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Cable Technology Feature Article

July 31, 2009

Entropic and Sigma to Develop HD, MoCA Complaint Set-Top-Box

By Nathesh, TMCnet Contributor

Entropic (News - Alert) Communications and Sigma Designs have entered into a partnership to develop high definition, MoCA complaint Cable TV and IPTV set-top-box reference designs.
The STB will be powered by Entropic's EN2510 and Sigma Designs' (News - Alert) SMP8654 and the reference designs are supposed to bring highly competitive, full-featured set-top box solutions to OEMs and service providers globally. The companies hope to fasten IP-Cable and IPTV (News - Alert) deployments worldwide with this STB collaboration.
Entropic Communications is a fabless semiconductor company that is engineering the future of connected home networking and entertainment. Sigma Designs is a fabless provider of highly integrated SoC solutions that are used to deliver multimedia entertainment throughout the home.
Entropic’ EN2510 enables a complete multimedia coaxial networking solution for at home distribution of multiple streams of high definition and standard definition audio/video, voice and broadband data. It offers convenience and cost savings by combining the coaxial network controller and RF transceiver into a single chip for complete MoCA 1.1 compliancy.
Sigma Designs’ SMP8654 is a multi-core processor that provides highly-integrated solutions for products requiring high-definition MPEG-4.10 (H.264), SMPTE 421M (VC-1), AVS, WMV9, MPEG-4.2 and MPEG-2 decoding. The Secure Media Processor (News - Alert) architecture offers advanced content protection, supporting a wide variety of Digital Rights Management (DRM) and Conditional Access (CA) solutions.
The Cable TV and IPTV STB reference designs that are based on EN2510 and SMP8654 are supposed to help realize a cost-effective IP network, capable of delivering outstanding HD video performance with higher quality of service over existing coaxial cabling.
The reference design can make use of the 175 Mbps of application layer throughput, 16 node support, parameterized quality of service and remote network diagnostic capability of the MoCA 1.1 standard to offer the necessary bandwidth and media processing for handling HD video in addition to other network traffic like transfer of personal files, music and other digital content.
According to Sigma, their OEMs and ODMs will accelerate the deployment of advanced IP-Cable and IPTV STBs by taking advantage of market-ready reference designs. Entropic's EN2510 single-chip MoCA solution used in their reference designs provides a strong solution for low-power, high-performance, and ‘no new wires' home network for distribution of IP video. The partnership with Entropic will help the company to offer higher quality solutions with faster time-to-market for the rapid deployment of MoCA enabled set-top boxes.
Entropic has stated that it anticipates increased operator interest in more advanced digital home networking solutions and with the help of innovative reference designs like the Sigma Designs' MoCA powered IP-Cable and IPTV STBs, service providers can offer higher bandwidth and a more robust home network while providing new services and generating higher Average Revenue Per User.
EchoStar Technologies had recently deployed Entropic’ RF4400 Silicon Tuner and Sigma had integrated Adobe Flash into Its SoC solutions.

Nathesh is a contributing editor for TMCnet. To read more of Nathesh's articles, please visit his columnist page.

Edited by Jessica Kostek