Orban Optimod 6300 Audio Processor

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The Orban 6300 is a high-quality, multipurpose stereo audio processor for digital radio, digital television, netcasts, STL protection, satellite uplink protection, and digital mastering. With 20 kHz audio bandwidth, the 6300 succeeds Orban’s popular OPTIMOD-DAB 6200 audio processor but offers improved processing algorithms and more flexibility.

Orban’s new PreCode™ technology manipulates several aspects of the audio to minimize artifacts caused by low bitrate codecs, ensuring consistent loudness and texture from one source to the next. There are several factory presets tuned specifically for low bitrate codecs.

In sound-for-picture applications, the 6300’s built-in CBS Loudness Controller™ tames source-to-source loudness variations, ensuring consistency and maximizing audience satisfaction.

Because the look-ahead peak limiting technology used in the 6300 performs optimally with “flat” transmission channels (like almost all digital channels), the 6300 cannot provide loudness processing for pre-emphasized radio channels. Use one of Orban’s Optimod-FM processors for this application. For analog television with FM aural carrier(s), use Optimod-TV 8382.


Because of its versatile signal routing, the 6300 can be used as a combined studio AGC, digital radio/digital television/netcast processor, and low-delay talent headphone processor. Any of its three outputs (stereo analog x1; AES2 digital x2) can emit any of the following signals:

Stereo enhancement, equalization, and AGC without look-ahead peak limiting
Stereo enhancement, equalization, and AGC with peak limiting
Stereo enhancement, equalization, and multiband processing (2-band or 5-band, including AGC) without peak limiting
Stereo enhancement, equalization, and multiband processing (2-band or 5-band, including AGC) with peak limiting
In a typical application:
The 6300 substitutes for the AGC in an Optimod at the transmitter and provides protection limiting for the STL. Digital output #1 emits the peak-limited output of the AGC to drive the STL. The AGC is turned off in the transmitter-side Optimod.
The 6300’s AGC uses the same dual-band, window-gated, matrix technology as the AGCs in Orban’s 2300, 5300, 8300, 8382, 8400, 8500, 9300, and 9400 Optimods. It can therefore accurately substitute for the AGCs in these devices and can help maintain an all-digital signal path throughout the facility. Because the 6300’s AGC is more advanced than the AGCs in Orban’s 2200, 8200, and 9200 Optimods, the 6300 can upgrade the performance of these older products when substituted their AGCs.

Moreover, because the 6300 supports presets that be recalled by remote control, it can be automatically synchronized to the presets on-air at a transmitter-side Optimod when presets are dayparted.

The 6300’s multiband processing is based on the technology used in Optimod-FM 8500’s digital radio processing path and will sound similar. To help you match the sound of an 8400 or 8500, the 6300 provides presets with the same names as those in Optimod-8400 and 8500. If you are using a factory preset at a transmitter-side 8400 or 8500, you can recall a preset with the same name in the 6300 to ensure that the sound stays the same as it would if you were using an 8400 or 8500 with its internal AGC.

Digital output #2 emits a peak-limited, multiband-processed signal to drive a netcast encoder (like Orban’s Opticodec-PC), a digital radio transmitter, or a digital television transmitter.
The analog output emits a low-delay (~5 ms) multiband-processed signal with no peak limiting to drive talent headphones at the studio. This is particularly useful in HD Radio™ facilities, where off-air headphone monitoring is impossible due to delay.
The 6300’s two independent stereo look-ahead limiters can be switched to operate either “flat” or on a 50µ­s or 75µ­s pre-emphasis curve to protect a pre-emphasized path like a typical analog microwave STL.

Technical Specification


Specifications apply for measurements from analog left/right input to analog left/right output.

Frequency Response (Bypass Mode): Depending on settings, is flat or follows standard 50µs or 75µs preemphasis curve ±0.10 dB, 20 Hz-20 kHz. (At 32 kHz input sample rate, the passband is reduced to approximately 14.7 kHz.) Analog left/right output and digital output can be user-configured for flat or pre-emphasized output.

Noise: Output noise floor will depend upon how much gain the processor is set for (Limit Drive, AGC Drive, Two-Band Drive, and/or Multiband Drive), gating level, equalization, noise reduction, etc. The dynamic range of the A/D Converter, which has a specified overload-to-noise ratio of 110 dB, primarily governs it. The dynamic range of the digital signal processing is 144 dB.

Total System Distortion (de-emphasized, 100% modulation): <0.01% THD, 20 Hz-1 kHz, rising to <0.05% at 20 kHz. <0.02% SMPTE IM Distortion.

Polarity (Two-Band and Bypass Modes): Absolute polarity maintained. Positive-going signal on input will result in positive-going signal on output.

Processing Resolution: Internal processing has 24 bit (fixed point) or higher resolution; uses four 150 MHz Motorola DSP56367 DSP chips. All equalizers and crossovers use double-precision arithmetic to achieve mastering-quality processing.

Internal Processing Sample Rate: 48 kHz. Although this rate is not currently fashionable, we believe that it is optimum, pro-audio marketing spin to the contrary. No bias-controlled listening tests (i.e., double-blind with matched levels) have demonstrated that humans can hear the difference between 48 kHz and higher sample rates. Meanwhile, the double-precision equalizers and crossover filters used throughout the 6300 produce at least 6 dB lower noise and nonlinear distortion than they would at 96 kHz.

