In previous EMICON_FUN! articles we explained basic facts about inductors. In this next series of articles we will introduce inductor applied products.
Chapter 1: TV Tuner Innovations
Terrestrial analog broadcasting in Japan came to an end at noon on July 24, 2011, completing the switchover to an era of terrestrial digital broadcasting. This change marked a technical innovation for the broadcasting industry that rivaled or even surpassed the transition from black-and-white to color TV broadcasts many years ago. (This comparison may not mean much to readers younger than their mid-40s.)
In addition, this change to digital broadcasting is not limited to only Japan. Terrestrial digital broadcasting first entered service in England in 1998, and digital broadcasting is expanding rapidly around the world and becoming a huge market.
TV sets are also undergoing major technical innovations with this change to terrestrial digital broadcasting. Visible changes include the switch from using CRT tubes to high-definition, thin-panel plasma and LCD screens, and of course the start of 1-seg broadcasting that enables TV broadcasts to be viewed on mobile phones. (Mobilecasting (NOTTV), which is a form of multimedia broadcasting, is also scheduled to commence as a new broadcasting media in April 2012.)
On the other hand, important innovations have also been made in locations that cannot be seen. One of these is the tuner, which is the reception circuit that receives the terrestrial digital broadcasts. Most conventional tuners were tuner modules that combined a tuner IC known as an MOP (Mixer/Oscillator/PLL) and multiple LCR parts inside a metal case. However, CMOS process LSI for high-frequency applications have been practically applied in response to the move towards terrestrial digital broadcasting, and the main technical trend is currently towards silicon tuners that realize tuner functions using a single-chip IC with integrated functions. A major factor boosting innovation was that digitization of signals increased resistance to interference, for which analog broadcasting had received low marks. In addition, some tuners have shed the module format and developed into onboard tuners that are mounted directly on the main PCB of the TV.
Murata's "DXP series" and "DXW series" balun transformer products are essential parts for these silicon tuners, and have already been adopted and rated favorably by many set and module manufacturers.
The next articles will give detailed explanations of ultra-small balun transformers, dividers, and couplers.
Person in charge: Murata Manufacturing Co., Ltd. DTV GUY