enables integrators to deploy a fully configurable furniture-mounted
touchscreen control with cable management and easy access to A/V connectivity and power.
Version Description
Part Number
3.5" Panel - Black Anodized-no AC outlet
3.5" Panel - US Black Anodized
3.5" Panel - EU Black Anodized
3.5" Panel - Universal-Black Anodized
3.5" Panel - Brushed Alum - no AC outlet
3.5" Panel - US Brushed Aluminum
3.5" Panel - EU Brushed Aluminum
3.5" Panel - Universal-Brushed Aluminum
ExtroNews 20.2 | Summer 2009
AC Outlet Options
IPL 250
IP Link Ethernet Control Processor
The IPL 250 is an Ethernet control processor for use as part of a TouchLink™ configurable
touchpanel control system. The IPL 250 provides vital A/V system control capabilities including
bidirectional serial ports, IR ports, relays, and contact closure inputs for interfacing with
displays, switchers, sources, screen control, lighting systems, and other devices. The IPL 250
is configured using the free, easy-to-use Extron Global Configurator software. Using the Free
GlobalViewer® Web-based A/V resource management and remote control application, users
can manage, monitor, and control both Extron and third-party equipment like projectors,
plasmas, monitors, VCRs, DVD players, and other devices in an Ethernet network with the
IPL 250.
Version Description
Part Number
IPL 250
IP Link Ethernet Control Processor
GUI Configurator Software
User Interface Design Software for TouchLink Panels
Extron GUI Configurator software, exclusively for use with TouchLink panels, makes designing
full-color touchscreen interfaces easy, even for those without graphic design skills. Getting
started is fast and simple using the ready-to-use, predesigned application templates for single
display rooms, dual display rooms, divisible rooms, multi-image systems, and video conference
suites. The touchscreen design templates are fully customizable and matched carefully to the
most common A/V applications integrators are likely to encounter. GUI Configurator software's
resource libraries consist of shapes, graphics, and sounds provide a variety of choices for
design of master pages, popup pages for transport controls, multistate buttons, 3D effects,
video windows, dynamic text, and more.
Version Description
Part Number
GUI Configurator
User Interface Design Software
Global Configurator 3.0
Free Configuration Software - Now Supports TouchLink™ Systems
Global Configurator is a simple-to-use, yet comprehensive software application that allows
non-programmers to configure a wide range of Extron products, including IP Link, MediaLink,
and TouchLink Systems. It provides an integrated environment for defining A/V control and
monitoring system functionality from an easy-to-use graphical user interface. It’s simple enough
to be used for configuring a single room controller, yet powerful enough to facilitate building
a Web-based A/V resource management and remote monitoring system for hundreds of A/V
devices in multiple locations.
Version Description
Part Number
Global Configurator
Configuration software
product brochures at
MLC 62 Series
Basic MediaLink® Controllers
The MLC 62 MediaLink® Controllers are elegant keypad control interfaces designed for
classrooms and meeting facilities. The MLC 62 IR D and MLC 62 RS D mount in a Decora-style
wallplate and the MLC 62 EU mounts in a one-gang European junction box. The controllers
offer eight customizable backlit buttons for control of common A/V system operations, including
power on, power off, volume up, volume down, and input source selection. These controllers
serve as a replacement for a display's handheld IR remote, providing user-friendly control for a
projector or flat panel display, as well as eliminating problems related to misplaced IR remotes,
confusing menus, and dead batteries.
Version Description
Part Number
MLM 62 D 6B
MLM 62 D 8B
IR and RS-232 Control - Decora faceplate
IR Control - Decora faceplate
Six Button bezel kit w/ buttons for MLC 62 D
Eight button bezel kit w/ buttons for MLC 62 D
IR and RS-232 Control - EU Frame
MLS 608 D
Eight Input MediaLink® Switcher with ProDSP™ Audio
The Extron MLS 608 D MediaLink® Switcher is a simple-to-use, eight input, multi-format
switcher designed to integrate digital and analog sources. All signals are transmitted over
CAT 5-type cable to the included MTP/HDMI U R Twisted Pair Receiver. The MLS 608 D
features Extron ProDSP™ digital audio processing, which provides an extensive array of
easy-to-use tools for audio system set-up and fine-tuning. The MLS 608 D offers digital video
switching with four HDCP-compliant, HDMI 1.3 inputs, and analog video switching with four
universal inputs, including an Extron Universal MTP Twisted Pair input. It outputs HDMI twisted
pair signals and analog MTP Twisted Pair to the included MTP/HDMI U R receiver, providing a
complete digital and analog video and audio switching system.
