BARIX - Audio over IP
UPDATE Barix AG | Seefeldstrasse 303 | 8008 Zuerich | Switzerland
www.barix.com | T +41 43 4332211 | +41 44 2742849
Barix Technology Inc. | USA | info@barix.com
[date]

CEO's Editorial

Technology Explained: Ethersound

Barix Relevance

Product Featured: Exstreamer 200

Software Application

Barix Application Story


CEO's Editorial

Johannes Rietschel, CEO of Barix Dear [firstname] [lastname],

this is the first Barix newsletter – a milestone for us, but is it news for you? I think it is and here is why.
I understand you may get lots of newsletters, and obviously, we are all overloaded with email. So why yet another publication?
Well, you have some relation which is important to Barix – you may be a current user, a prospect, a distributor, or even a competitor, or just interested in our product. Whatever relationship, we do want to reach out to you, to help you stay informed on the latest developments in the audio world, to provide insights that can help you take advantage of our expertise, deliver you product news and technical background information on a regular basis.
We plan to produce a regular newsletter, covering technologies and their relevance to Barix products. We will explain briefly what we can offer in that space and share information on potential markets, software applications and case studies.
I am well aware that we are all overloaded with email and short on time. With that in mind, each newsletter will take a focused look on one specific technology, products, significant developments, software applications and case studies.
For example, this first newsletter covers the Ethersound technology – an exciting digital audio transport technology – and information on the Barix Exstreamer 200 audio decoder and a brief description of a nice realtime audio installation in a church in Switzerland.
Each newsletter will be relatively short – something you can read during a short commute. You should be able to read it in a 15 minute break.
We always welcome feedback from you on how we can ensure the newsletter is of use to you. If you don’t want to receive it, just let us know – but please take a few minutes to let us know why and of course we will unsubscribe you from our email list if you do not want to receive further newsletters (although we would clearly regret that and ask you to give us a brief explanation why). We will do our best to answer your emails quickly.

Happy reading of this first newsletter and please note that I will strive to answer your emails in person if you contact me.
Johannes Rietschel
CEO & Founder, Barix AG



Technology Explained: Ethersound



Ethersound is a unique digital audio transport technology, invented by Digigram. It is widely used in for stage/studio/concert/stadium applications in live sound environments where multiple audio channels need to be distributed over fast Ethernet links with synchronization and very low latency.
Ethersound is currently, at the time being, the one technology which provides the lowest, most consistent latency audio distribution over standard Ethernet. An end-to-end delay of much less than 1ms is achievable. Up up to 64 independent channels of 48kHz sampled, 24bit PCM audio can be carried, along with control and monitoring information.
Ethersound is NOT IP-based, and it can also not be used over ADSL, Wifi or similar technologies. Multiple versions of the standard exist, but the most common is ES100, which uses 100MBps (fast) Ethernet.
Ethersound devices are typically daisy chained, contributing devices (with audio inputs) MUST be used in a daisy chain operation. “Downstream” (receiving) devices can be also interfaced via switches. Ethersound needs practically the full 100Mbps performance of Fast Ethernet. It can not be shared with IP devices, however, an Ethersound “downstream” distribution can be done on a 100Mbps performance VLAN.

Technology Brief



Barix Relevance


During the last year, Barix has implemented ES100/spkr, an “output only” variant of Ethersound, in various products. Any Exstreamer or Annuncicom can now also operate as an Ethersound endpoint, serving as a low-cost, low-latency play-out device in Ethersound systems. The devices are fully compliant with the standard, fully licensed, and controllable by Ethersound management software from Digigram.
Up to 2 channels can be decoded and played out by the Exstreamer and Annuncicom 1000 devices, the channels can even be dynamically selected using an infrared control, a wall mountable volume/source control or a serial interface.
All Exstreamer and Annuncicom devices sold since January 2009 are licensed, and the standard software contains the Ethersound implementation, selectable in the setup, so no firmware load is necessary.
OEM: All Barix IP Audio Modules are technically capable to run the Ethersound firmware. A one-time license and registration with Digigram is necessary for OEMs who want to use IPAMs in their applications – the Ethersound licenses necessary for the IPAMs are included in the Barix IP Audio Module pricing.



Product Featured: Exstreamer 200

 
The Exstreamer 200 – as every Exstreamer series product – is a network audio decoder, equipped suitable to receive audio over the network. It supports various protocols, and outputs outputting the decoded analog audio signal either via its headphone interface, an S/PDIF optical link, or – most important – via its built in power amplifier, providing up to 2x25W output power to connected speakers (4 or 8 Ohm).

Amplifier: The power amplifier that is integrated in the Exstreamer 200 is an efficient low loss class “D” type digital amplifier. Active cooling of the device is not required.
Power: The provided 24V power supply or any other standard, regulated 24V power supply can be used to achieve full output power. If less output power is sufficient, a lower voltage power supply can be used. At the min. operating voltage of 12V, the Exstreamer 200 still delivers 2x4W into 4 Ohm, enough to fill a nice room with excellent sound!
PoE: The Exstreamer has been tested and can be used with an external PoE converter such as the D-Link DWL-P50. This adapter retrieves PoE power from a switch and supplies the Exstreamer with 12V max. 12W – an ideal combination with the device.
Audio Formats: Since a recent DSP upgrade, the Exstreamer 200 supports even more audio formats, including AACplus V2, Ogg Vorbis, MP3, uLaw/aLaw/PCM and WMA.
Firmware: All standard and BCL firmware written for the Exstreamer product family will run on the Exstreamer 200.
Accessories: The Exstreamer 200 comes with the power supply and a Barix remote control (it has a built-in IR “eye”). If an external IR receiver is necessary, the Barix IR kit can be acquired independently. A mounting bracket is available for easy wall mounting. The VSC (volume source control), a wall mountable unit with 2-digit display and selection knob, fits well with the Exstreamer to add local room control if IR is not suitable.
Applications: The Exstreamer 200 is typically used in applications where 4/8 Ohm loudspeakers need to be directly addressed/driven, such as being it in schools, corridors, hotel rooms, camera poles, or multi-zone/multi-room audio distribution solutions for clubs, saunas, health clubs. An ideal device to drive two monitoring speakers, the Exstreamer 200 is a good choice in Ethersound Audio Systems.

Data sheet (http://www.barix.com/Exstreamer_200/451/)


Software Application

No specific Barix Software Application for use with Ethersound exists. So this section is intentionally kept empty in this newsletter.


Barix Application Story


Stadtmission St. Gallen – Barix On Site with Ethersound

This March, we released an application brief to the press about one of our first Barix/Ethersound installations — in a Swiss church of all places! We got word of in Switzerland. The installation uses Annuncicom 1000 devices to distribute live audio from one central building to multiple network connected areas. According to our customer, the installation saved a lot of money and the audio quality and (low) delay are perfect.
The Annuncicom 1000 has been selected due to its balanced audio outputs and the number of additional relays available.

Here is a direct link to the story on our website (http://www.barix.com/news/651/)