Radio Audio Processor Falcon X6/X7 – Radio productsDecember 15, 2022
UHF four field antenna panelsDecember 15, 2022
AUDIO PROCESSOR FALCON X5
New generation of Audio Processors
The new generation of audio processors FALCON X5 continues in the tradition of quality, reliability and cost effectiveness, maintaining the name Falcon: renowned and valued in the broadcasting environment all around the world.
The new Falcon platform marks a clear break with the previous generation and offers cutting-edge technology that feats the ease of use, exceptional performances and unparalleled sound quality, allowing to generate a modern sound of the highest quality.
FALCON X5 features full connectivity with analog and digital audio I/O (over XLR connectors), 2 independent MPX outputs, USB, GPI and serial ports. The hardware bypass circuit is included in order to guarantee audio presence and programs continuity.
FALCON series has built-in some extra special-features.
The LAN port and the built-in Web Server allow to control the processor and tune audio from anywhere. The built-in digital Stereo Generator ensures an extremely precise MPX Signal. Composite Clipper, part of the Stereo Generator circuit, grant the maximum modulation level, according with the technical rules around the world. This allows each radio station to build their unique sound shape.
The optional embedded RDS Encoder performs a full digital processing, in compliance with RDS 2.0 (UECP SPB490), and provides 2 Data Sets with a wide range of static services, including Radio Text. The logging of output signal is a native feature and give many information about signals parameters. Stored information and time span can be customized and depend on the archiving size of the SD-Card or the USB flash drive.
Audio processing functions are all fully customizable: 5 bands compression control, adjustable drive and threshold, dual bands AGC, 3 bands equalization (Low, Mid and High frequency) and brightness control. The mono sounds phase control allows to give to the human voice a more natural and pleasant sound shape. The final limiter enhances the sound presence.
40 memories allow to recall factory pre-sets or save new one to be restored according to customer needs.
The FALCON X5 processors are equipped with a universal 90-260 V AC power supply, working at 50 or 60 Hz, ready to be used in every country around the world. Due to the low power consumption (max 15 W) FALCON X5 can be considered a “green” equipment.
The FALCON X5 robust design finds substance from the extensive use of steel. FALCON X5 appliances are immune to strong electro-magnetic fields and are suitable to be installed in extreme environments.
A dedicated digital test signal generator can send to all the physical outputs (analogue, digital and MPX) signal sample with variable frequency and amplitude, that helps to calibrate the whole audio system.
The Falcon X Series
Different users have different needs. This is the reason why AxelTech feature a whole processors family with various models suitable for specific workflows. FALCON X7 is the full option version while FALCON X6 is the same model but without the controls on the front panel, suitable to be remotely installed anytime we need to manage remotely the appliance via WEB interface.
FALCON X5, that includes the controls on the front panel, is the cost/effective version of the family.
The new FALCON audio processors integrate, as usual for AxelTech, many accessory features mandatory in the radio workflow – such as the RDS coding (optional) and Stereo Generation – but also looking at the innovative technologies – such as DAB and HD Radio.
FALCON series equipment ensures top quality performances and exclusive audio. It features powerful DPSs, 5-bands architecture, dual bands AGCs, 3-bands equalizer, stereo enhancer, speech detector and 5 limiters. The comprehensive and accurate control of each audio parameter allows to shape perfectly the audio to broadcast unique and exceptional branded sound.
COMPLETE SET OF INPUTS
1xAnalog, 2xAES/EBU, 2xMPX, 1xDante
COMPLETE SET OF OUTPUTS
1xAnalog, 2xAES/EBU, 2xMPX, 1xDante
(Simple Network Management Protocol)
Allows data interchange and simplified configuration of third-party appliances
connected in the same LAN using shared datasets MIB.
Optional Dynamic RDS fully supported, UECP Input implemented, 8 Datasets available.
Suitable for network infrastructures.
UPGRADEABLE AND RELIABLE
Internal SD card whit OS for Disaster Recovery.
Easily Upgradable via WEB or Windows application.
SAMPLING RATE FROM 32 kHz TO 192 kHz
WEB BASED CONTROL PANEL
The whole system can be managed through a WEB page generated by the internal web Server.
The main functions can be managed through the physical panel.
A configurable delay (from 0 to 10”) can be applied to the FM process in order to synch with those
distribution channels having a significant latency like the DAB.