Version Description
Part Number
MLS 608 D
MLS 608 D MA
MLS 608 D SA
Variable Preamp Output - No Amplifier
50 Watt 70 Volt Mono Power Amplifier
2x25 Watt Stereo Power Amplifier
MLS 608 D SA
Works with MediaLink Controllers
MLS 226 IP
MLS 226 IP DV+
System 208 D
Eight Input A/V Switcher with Integrated Device Control and ProDSP™ Audio
The Extron System 208 D is an eight input A/V system switcher designed to integrate both
digital and analog sources. It works with optional TouchLink™ Touchpanels and SCP Secondary
Control Panels to provide enhanced display and room control, and features Extron ProDSP™
with an extensive array of easy-to-use, digital audio processing tools for audio system setup
and fine-tuning. The System 208 D offers digital video switching with four HDCP-compliant,
HDMI 1.3 inputs, as well as analog video switching with four universal inputs, including an
Extron Universal MTP Twisted Pair input. It outputs HDMI twisted pair and analog MTP Twisted
Pair signals to the included MTP/HDMI U R receiver, providing a complete digital and analog
video and audio switching system with integrated room control.
Version Description
Part Number
System 208 D
System 208 D MA
System 208 D SA
Variable Preamp Output - No Amplifier
50 Watt 70 Volt Mono Power Amplifier
2x25 Watt Stereo Power Amplifier
ExtroNews 20.2 | Summer 2009
System 208 D SA
Works with MediaLink® Panels
and TouchLink™ Touchpanels
SCP 226
SCP 104
DMP 64
ProDSP™ Digital Matrix Processor
The Extron DMP 64 Digital Matrix Processor is a 6x4 audio matrix mixer featuring Extron
ProDSP, a powerful digital signal processing platform for complete audio signal routing and
control. The DMP 64 features six mono mic/line inputs, each of which can be mixed into any
or all four mono line outputs. ProDSP is loaded with powerful tools to control level, dynamics,
filters, delay, ducking, loudness, and feedback suppression. It is managed by the intuitive DSP
Configurator Software, a PC-based application featuring the Graphical User Environment which
allows for complete audio system visualization within a single window. The DMP 64 is ideal for
boardrooms, meeting facilities, and other applications that require an outboard matrix mixer with
DSP for audio signal management.
Version Description
Part Number
DMP 64
ProDSP Digital Matrix Processor
SSP 7.1
Surround Sound Processor
The Extron SSP 7.1 five input Surround Sound Processor provides up to eight channels of
surround sound for pro A/V applications in corporate and commercial environments. The
SSP 7.1 automatically detects and decodes audio content in various Dolby® and DTS®
formats from DVD, Blu-ray Disc, and HDTV broadcasts. It also offers Dolby Pro Logic II/IIx
and DTS Neo:6 processing to provide surround sound from two-channel stereo. The SSP 7.1
features coaxial and optical digital inputs, plus an analog balanced/unbalanced two-channel
input. It is designed for integration into pro A/V installations, with a compact, rack-mountable
metal enclosure, RS-232 serial control, and balanced/unbalanced line level outputs. The
included control software offers a user-friendly GUI for setup and operation.
Version Description
Part Number
SSP 7.1
Surround Sound Processor
FF 120T
Extron Exclusive Patent Pending Flat Field™ Speaker with Transformer
The Extron FF 120T is a full-range sound field speaker for 70 volt/100 volt systems. The
FF 120T features Extron patent pending Flat Field technology which reduces beaming of mid
and high frequencies directly under the speaker, delivering consistent sound levels across the
listening area. In addition, the FF 120T offers an extraordinarily wide dispersion area of 170
degrees, providing a very wide room coverage pattern which is especially important for rooms
with low ceilings. An Extron exclusive, UL 2043 plenum rated, 1' x 2' (30.5 cm x 61 cm) by
3.25" (8.3 cm) deep aluminized composite enclosure drops into standard suspended ceilings
providing quicker installations. With a low profile enclosure, this speaker is an excellent choice
for ceiling installations with tight above-the-ceiling space issues.
