Application of HDMI 1.4 transceiver in home theater and combination sound bar


Due to the limitation of volume and thickness, the quality of most flat panel HDTV audio is not satisfactory. Equipped with a Home Theater in a Box (HTIB) and emerging soundbars (soundbars) is becoming a more popular solution to overcome this problem. As the size of flat-panel HDTVs continues to increase and prices continue to decrease, how to design and manufacture high-quality and low-cost integrated home theaters and soundbar speakers has become the biggest challenge for consumer electronics manufacturers. In this article, we discuss the development trend in the field of integrated home theater and sound bar combination speakers and some necessary functions such as fast switching between HDMI inputs. We also introduced and analyzed the application of Analog Devices (ADI) HDMI 1.4 transceiver (HDMI Transceiver) to design a low-cost, high-quality integrated home theater and sound bar combination speaker solution.


In the next one to two years, as prices continue to drop, large-screen ultra-thin high-definition TVs will become increasingly popular. This will bring a great technical challenge to TV manufacturers: the larger the screen, the higher the user's requirements for the sound theater effect. The thinner the body, the worse the effect of the horn, or the effect is better, and the cost of the thin horn will be high. Home theaters, including integrated home theater (HTIB) and soundbars that have emerged in recent years, are a better solution to this problem. In some cases, the integrated home theater and bar combination speakers are used in conjunction with large-screen high-definition TVs, so the overall design requires stylish design, easy installation, and simple wiring. We will summarize and discuss the main requirements and design trends of the audio and video of the integrated home theater and bar combination speakers.

All-in-one home theater (HTIB)

Home theater refers to a home movie playback system. It is generally composed of an audio and video player (DVD or blu-ray player) that supports multi-channel playback, a multi-channel power amplifier (A / V receiver or AVR), and a speaker system containing multiple speakers. The most basic speaker system should be 5.1 channels: front left / right speaker system, a center speaker system located in the middle of the front left and front right speaker systems, rear left / right (surround sound) speaker system, and a subwoofer speaker system .

All-in-one home theater sells these three systems in an integrated “bundle”. Its characteristics are that it does not require users to spend their energy on matching, the installation is relatively simple, there is better power matching between DVD, amplifier and speakers, most integrated home theaters are small in size, cheaper in price and stylish in design. So it is the best choice for general household.

The important aspect of home theater is hearing enjoyment. From the perspective of design characteristics, most low-cost AVRs (under $ 250) and HTIB only do audio without video processing.

Figure 1: Block diagram of a typical all-in-one home theater system

Sound Bar

With the widespread popularity of flat-screen high-definition televisions, the sound bar combination speakers are also growing rapidly. It is easy to use and install, cost-effective, stylish and novel in shape design and very compatible with the flat-screen TV shape. This makes the sound bar the best choice for enjoying high-quality sound with a flat-screen TV.

Most of the advanced bar combination speakers use multiple speakers and integrate surround decoding functions. In order to be able to support Blu-ray DVD players and game consoles, the recent bar combination speakers generally have several HDMI inputs and one output. The system block diagram is basically the same as the integrated home theater

Development trend and design challenges of video connection for integrated home theater and sound bar combination speakers

Since the integrated home theater and strip combination speakers are mainly used in combination with high-definition TVs, their audio and video input and output will be mainly HDMI in the future. From the current and development trends, HDMI for integrated home theater and sound bar combination speakers should have the following functions and features:

Three to four input ports for multiple HDMI sources (HD camera, Blu-ray DVD, HD set-top box, etc.)

One output connected to HDTV

It can support the Audio Return Channel in the HDMI1.4 specification.

Able to support 3D TV (3DTV) mode in HDMI1.4 specification

Able to support fast switching between HDMI inputs and fast reconnection between receiver and transmitter – Repeater Fast-switching

The biggest challenge in the design is the complicated software processing in the HDMI repeater and the compatibility between the receiver and transmitter. Another real challenge is not only limited to design, but to reduce system cost. This is also due to the pressure caused by the continued decline in the price of high-definition television.

In order to help the industry and customers to solve the above two problems and challenges, Analog Devices recently launched the world's first HDMI transceiver (HDMI transceiver)-ADV7623. Figure 2 is a simple schematic diagram of the HDMI transceiver (ADV7623). It integrates four HDMI 1.4 inputs and one HDMI 1.4 HDMI output and extracts the audio signal from the HDMI signal for system decoding processing. After the audio signal is decoded, it can be amplified and sent to the speaker or sent back to the ADV7623 and the original video to be recombined into an HDMI signal and then sent from the HDMI output of the ADV7623. In this way, the receiver and transmitter are integrated and there are four input ports. Therefore, a chip of the ADV7623 not only provides the functions originally provided by 2-3 chips, but also changes the work that was originally completed by a large amount of software to hardware. Plus to provide customers with a complete driver software program. This greatly reduces the design workload of customer system engineers.

Figure 2: Simple schematic of HDMI transceiver

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