15 KHz processing allows to use it as FM Audio Processor.
20 KHz processing for digital broadcasting, allows to use it as DAB Audio Processor, HD Radio Audio Processor, Sirius XM Audio Processor, Web Radio Audio Processor.
EBU R 128 and ITU-R BS.1770-4 Loudness Recommendations available for digital and analog radio processing chains compliant with every country loudness rules.
MPX LOUDNESS PROCESSING
ITU BS.412 MPX Power Loudness Recommendations available for MPX processing chains compliant with every country loudness rules.
DANTE AUDIO-OVER-IP CONNECTIVITY (Optional)
Dante option (also supporting AES67 and SMPTE ST 2110-30 transport protocols) provides an Ethernet connection for 1 Stereo Input and 1 Stereo Output, with independent and dedicated Level Control and Sample Rate Conversion.
RDS/RBDS ENCODER (Optional)
The RDS encoder is compliant with the major international standards:
UECP EBU SPB490 v7.05 and Cenelec in Europe and NRSC in the United States.
The new “dynamic” features allow to manage many kinds of services:
PS, RT, RT , PTY, PTYN. Connecting the Falcon with the radio automation software it can manage many
additional information such as song title, song artist, on-air program, speaker’s name, etc. The native
interface with RSS feed format allows receiving directly news feeds and it is RDS 2.0 ready.
REAL TIME AUDIO MONITOR
Processing delay is quite non audible and depends on the processing complexity.
Clarity of sound
FALCON processors high-quality hardware design and software algorithms produce a detailed, crystal clear sound on any speaker system, always preserving original audio signature.
A dedicated processing section boosts presence of voice delivering a soft, silky sounding effect. Vocals are always on top of the mix making lyrics comfortably audible. Each instrument and vocalist gains dominium of its own space.
FALCON processors deliver full impact sound at the highest volume density preserving original audio detail, identity and mood. The dedicated ‘Bass Enhancer’ stage delivers a strong and effective ‘drum punch’ for a deep musical emotion.
Here are the (processing) tools to make it sound as you like
Automatic Gain Control – AGC
Work Zone Release
Idle SpeedWork Zone Thresholdù
Mode, Band, Effect Limiter, Effect Drive, Effect Depth
Low Band, Mid Band, High Band
Threshold (for each of 5 bands)
Drive (for each of 5 bands)
Multiband Proc. Type
Final Limiter Bass Drive
Final Limiter Main Drive
Main/Bass Mix Balance
Limiters Look Ahead Detail
Wide Process Brilliance Attenuation
Audio Processing PresetsThe right sound for your radio in a few clicks, with our factory presets
Falcon processors are factory populated with 60 presets belonging to 10 families, allowing sound engineer to rapidly find the desired sound.
Each preset family has 6 different flavors:
EFX – Effect Extension
Compressed EFX – Effect Extension
Highly Compressed EFX – Effect Extension
This is a preset able to offer the maximum to a radio with a schedule made of music, news and talk.
Moderate AGC response, Mid/High density and compression.
The best preset for Ambient, Lounge, Chillout and Fusion music.
Very slow AGC, warm & detailed sound and a low compression.
Base preset for Rock and Classic Rock music. Mid compression and fast AGC.
Base preset for Hard Rock and Heavy Metal music. Low compression and fast AGC.
Base preset for Country and Folk music. Low compression and fast AGC.
Let’s dance, with this preset for Disco music. Low compression and fast AGC.
Base preset for Oldies music, with Low compression and fast AGC.
Typical preset for Talk radio and Talk programs, with low compression and fast AGC.
A very gentle preset suitable for Classical music and Opera, with low compression and fast AGC.
Designed for thematic radios focused on 70s-80s Pop music with, low compression and fast AGC
And then you can extend these presets by adding new families and variants
Signal Routing and Changeover
The new FALCON processor is able to switch between any available source: Analog, Digital, MPX, AoIP…
It’s possible to add up to 10 seconds delay to MPX output to synchronize DAB signal (connected to analogue or digital output) to FM signal connected to MPX output. An embedded Test Signals Generator allows to output an audio signal suitable for testing the equipment or the whole audio system.
FALCON Audio Processor new series features a complete set of input and outputs connections. Analog and AES/EBU digital audio connections are standard aside of two buffered and independent multiplexed output (MPX RDS) whit hardware bypass.