Version Description
Part Number
FF 120T
Ceiling - Drop-In, Transformer, Pair
Learn more about Flat Field™
Download the white paper at
product brochures at
XPA 2004
Four Channel Power Amplifier - 200 Watts Per Channel
The Extron XTRA™ Series XPA 2004 is a full rack-sized, four channel power amplifier designed
for high-powered, professional integration projects. This professional grade amplifier delivers
800 watts of continuous output power. The XPA 2004 four channel power amplifier offers 200
watts per channel output into 4 ohms, a 100 dB signal-to-noise ratio, and 0.05% THD. This
ENERGY STAR® qualified amplifier features an Extron exclusive, highly efficient, advanced
Class D amplifier design with patented CDRS™ - Class D Ripple Suppression technology that
eliminates EMI emissions and interference with sensitive A/V equipment. This Extron exclusive,
high efficiency design generates very little heat and allows the amplifier to be convection cooled.
Version Description
Part Number
XPA 2004
Four Channel Power Amplifier
XPA 2002-70V
Two Channel 70 Volt Power Amplifier - 200 Watts Per Channel
The Extron XTRA™ Series XPA 2002-70V is a full rack-sized, two channel power amplifier
designed for high-powered, professional integration projects. This professional grade amplifier
delivers 400 watts of continuous output power. The XPA 2002-70V two channel 70 volt power
amplifier offers 200 watts per channel output, a 100 dB signal-to-noise ratio, and THD of
less than 0.1%. This ENERGY STAR® qualified amplifier features an Extron exclusive, highly
efficient, advanced Class D amplifier design with patented CDRS™ - Class D Ripple Suppression
technology that eliminates EMI emissions and interference with sensitive A/V equipment. This
Extron exclusive, high efficiency design generates very little heat and allows the amplifier to be
convection cooled.
Version Description
Part Number
XPA 2002-70V
70 Volt Two Channel Power Amplifier
XPA 2003C-70V
Three Channel Combo Power Amplifier - 200 Watts Per Channel
The Extron XTRA™ Series XPA 2003C-70V is a full rack-sized, three channel power amplifier
with dedicated low and high impedance outputs. This professional grade amplifier delivers 600
watts of continuous output power. The XPA 2003C-70V three channel power amplifier offers
two channels of 200 watts into 4 ohms plus a third channel with 200 watts into a 70 volt line,
a 100 dB signal-to-noise ratio, and THD of less than 0.1%. This ENERGY STAR® qualified
amplifier features an Extron exclusive, highly efficient, advanced Class D amplifier design with
patented CDRS™ - Class D Ripple Suppression technology that eliminates EMI emissions
and interference with sensitive A/V equipment. This Extron exclusive, high efficiency design
generates very little heat and allows the amplifier to be convection cooled.
Version Description
Part Number
XPA 2003C-70V
Three Channel Combo Power Amplifier
ExtroNews 20.2 | Summer 2009
Universal MTP Twisted Pair Transmitter for VGA, Video, and Audio - Decora® Wallplate
The Extron MTP U T A D is a two-gang Decora®-style, Universal Twisted Pair Transmitter with
dedicated VGA, HD component video, S-video, composite video, and audio inputs for sending
a wide variety of video signals along with summed mono audio signals over a single CAT 5-type
cable. The auto-input switching feature automatically selects and transmits an active video and
audio signal to the system without user interaction. To take full advantage of the transmitting
capabilities of the MTP U T A D, it is ideally paired with Extron Universal MTP receivers,
providing dramatic cost savings, design flexibility, and superior performance in complex twisted
pair switching and matrix switching applications.
