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Harris Broadcast, Broadcast Partners complete DAB+ for the Netherlands

Nationwide deployment includes more than 30 Maxiva VAX transmitters with web-enabled IP-based controlrn

Harris Broadcast, a provider of content management and network infrastructure solutions, and Broadcast Partners, a supplier of professional radio broadcast products and services, have completed the Netherlands’ transition to all-digital radio. Harris Broadcast and Broadcast Partners deployed the nationwide digital audio broadcasting plus (DAB+) solution in a record three months, which included more than 30 Harris Broadcast Maxiva VAX transmitters with web-enabled IP-based control and monitoring from the head-end to the transmission stage.

With the government mandate to move to full national digital radio coverage by 2017, commercial broadcasters saw business advantages in accelerating their programme, appointing Broadcast Partners to design, build and run the digital network. Working with Harris Broadcast, the broadcasters were able to meet their targeted date to have the complete network up and running.

“The timescale on this project was enormously challenging, and Harris Broadcast quickly rose to the occasion to ensure that the transition was a success,” says Robert-jan van der Hoeven, Broadcast Partners. “Based on a proven, robust VHF transmission platform, the Maxiva VAX transmitter is well-recognised for being a category-leader in power efficiency and extended power range. The complete network is now fully on air and is the first nationwide radio service relying entirely on IP connectivity for the transmission feeds – a result of Harris Broadcast’s deep IP expertise and advanced capabilities of the transmission equipment.”

For maximum flexibility and resilience, Broadcast Partners elected to deliver all content from the head-end to the transmitters over IP. The design of the Maxiva VAX transmitter allowed it to be fitted with an integral IP/EDI input card, which is unique to the Harris Broadcast solution. This allows transport of the audio programme via high-speed internet instead of traditional cable.

“We are thrilled to see our technology at work in the world’s first national DAB+ deployment,” says Pablo Gargiulo, President of Global Sales at Harris Broadcast. “Broadcasting today is a fast-moving business, and the advanced modular design of our new generation transmitters enables flexible configurations, new functionality such as IP connectivity, and low total cost of ownership. This also enabled our teams to react quickly to meet the customers’ complex project requirements.”