Analog Input > Analog Output | Digital1 Input > Digital1 Output | MPX1 Input > MPX1 Output | MPX2 Input > MPX2 Output
Three USB ports (one on the front, one on the rear panel and one installed on the internal circuit board), are available.
microSD allows to clone the whole setup from one Falcon to another one.
Two AUX inputs (SCA) allows to connect an external RDS encoder. Another AUX input can receive the audio from another MPX processor and switch with the internal generated MPX, allowing to build a small network managed from radio automation system. Connection setup includes a Dante license that allows to manage AoIP Dante or AE67 signals: 4 inputs and 4 outputs.
FALCON X5 features a wide LCD monitor, TFT Technology (480×128) that shows the input and output processing, including the corrections for each band featured from the compressor, the limiters and the multiband AGC.
Obviously it shows also the input and output of all signal levels.
Moreover trough the display it’s possible to check the system status: operating parameters, GPI/O port status and RDS parameters, including the station’s ID.
A TRS (stereo Jack 6,3 mm) connector allows monitoring both original and processed signal, checking in the faster way the differences between the available pre-sets.
Communications & Alarms
FALCON audio processors can exchange information with other equipment through some communication ports:
One LAN/WAN port, two RS-232 serial ports, two USB ports, one GPIO port with optical coupler and relays.
Information will be sent (status, alarms) or received (commands).
A panel with 40 LEDs (the LCD panel in the bigger model) shows status information.
Alarm messages can be sent via GPO, SNMP (Trap), http and email.
Users can manage FALCON equipment via LAN, no need to install any client software.
The internal Web Server can be managed with any browsers (Chrome, Firefox, Explorer, Opera…). The GUI on the web page is clear, easy to use and responsive, suitable to be managed from any device: Personal Computers, tablets, smartphones.
SNMP (v 2.0) programming protocol allows to manage the whole command set.
FALCON firmware implements also HTTP, FTP, SNMP, SMTP, UDP, TCP and is PV4 – IPV6 addressing compliant. RDS services need a precise synchronization: the system tries to connect to a primary NTP, backup NTP and to an external GPS receiver (not supplied).
Moreover connecting an external GPS allows to geo-localize the FALCON. The WEB server supplies a page with a map that shows the appliance position.
Standard Ethernet interface can manage up to 4 independent TCP ports, up to 4 separate UDP ports and 1 SNMP port. Obviously, it shows also the input and output of all signal levels.
MPX Stereo Generator
The stereo generator integrated in the DSP structure, provides an almost ideal MPX signal, optimizing the performances of the equipment to the maximum.
All of the parameters for pilot level, phase and levels are adjustable via the web page.
Stereo Generator circuit can switch the source between the internal MPX and an external signal. Switch can be managed locally or with a command sent by an external radio automation software via Ethernet or GPI.
Data System Encoder (Optional)
FALCON RDS embedded circuit is compliant with the latest standards:
UECP EBU SPB490 v7.05, Cenelec (Europe) and NRSC (USA).
The new “dynamic” feature allows to manage many kinds of services:
PS, RT, RT , PTY, PTYN.
Connecting the RDS with the radio automation software it can show many kinds of information: song title, song artist, on-air program, speaker’s name, etc.