Version Description
Part Number
MTP Twisted Pair Universal Transmitter
USP 507
Universal Signal Processor
The Extron USP 507 is an all-in-one scaler, video transcoder, and digital-to-analog video
converter. It also provides analog-to-digital video capability as an option. A seven input switcher
supports analog and digital video formats, from composite video to high resolution DVI, RGBHV
and optional SDI/HD-SDI. The USP 507 features advanced video processing that automatically
detects the input video format and applies high performance scaling. RGBHV and Extron MTP
Twisted Pair outputs are standard, with available output boards for DVI, HD-SDI, or scanconverted video. The USP 507 is ideal for applications that require universal compatibility to
accept almost any input video format and produce high quality video for display.
Version Description
Part Number
USP 507
USP 507 SC
Standard Version
Scan Converted Output
SDI/HD-SDI Input, DVI-D Output
SDI/HD-SDI Input, Scan Converted Output
SDI/HD-SDI Input and HD-SDI Output
Four Input Video and RGB Scaler
The Extron DVS 304 DVI is a Video and RGB Scaler incorporating advanced scaling technology
from Extron as well as a host of flexible, convenient, integrator-friendly features. This high
performance scaler is designed to satisfy the requirements of today's high quality, high
resolution video presentations using the latest displays, and at the same time facilitate the
process of system integration. The DVS 304 DVI offers high performance video processing
with selectable output rates up to 1920x1200 and HDTV 1080p, as well as simultaneous DVI
and analog RGB or component video outputs. It is ideal for a wide range of A/V environments
including boardrooms, conference rooms, educational institutions, houses of worship, and
event and staging applications.
Version Description
Part Number
Standard Version
With Audio Switching
With SDI Input
With SDI Input and Audio Switching
product brochures at
DCX 1600
Modular Digital Matrix Switcher for DVI and HDMI
The Extron DCX 1600 represents a new concept in digital matrix switching for DVI and HDMI.
The compact, 3U enclosure accepts any combination of DVI or HDMI matrix boards. Available
4-port and 8-port input and output boards can be used separately or together to provide 16 I/O
size combinations for full system customization from 4x4 to 16x16. Input and output cards are
HDCP compliant and can be mixed-and-matched for fully-interchangeable switching between
HDMI and DVI sources and displays.
Version Description
Part Number
DCX 1600 Frame
DCX 8i DVI Pro
DCX 4i DVI Pro
DCX 8o DVI Pro
DCX 4o DVI Pro
3U, 4-Slot Matrix Switcher Frame
8-Input HDCP-Compliant DVI
4-Input HDCP-Compliant DVI
8-Output HDCP-Compliant DVI
4-Output HDCP-Compliant DVI
8-Input HDCP-Compliant HDMI
4-Input HDCP-Compliant HDMI
8-Output HDCP-Compliant HDMI
4-Output HDCP-Compliant HDMI
HDMI Matrix Switchers
The Extron DXP HDMI Series are high performance, digital matrix switchers that route HDMI
signals from multiple sources to any or all of up to eight HDMI-equipped display devices.
These HDMI 1.3 compatible matrix switchers support resolutions up to 1920x1200 and HDTV
1080p/60, and are HDCP compliant, enabling simultaneous distribution of a single source signal
to one or more compliant displays. Available in sizes of 4x4, 4x8, 8x4, and 8x8, the DXP HDMI
Series is designed for ease of integration in applications that require reliable HDMI signal routing.
They include several convenience features common to Extron matrix switchers such as the QSFPC™ - QuickSwitch Front Panel Controller, global presets, IP Link® Ethernet control, and more.
Version Description
Part Number
4x8 HDMI Matrix Switcher
4x4 HDMI Matrix Switcher
8x4 HDMI Matrix Switcher
8x8 HDMI Matrix Switcher
DXP DVI Pro Series
HDCP-Compliant DVI Matrix Switchers
The Extron DXP DVI Pro Series are high performance, digital matrix switchers that route single
link DVI-D signals from multiple sources to any or all of up to eight DVI-equipped display
devices. All matrix switchers in the DXP DVI Pro Series support resolutions up to 1920x1200
and HDTV 1080p/60, and are HDCP compliant, enabling simultaneous distribution of a single
source signal to one or more compliant displays. Available in sizes of 4x4, 4x8, 8x4, and 8x8,
the DXP DVI Pro Series is designed for ease of integration in applications that require reliable
DVI signal routing. They include several convenience features common to Extron matrix
switchers such as the QS-FPC™ - QuickSwitch Front Panel Controller, global presets, IP Link®
Ethernet control, and more.
