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General Features

OPTIMOD-quality digital audio processing

On a PCI sound card that pre-processes audio for consistency and loudness before it is transmitted or recorded.

Available in two versions

1101 for PCI sockets and 1101e for PCIe (PCI Express) sockets.


include netcasting, HD Radio® (both primary and secondary digital channels), DAB and other dedicated digital radio services, FMExtra™ and other digital subcarriers, mastering, audio production and many others.

Supplied WAVE drivers

Allow OPTIMOD-PC’s processed output to pass through the PCI bus to the CPU, driving standard PC applications like Orban’s OPTIMOD-PC MPEG-4 HE-AAC, as well as well as Microsoft or Real streaming encoders. OPTIMOD-PC’s audio driver allows it to appear as two sound devices to the computer’s operating system. The driver (with the aid of concurrently running third-party software) also allows OPTIMOD-PC to receive audio over IP from the host computer’s network connection. Drivers are available for 32 and 64-bit Windows XP, 32 and 64-bit Windows Vista, and 32 and 64-bit Windows 7.

Orban PreCode™ technology
Manipulates several aspects of the audio to minimize artifacts caused by low bitrate codecs, ensuring consistent loudness and texture from one source to the next. PreCode includes special audio band detection algorithms that are energy and spectrum aware. This can improve codec performance on some codecs by reducing audio processing induced codec artifacts, even with program material that has been preprocessed by other processing than OPTIMOD.
Two-Band automatic gain control
With window gating and selectable L/R or sum/difference processing; compensates for widely varying input levels.
Bass equalizer and parametric equalizer
Shelving bass equalizer and three-band parametric equalizer let you color the audio to your exact requirements.
Low-IM look-ahead limiter
Effectively limits peaks while ensuring that low-bit-rate codecs operate optimally without overload.
Precisely controls peak levels
To prevent overmodulation or codec overload. The peak limiter can be set up to control “flat” transmission channels or channels pre-emphasized at 50 µs or 75 µs.
Pre-emphasis limiting
While primarily oriented toward “flat” media, OPTIMOD-PC can also provide pre-emphasis limiting for the two standard pre-emphasis curves of 50 μs and 75 μs. This allows it to protect pre-emphasized satellite uplinks and similar channels where protection limiting or light processing is required. Because analog television FM aural carriers are lightly processed, OPTIMOD-PC can also be used to process these.

Because its processing topology is most effective with “flat media”, OPTIMOD-PC cannot provide extreme loudness for pre-emphasized radio channels. Use one of Orban’s OPTIMOD-FM processors for this application.

Dual-mono architecture
OPTIMOD-PC’s dual-mono architecture allows entirely separate mono programs to be processed in 5-band mode, facilitating dual-language operation. In mono mode, each channel has its own CBS Loudness Controller and Loudness Meter.

In this mode, both processing channels operate using the same processing parameters (like release time); you cannot adjust the two channels to provide different processing textures.