Delay: The minimum available input/output delay is approximately 23 ms, as determined by the advanced “look-ahead” processing algorithms employed. This can be padded to exactly one frame of 24, 25, 29.97, or 30 frames/second video and can also be adjusted in 1 ms intervals up to 60 ms. The input/output delay to the Headphone Monitor output is approximately 5 ms. (This output has no peak limiting applied to it.)

Operating mode: Stereo or dual-mono. In dual-mono mode, both processing channels have the same subjective adjustments (as determined by the active preset) but are otherwise independent, making this mode appropriate for dual-language processing.


Analog Audio Input

Configuration: Stereo / Dual-Mono.

Impedance: >10kω load impedance, electronically balanced.

Nominal Input Level: Software adjustable from -4.0 to +13.0 dBu (VU).

Maximum Input Level: +27 dBu.

Connectors: Two XLR-type, female, EMI-suppressed. Pin 1 chassis ground, Pins 2 (+) and 3 electronically balanced, floating and symmetrical.

A/D Conversion: 24 bit 128x oversampled delta sigma converter with linear-phase anti-aliasing filter.

Filtering: RFI filtered, with high-pass filter at 0.15 Hz (-3 dB).

Analog Audio Output

Configuration: Stereo. Flat or pre-emphasized (at 50µs or 75µs), software-selectable.

Source Impedance: 50ω, electronically balanced and floating.

Load Impedance: 600ω or greater, balanced or unbalanced. Termination not required or recommended.

Output Level (100% peak modulation): Adjustable from -6 dBu to +24 dBu peak, into 600ω or greater load, software-adjustable.

Signal-to-Noise: >= 90 dB unweighted (Bypass mode, de-emphasized, 20 Hz-15 kHz bandwidth, referenced to 100% modulation).

L/R Crosstalk: <= -70 dB, 20 Hz-15 kHz.

Distortion: <= 0.01% THD (Bypass mode, de-emphasized) 20 Hz-15 kHz bandwidth.

Connectors: Two XLR-type, male, EMI-suppressed. Pin 1 chassis ground, Pins 2 (+) and 3 electronically balanced, floating and symmetrical.

D/A Conversion: 24 bit 128x oversampled.

Filtering: RFI filtered.

Digital Audio Input

Configuration: Stereo or Two-Channel (dual-mono) per AES3 standard, 24 bit resolution, software selection of stereo or dual-mono. Unit can detect Stereo or Two-Channel status bits and switch modes appropriately.

Sampling Rate: 32, 44.1, 48, 88.2, or 96 kHz, automatically selected.

Connector: XLR-type, female, EMI-suppressed. Pin 1 chassis ground, pins 2 and 3 transformer balanced and floating, 110ω impedance.

Input Reference Level: Variable within the range of -30 dBFS to -10 dBFS.

J.17 Deemphasis: Software-selectable.

Filtering: RFI filtered.

Digital Audio Output

Configuration: Stereo or Two-Channel per AES3 standard. Output configured in software as flat or pre-emphasized to the chosen processing preemphasis (50µs or 75µs), with or without J.17 preemphasis.

Sample Rate: Internal free running at 32, 44.1, 48, 88.1 or 96 kHz, selected in software. Can also be synced to the AES3 digital input at 32, 44.1, 48, 88.1 or 96 kHz, as configured in software. (Passband is limited to approximately 14.7 kHz when using 32 kHz output sample rate.)

Word Length: Software selected for 24, 20, 18, 16 or 14-bit resolution. First-order highpass noise-shaped dither can be optionally added, Dither level automatically adjusted appropriately for the word length.

Connector: XLR-type, male, EMI-suppressed. Pin 1 chassis ground, pins 2 and 3 transformer balanced and floating, 110ω impedance.

Output Level (100% peak modulation): -20.0 to 0.0 dBFS software controlled.

Filtering: RFI filtered.

Sync Input

Configuration: Can accept wordclock or AES11id (75ω) sync, selectable in software.

Connector: Female BNC.

Termination: Unterminated. For wordclock, use an external 75ω terminator if the 6300 is the last item in the chain. For AES11id, always use a 75ω terminator.

Remote Computer Interface

Configuration: TCP/IP protocol via direct serial cable connect, modem, or Ethernet interface. Modem is not supplied.

Serial Port: 115 kbps RS-232 port dB-9 male, EMI-suppressed.

Ethernet Port: 100 Mbit / sec on RJ45 female connector.

Remote Control (GPI) Interface

Configuration: Eight (8) inputs, opto-isolated and floating.

Voltage: 6-15V AC or DC, momentary or continuous. 9VDC provided to facilitate use with contact closure.

Connector: DB-25 male, EMI-suppressed.

Control: User-programmable for any eight of user presets, factory presets, bypass, test tone, stereo or mono modes, analog input, digital input.

Filtering: RFI filtered.


Voltage: 100-264 VAC, 50-60 Hz, 40 VA.

Connector: IEC, EMI-suppressed. Detachable 3-wire power cord supplied.

Grounding: Circuit ground is independent of chassis ground, and can be isolated or connected with a rear panel switch.

Safety Standards: ETL listed to UL standards, CE marked.


Operating Temperature: 32º to 122º F / 0º to 50º C for all operating voltage ranges.

Humidity: 0-95% RH, non-condensing.

Dimensions (W x H x D): 19″ x 3.5″ x 14.25″ / 48.3 cm x 8.9 cm x 36.2 cm. Two rack units high.

Humidity: 0-95% RH, non-condensing.

RFI / EMI: Tested according to Cenelec procedures. FCC Part 15 Class A device.

Shipping Weight: 19 lbs / 8.7 kg

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