Version Description
Part Number
DXP 48 DVI Pro
DXP 44 DVI Pro
DXP 84 DVI Pro
DXP 84 DVI Pro
DXP 88 DVI Pro
4x8 DVI Matrix Switcher
4x4 DVI Matrix Switcher
8x4 DVI Matrix Switcher
8x4 DVI Matrix Switcher
8x8 DVI Matrix Switcher
ExtroNews 20.2 | Summer 2009
DXP 88 DVI Pro
FOX 4G Matrix 3200
Modular Fiber Optic Matrix Switcher from 8x8 to 32x32
The Extron FOX 4G Matrix 3200 is a high performance, modular fiber optic matrix switcher for
complete, end-to-end digital A/V signal transmission and routing over fiber optic cable. The
FOX 4G Matrix 3200 is expandable in sizes from 8x8 up to 32x32, and is fully compatible with
the FOX Series of fiber optic transmitters and receivers. Supporting rates up to 4.25 Gbps, it
accepts and routes standard definition video, high resolution computer-video, DVI-D, and multirate SDI. Equipped with the integration-friendly features common to Extron matrix switchers,
together with hot-swappable I/O boards and fan, real-time system monitoring, and redundant,
hot-swappable power supplies, the FOX 4G Matrix 3200 delivers highly reliable, enterprise-wide
switching of fiber optic A/V and control signals for any mission-critical environment.
Version Description
Part Number
FOX 4G Matrix 3200
FOX 4G I/O 88 MM
FOX 4G I/O 88 SM
FOX 4G Matrix 3200 Frame
8x8 I/O Board - Multimode
8x8 I/O Board - Singlemode
8x8 I/O Board - Multi-Rate SDI
SMX System MultiMatrix
Modular Multi-Plane Matrix Switcher with Redundant Power Supply
The SMX System MultiMatrix Series of multi-plane matrix switchers combines multiple,
independent analog and digital matrix switchers in a truly modular, field-configurable frame.
SMX frames are available in sizes up to 5U, capable of supporting up to 10 separate matrix
boards which can be switched independently or simultaneously, all under a single point of
control. The SMX combines the proven reliability and high performance of Extron's popular
CrossPoint, MAV Plus, HDXP Plus, and MVX Series matrix switchers with the efficiency of a
modular matrix switcher design. The SMX System is an ideal choice for mid-sized applications
that require the switching of different signal types and a cost-effective upgrade path for ongoing
I/O or signal format changes.
Version Description
Part Number
SMX 200 Frame RPS
SMX 300 Frame RPS
SMX 400 Frame RPS
SMX 500 Frame RPS
2U/4-Slot with Redundant Power Supply
3U/6-Slot with Redundant Power Supply
4U/8-Slot with Redundant Power Supply
5U/10-Slot with Redundant Power Supply
Cable Retraction System for Cable Cubby® Enclosures
The Extron Retractor is a unique, patent-pending cable retraction and management system
designed to work with new or previously installed Cable Cubby® enclosures. The Retractor
provides discreet, convenient access to A/V cables, improving the management of cables within
the Cable Cubby. The Retractor is available in versions to support most A/V and data signal
types including VGA, Network, PC Audio, USB, DVI, or HDMI. The cables extend up to three
feet (90 cm) and are held securely in place at the desired length. Retractor modules include
cables that are engineered to Extron specifications.
Version Description
Part Number
Retractor VGA
Retractor PC Audio
Retractor Network
Retractor HDMI
Retractor USB
Retractor DVI
VGA Male to Male
3.5 mm Stereo Audio M to M
Network Cat 5e
HDMI Male to Male
DVI Male to Male
Retractor VGA shown installed in
Cable Cubby 800
Retractor DVI
Extron has great career opportunities!