Balanced analog input
With 24-bit A/D converter is always active, mixing with the two digital inputs.
Balanced analog monitor output
With 24-bit D/A converter.
Two AES3 or S/PDIF digital inputs
With high-quality sample rate conversion to allow two asynchronous digital sources to be mixed: Ideal for network operations using local commercial/announcement insertion.
The second digital input
also accepts AES3 house sync, synchronizing the AES3 output sample rate to the sample rate of the sync input.
Accepts sample rate from 32 to 96 kHz
Digital inputs accept any sample rate from 32 to 96 kHz without manual configuration.
Two AES3 digital outputs
At 32, 44.1, 48, 88.2 or 96 kHz sample rate.
Two Wave inputs
from any PC audio application (like a playout system) that can emit standard Wave audio. Audio from the Wave inputs can be mixed and switched with OPTIMOD-PC’s hardware inputs. Because there are two inputs, you can operate two PC applications simultaneously and mix and/or switch their Wave outputs inside OPTIMOD-PC, such as content/commercial insertion systems.
Internal processing
Occurs at 48 kHz sample rate and 20 kHz audio bandwidth.
Full PCI bus-mastering
Minimizes load on the host computer‘s memory and CPU.
I/O Mixer application
Permits versatile routing and switching of processed and unprocessed audio from and to OPTIMOD-PC’s inputs and outputs, and to and from the host computer’s WAVE audio.
Terminal Control API
For network or localhost control and automation of all I/O Mixer functions and Preset switching. Status is broadcast to all active clients.
Serial Control API
Allows OPTIMOD-PC to be controlled either by ASCII serial commands or by a serial-to–contact-closure device such as a Broadcast Tools SRC-16.
MS Windows Mixer API
Support in parallel to the existing Orban Mixer allows standard Microsoft Windows audio applications to control OPTIMOD PC’s inputs and outputs.
MS Windows Metering API
Windows applications using this API will display audio levels. (Many broadcast playout systems use this.)
Freescale DSPs
DSP chips do all the audio processing — there is no extra DSP load on your computer’s CPU, freeing more CPU cycles for encoding bit-reduced audio.
Full coprocessing
Coprocessing independent of the host computer’s CPU means that audio will ordinarily continue to pass through the card from its hardware inputs to its hardware outputs during a host computer soft reboot or crash. (Of course, Wave inputs and outputs will stop working because these are dependent on operating system services.)
Twenty standard presets
OPTIMOD-PC ships with over twenty standard presets, which correspond to different programming formats. These presets have already been tested and field-proven in major-market radio netcasting, digital radio, and direct satellite broadcasting applications (both radio and television) worldwide. There are also special-purpose presets for mastering, studio AGC, pure peak limiting and low bitrate encoding applications.
An easy-to-use
graphic control application
Runs on your PC and can act as a client to control any number of OPTIMOD-PC cards, either locally or in other PCs on your network via TCP/IP. The Orban software offers a server function, allowing other computers on your network to address cards located in your PC. (This server software is installed automatically as part of the OPTIMOD-PC installation process and runs as a Windows Service.)
Custom presets
The Control application allows you complete flexibility to create your own custom presets, to save as many as you want to your local hard drive and to recall them at will.
Orban ClockLock™ technology
ClockLock™ locks the 1101’s output sample rate to an external 10 MHz, word clock, or AES3/AES11 reference. Both AES3 outputs and WAV output can be locked, which prevents buffer underflows and overflows in downstream software and hardware. ClockLock uses a phase-locked loop with crystal VFO to ensure low jitter and will lock to 32, 44.1, 48, 88.2 and 96 kHz samplerates.
Adaptability through Multiple Audio Processing Structures
Multiple processing structures
A processing structure ss a program that operates as a complete audio processing system. Only one processing structure can be active at a time. Just as there are many possible ways of configuring a processing system using analog components (such as equalizers, compressors, limiters and clippers), there are several possible processing structures achievable by OPTIMOD-PC. OPTIMOD-PC realizes its processing structures as a series of high-speed mathematical computations made by Digital Signal Processing (DSP) chips.
Five-Band and Two-Band processing structures
OPTIMOD-PC features two processing structures: Five-Band (or Multiband) for a consistent, “processed” sound, free from undesirable side effects and Two-Band for a tastefully controlled sound that preserves the frequency balance of the original program material.
Protection Limiter
The Two-Band structure can also be tuned to operate as a Protection Limiter, providing up to 25 dB of safety limiting with minimal side effects.
Increased density and loudness
OPTIMOD-PC can increase the density and loudness of the program material by multiband compression and look-ahead limiting, remarcably improving sonic consistency while increasing loudness and definition, all without producing unpleasant side effects.

Smooth automatic gain riding

OPTIMOD-PC rides gain over an adjustable range of up to 25 dB, compressing dynamic range and compensating for operator gain-riding errors and for gain inconsistencies in automated systems.
Phase-linear processing structures
OPTIMOD-PC’s processing structures are all phase-linear to maximize audible transparency.
Change by smooth cross-fade
OPTIMOD-PC can be changed from one processing structure to another with a smooth cross-fade.
Two styles of stereo enhancement algorithms
The 1101 provides two different stereo enhancement algorithms. The first is based on Orban’s patented analog 222 Stereo Enhancer, which increases the energy in the stereo difference signal (L–R) whenever a transient is detected in the stereo sum signal (L+R). The second stereo enhancement algorithm passes the L–R signal through a delay line and adds this decorrelated signal to the unenhanced L–R signal. Gating circuitry prevents over-enhancement and undesired enhancement on slightly unbalanced mono material.
Two-Band automatic gain control
Two-Band automatic gain control with window gating and selectable L/R or sum/difference processing compensates for widely varying input levels.
Two-band and five-band compressors
With parametric soft-knee compression curves allow you to fine-tune the audio to your exact requirements and make OPTIMOD-PC an excellent mastering processor.
Low-delay monitoring path for talent headphones
The output of the two-band or five-band compressor can be routed directly to the card’s outputs, bypassing the delay in the look-ahead limiter and facilitating creation of a low-delay monitoring path for talent headphones.
Low-IM look-ahead limiter
Effectively limits peaks while ensuring that low-bit-rate codecs operate optimally without overload.
CBS Loudness Controller™
Limits subjective loudness to a preset threshold, making the 1101 an ideal processor in sound-for-picture applications by taming loud commercials before they annoy and alienate the audience. The Loudness Controller uses the 1981 Jones & Torick algorithm developed at CBS Technology Center and further refined by Orban.
Two independent loudness controllers and two loudness meters
CBS Loudness Meter™ measures the subjective loudness of the 1101’s output and is displayed in the 1101’s control application meter window. In dual-mono mode, there are two independent loudness controllers and two loudness meters available.
Transparently supports Dolby Digital® dialnorm metadata
If you tell the 1101 the dialnorm value you are sending to Dolby Digital receivers and use a “TV” processing preset, your transmission will automatically have the same loudness as other properly aligned Dolby Digital sources.

This makes the 1101 an excellent choice to process ATSC subchannels.

Very high quality peak limiting
A pure peak limiting preset is available. It allows the 1101 to perform very high quality peak limiting in mastering applications.
AGC functionality
OPTIMOD-PC can be used as for automatic gain control, AGC (including peak limiting) to protect a studio-to-transmitter link (STL), optimally using the STL’s native dynamic range.
Last updated:
Sep. 2012
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