Television mixers have historically been built with dedicated hardware to achieve a specific fixed functionality. As mixers have evolved from devices built with discrete transistors to more modern mixers with advanced large-scale integration (LSI) integrated circuits, a common limitation has been that these devices were built with fixed signal and data paths that pre-define the topology of the mixer. Thus, a mixer targeted for two mix/effects (M/Es) and two keyers per M/E is built specifically for that function, with limited or no future adaptability.
The Echolab Nova series completely breaks with tradition in this regard, moving to a completely reconfigurable platform based on a system-on-chip architecture. We used a single Xilinx® Virtex™-II Pro FPGA to create a completely reprogrammable video switching system. By
absorbing the interconnects of the mixer into a single FPGA, the limitations of a fixed signal path architecture have been removed, and the topology of the mixer can be redefined again and again throughout the life of the product.
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