The native interface with RSS feed format (RSS 2.0) allows receiving directly news feed
The internal RDS embedding give more advantages:
> Allows to remove a separate appliance from the transmission chain
> Concentrate the control of all the broadcasting parameters just in one equipment
> Raise the output signal signal/noise ratio and stability
> Remove all the locking problems between the pilot phase and the RDS carrier phase
Analog Input – AUDIO
Number of Inputs 1 Stereo
Connectors: 2 XLR, female – Electronically balanced – EMI Suppression
A/D Conversion: 24bit Sigma-Delta Conversion (Crystal CS4272)
AD Clipping Point 24.0 dBu
Operative Nominal Level From –12.0dBu to 13.0dBu (0.1dBu Step) Software adjustable
Line Impedance 10 kΩ (Electronically balanced selectable)
Distortion Less than 0.01% TDH NOISE (0.0 dBu 1Khz)
AD Dynamic Range 108 dB RMS (110 dB A weighted)
Input Modes Stereo, Mono (Left), Mono (Right), Mono (Left Right)
CMRR input >60 dB (20 Hz to 20 kHz)
FM Frequency range 5 Hz-15 kHz ( /- 0,5dB when processing is disabled)
DAB Frequency range 5 Hz-20 kHz ( /- 0,5dB when processing is disabled)
Digital Input – AUDIO
Inputs Number 2 (1st for audio, 2nd for audio or Digital MPX)
Connectors XLR, female – Electronically balanced– EMI Suppression
Input impedance 110 Ω
Sample rate 32 kHz / 44.1 kHz / 48 kHz /96 kHz / 192 kHz with src and jitter attenuation
Operative Nominal level From 0.0 dBFs to -25.0 dBFs (0.1 dBu step) Software adjustable
Dynamic Range 125 dB (Typical), 122 dB (Minimal)
Distortion Less than 0.01% TDH NOISE (0.0 dBu 1Khz)
Input Modes Stereo, Mono (Left), Mono (Right), Mono (Left Right)
Conversion dynamic range 124 dB (32 KHz) | 126 dB (44,1 kHz) | 126 dB (48 kHz) 122 dB (96 kHz)
Conversion resolution 24 bits
FM Frequency range 2 Hz-15 kHz ( /- 0,025dB when processing is disabled)
DAB Frequency range 2 Hz-20 kHz ( /- 0,025dB when processing is disabled)
Connectors Unbalanced on 2 BNC – EMI Suppression
Input impedance 50 KΩ
Adjustable Nominal Input Level (Sensitivity) -6 dB to 13,0 dB (0.1 dBu step) Software adjustable
Max Input Level 18,0 dBu
A/D Conversion Texas PCM4220
Analog Output AUDIO
Output Number 1
Connectors 2 XLR, female – Electronically balanced – EMI Suppression
D/A Conversion 24 bit Sigma-Delta Conversion (Crystal CS4272)
Output Level -6.0 dBu to 20.0 dBu (0.1 dBu Step)
Output Level Max. 24,0 dBu
Impedance Source 10 Ω
Load Impedance 600 Ω or greater
THD Noise Less than 0.01% (0.0dBu @ 1 kHz)
Signal to noise Ratio >80 dB unweight – 100% Mod. 20 Hz–15 KHz
L/R CrossTalk < –70 dB, 20 Hz–15 KHz Pre-emphasis OFF, 50 µsec, 75 µsec FM Frequency range 5 Hz-15 kHz ( /- 0,5dB when processing is disabled) DAB Frequency range 5 Hz-20 kHz ( /- 0,5dB when processing is disabled) Digital Output AUDIO Outputs Number 2 (1st for audio, 2nd for audio or Digital MPX) Connectors Balanced on 1 XLR – EMI Suppression Format AES3/EBU Output impedance 110 Ω Sample rates 32 kHz / 44.1 kHz / 48 kHz / 96 kHz / 192 kHz Software selectable Resolution 24 bit Operative Nominal level From 0.0 dBFs to -30dBFs (0.1 dBu step) Dynamic Range 125 dB (Typ), 122 dB (Min) Distortion Less than 0.01% TDH NOISE (0.0 dBu 1 Khz) Pre-emphasis OFF, 50 µsec, 75 µsec FM Frequency range 2 Hz-15 kHz ( /- 0,025 dB when processing is disabled) DAB Frequency range 2 Hz-20 kHz ( /- 0,025 dB when processing is disabled) MPX OUTPUT Connectors Unbalanced on 2 BNC – EMI Suppression Source impedance 10 Ω Load impedance 600 Ω or greater Maximum Load Capacitance 5 nF D/A Conversion Texas PCM 1796 Composite output level -6,0 dB to 13,0 dB (0,1 dBm step) Max Output Level 18.0 dBm Mod Power Limiter Adjustable from -1.0 dB to 12 dB according to ITU-R BS.412 Pilot Frequency 19 KHz /- 1 Hz Pilot Level -25.5 to -14.0 dB in 0.1 dB/Step – Ref 100% Mod Pilot Stability 19 kHz, ± 1 Hz Pilot Phase Adjustable /- 12 degrees, 1 degree step Pilot THD Noise 0.03% (TDH 0.002%) Stability /-10 ppm (-10 to 55 °C) Signal-to-Noise Ratio (S/N) > 85 dB on a 60 kHz Bandwidth, referenced to 100% modulation, unweighted
Distortion <= 0.01% THD – Bypass mode, de-emphasized, 20 Hz – 15 kHz bandwidth, referenced to 100% modulation, unweighted Stereo Separation Greater than 70 dB, 30 Hz – 15 kHz Linear Crosstalk > -80 dB – main channel to sub-channel or sub-channel to main channel referenced to 100% modulation
38 kHz Suppression > 70 dB (referenced to 100% modulation)
Pilot Protection > 65 dB relative to 10% pilot injection, ± 500 Hz.