Extron USA and EMEA are seeking qualified applicants for a variety
of career opportunities in Sales, Technical Support, Marketing,
Engineering, and Product Support.
As an industry leader, Extron is committed to maintaining the
outstanding level of quality services our customers expect. We strive to
continually provide Service, Support, and Solutions to our customers:
dealers, consultants, and A/V professionals. Our customers are our
most important asset, and our employees are essential to maintaining
that asset. We seek individuals who desire to achieve a rewarding
career in a technical environment.
Extron uSa
Extron Europe
ExtroNews is published by Extron Electronics/RGB
Systems Inc. No portion of this newsletter may
be reproduced in any form without written
permission from Extron Electronics. Every effort
has been made to ensure accuracy in content;
however, Extron assumes no responsibility for
errors and omissions in the information provided
herein. ExtroNews is sent free of charge to A/V
industry professionals and end-users.
We welcome your comments and contributions!
Please submit ideas to ExtroNews editor.
E-mail: [email protected]
Extron USA West
Sales: +800.633.9876 or +1.714.491.1500
Fax: +1.714.491.1517
Sales & Marketing
Product Development
Applications Engineer – CA and NC
Audio Visual Systems
- Design Engineer - NoCA, TX, DC, IL
Consultant Applications
- Engineer - NoCA, TX, DC
Educational Market
-Developer - SoCA, NoCA, NY, NJ
Product Marketing Manager
Regional Trainer – (TX and Canada)
Software Applications Engineer
Audio Power Electronics Design Engineer
Cable Assembly Engineer
Compliance Engineer
Design Engineer
DSP Engineer
EMC Lab Technician
Hardware Design Engineer, Sr. - NC
Wireless Systems Design Engineer
Applications Engineer - Control Products
Compiler Developer
Software Applications Engineer
Software Development Manager
Extron USA East
Sales: +800.633.9876 or +1.919.863.1794
Fax:: +1.919.863.1797
Sales - EMEA
Extron Europe
Sales: +31.33.453.4040 or +800.3987.6673
Fax: +31.33.453.4050
Marketing - EMEA
Customer Support
Applications Engineer
Technical Support Manager
Technical Manager Scandinavia
Web Content Specialist
Extron Japan
Sales: +81.3.3511.7655
Fax: +81.3.3511.7656
For a complete list of current career opportunities worldwide, please see our Web site at
Extron China
Sales: +400.883.1568 or +86.21.3760.1568
Fax: +86.21.3760.1566
Extron Middle East
Sales: +971.4.2991800
Fax: +971.4.2991880
Extron USA
1230 South Lewis Street
Anaheim, CA 92805
EMAIL: [email protected]
Extron Asia
Sales: +800.7339.8766 or +65.6383.4400
Fax: +65.6383.4664
United Kingdom
School of A/V Technologies
June 30
Anaheim, CA
Advanced School of A/V Technologies
August 6-7
Dubai, United Arab
School of Global Configurator: IP Link & MediaLink
July 5-6
Anaheim, CA
School of A/V Technologies for System Designers
August 6-7
School of A/V Technologies for System Designers
July 8-9
Dubai, United Arab
School of Global Configurator: IP Link & MediaLink
August 9-10
Raleigh, NC
Shenyang, China
School of A/V Technologies for System Designers
July 9-10
Melbourne, Australia
School of A/V Technologies for System Designers
August 10-11
Raleigh, NC
School of Global Configurator
July 10
Melbourne, Australia
School of Global Configurator: IP Link & MediaLink
August 12-13
Advanced School of A/V Technologies
July 14-15
Shanghai, China
School of A/V Technologies for System Designers
August 19-20
Atlanta, GA
School of A/V Technologies for System Designers
July 20-21
School of Global Configurator: IP Link & MediaLink
August 26-27
Atlanta, GA
School of Global Configurator
July 22
InfoComm US
Orlando, FL
June 17-19
Washington, D.C.
June 28 - July 1
NECA ’09
Seattle, WA
September 12-15
Las Vegas, NV
September 20-23
Washington, D.C.
September 26-29
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