Crosstalk M/S > 80 dB
Crosstalk S/M > 80 dB
MPX clipping & limiting Based on look-ahead techniques
RDS/RBDS Protection Better than -55 dB @ 56kHz, better than – 65dB@57 kHz (MPX Clipper Disabled)
Pre-emphasis OFF, 50 µsec, 75 µsec
MPX Modes Stereo, Mono, L R, L-R, Pilot only, No Pilot
MPX Clipper On/Off and adjustable 95% to 105 %, 1% step
Dimensions 485 x 44 x 240 mm (1 rack unit)
AC Rate Voltage 230Vac / 110Vac /- 10% – 30VA – Connector IEC 3-Wire detachable
AC Frequency 50 Hz / 60 Hz /- 4%
Power factor 0,9
Processing architecture Fully digital, based on DSP 24bit/250Mhz.
5 band Signal processing
Weight 3,5 Kg
Operating temperature -5°C / 50°C up to 95% non condensing
Max Altitude Up to 3000 meters above marine level
Safety Standard CE, ETL, UL
RFI Falcon X/D has been designed to work in strong RF Fields and it is provided with Standard RFI filters. Necessary RFI filters are standard and same are provided.
Grounding One more earth terminal is provided in the Falcon X/D body to connect audio earth connection
RDS FEATURES (Optional)
RDS Level adjustment Digitally controlled
Phase adjustment Yes, 0 ÷ 359.9°
RDS Subcarrier 100% Digitally Generated Shape
CENELEC – EN50067 compliant Yes
Accurate Clock Time (CT) Sync with Internet Connection Yes
Remote TA actuation for Traffic Announcements Yes
GPS module for automatic synchronisation of the built-in Real Time Clock (RTC) Optional external via USB
Group Supported All
Group Sequence Configurable
PS 8 DSN x MAIN 10 PSN
PI 8 DSN x MAIN 10 PSN
PIN & PTY RDS/RBDS
AF Method A up to 1024 (64 lists)
AF Method B up to 1024 (64 lists)
RT Yes, 32 messages
RT rate adjustment Group Sequence
RT for songs and content tagging Yes
TA Control Command, Soft, GPI
EON 10 PSN
TMC, EWS, IH, TDC Yes
Free Format Groups (FFG) Yes
Open Data Application (ODA) Yes
PS Scrolling Yes
Scrolling by characters, by word, auto centre, truncate long words Yes (Characters – from 1 up to 8)
Connection with radio automation: Software Yes
Network connectivity 4 TCP ports / 4 UDP / 1 SNMP
Configuration software Web Server, FTP
Password protection Yes
ASCII Protocol Configuration messages
REST Command Yes
Alert notifications on user-defined events via SNMP traps or E-mails Yes
Embedded SNMP agent permitting: active management tasks Yes
Supported Network Protocols HTTP, SNTP, UDP, TCP, NTP, FTP
UECP Protocol EBU SPB490 Ver. 7.05
PI Calculator Yes
RDS 2.0 Ready Yes
Remote interface GPIn 6x GP In optocoupled
Remote interface GPOut 4x Relays – dry contacts
Remote interface connector DB 25 female connector – EMI suppressed
Remote interface GPIO Voltage and Current DC 5V Source and Sink 10 mA
Communication Port 2 x RS232, 3 x USB, 1 x LAN
Serial Interfaces 1st RS232 on DB9 female connector – EMI suppressed
2nd RS232 on DB25 female connector – EMI suppressed
Firmware can be upgraded in the field Yes
Front-panel Colour TFT Display No (Falcon X6) / Yes (Falcon X5, X7)
Data may be entered on-site with Front-panel Buttons No (Falcon X6) / Yes (Falcon X5, X7)
Front Panel LEDs 40