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  1. 1. 34 35TELE-audiovision International — The World‘s Largest Digital TV Trade Magazine — 03-04/2013 — — 03-04/2013 — TELE-audiovision International — 全球发行量最大的数字电视杂志• Perfect Integration in a PC andperfect functioning with all well-known TV applications• Independent operation of thetwo built-in tuners• Professional Blindscan possibletogether with CrazyScan• Can also control motors,polarizers and multiswitches• Features an integrated CImodule for use with CAMsTBS 6991TEST REPORT Twin Tuner Multimedia PC Satellite Card
  2. 2. 03-04/ TELE-audiovision International — The World‘s Largest Digital TV Trade Magazine — 03-04/2013 — www.TELE-audiovision.comThe Ideal Satellite Cardfor Multimedia and DXTEST REPORT Twin Tuner Multimedia PC Satellite CardAs is standard, the TBS6991 is shipped in a blackpackage that also includesa remote control, an IR re-ceiver, a power adapter cableand a mini CD. Installing thecard presents no problems; itcan be inserted in any avail-able PCI-e slot, regardless ifit’s PCI-e x1, x4, x8 or x16.As expected from TBS, thecard was perfectly fabricated.In just seconds we were ableTBS 6991Perfect TV card for watching TV;ideal for DXers and satellite professionalsguarantee that enough poweris be available for more com-plex satellite systems suchas with a rotor, polarizer,multiswitch, etc. Since threeMolex connectors from thepower supply are necessary,we had to figure out where toget them from; our test com-puter only had one free Molexconnector. For our tests weunplugged two Molex con-nectors from the hard drives.Everything was working mag-nificently but it didn’t takelong for the missing harddrives to become noticeable;some files that were neededwere on these hard drives.Therefore we decided to op-erate the TBS 6991 withoutThe Ideal Satellite Cardfor Multimedia and DX:Nothing Left Out with itsTwin Tuners and Two CISlotsIf the term TBS doesn’tmean anything to you, youmissed the last issue of TELE-audiovision. The develop-ments at TBS (also know asTenow) are running at a highpace; there are always newTV cards being introducedthat cover every possiblemarket niche. In the last is-sue we introduced two DVB-Creceivers, the TBS 6618 forPCI-e and the TBS 5860 asan external USB box. In the10-11/2011 issue we testedright away four TBS TV cardsincluding the TBS 6984 withan incredible four tuners!The new TBS 6991 comeswith two tuners as did theTBS 6981 (tested in the 12-01/2011 issue) but this timethe card also comes with twoCI slots. Especially interest-ing is the chip in use: theTMAX TAS2100. Obviouslythere are two of them sincethis is a twin tuner card. Eventhough the card only take upone PCI-e slot, it will oper-ate like two separate DVB-S/S2 cards in the system. Whatmakes this chip so special?It’s very simple: it makesreal Blindscans possible andis supported 100% by theCrazyScan software. More onthat screw the cabinet shut.The power adapter cable in-cluded as part of the acces-sories is connected to threeof the Molex connectors onthe power supply. This shouldthe additional power sourcesand everything worked finewith the exception of mo-tor control. In a further test
  3. 3. 38 39TELE-audiovision International — The World‘s Largest Digital TV Trade Magazine — 03-04/2013 — — 03-04/2013 — TELE-audiovision International — 全球发行量最大的数字电视杂志The TBS 6991 with CrazyScanwe connected only one ofthe Molex connectors to theadapter cable and discoveredthat we could now operate ourmotorized antenna withoutany problems. This antennaactually consisted of two mo-tors, a DiSEqC switch and aTwin LNB. Clearly more poweris needed for this set up thanwith a simple antenna.Under Windows the TBSmatic configuration, insteadit simply loads the desiredchannel list from the Inter-net. In this way you don’thave to wait and you can onlyhope that Microsoft managesto keep the channel lists of allthe different satellites up todate. But you can also per-form a channel scan. Herefigured settings for the vari-ous TV applications so thatnearly all common programsare perfectly harmonizedwith the remote control with-out the need to do anythingelse. We liked this conceptsince we’ve already often ex-perienced problems with thecommon LIRC.There are two TV applica-tions on the mini CD that areavailable for installation: TBSViewer and DVB Dream. TheTBS Viewer is actually an OEMversion of the DVB Viewer. Itsfunctional capability is some-what limited compared to theInstead we tested the TBS6991 with ProgDVB and withthe full version of DVBViewer.The TBS 6991 worked verynicely with all of the testedTV applications and evenfunctions such as DiSEqC 1.2,which can bring some othercards to its knees, did notproduce any problems.If you’re in the market for aTwin Tuner satellite card for aPC, the TBS 6991 would be agood choice. It is compatiblewith all of the more commonsoftware programs, has anexcellent remote control andwith the two CI slots you can6991 is linked without anyproblems to the system BDAdrivers and Device Manageridentifies this correctly as“TBS6991 Dual DVBS/S2 BDATuners & CI”. Setup and in-stallation is therefore com-pleted in just five minutes – itshould always be like this!Thanks to the BDA drivers,the card can be used instant-ly with nearly all TV applica-tions, such as, DVB Dream,TBS Viewer, ProgDVB or Win-dows Media Center. Duringtesting of the DVB-C cardswe ran into some problemswith the scan (see the test re-port in the 01-02/2013 issue)although we didn’t have thisproblem with DVB-S/S2.First we tried Windows Me-dia Center (WMC) with thenewly installed TBS 6991. Thistime the channel list could im-mediately be displayed and itonce again became clear whythere were so many problemswith DVB-C cards: WMC doesnot perform a scan with auto-you can choose between anautomatic scan of all tran-sponders (the transponderlist is not available to theuser) or a scan of a manuallyentered transponder. Onceagain WMC attempts to makeit as easy as possible in thatyou only need to enter in thefrequency and symbolrate ofThe TBS 6991 with TBS Viewertions for communicating withthe CAMs and the insertedSmartcards, this task is han-dled by the TBS MCE CI Toolthat runs in its own window.All of our CAMs were correct-ly recognized although, asexpected, the HD+ CAM didnot do its job since we’re notdealing here with a certifiedCI receiver.WMC can be described injust a few words: it works andit’s intuitive. All functions aresupported and especially theEPG, Timeshift and Record-ing functions are nicely im-plemented. This is obviouslynot the design of a single pro-grammer, rather it’s the workof an entire design team.As we have come to ex-pect from TBS, the includedremote control is integratedwith its own software thattranslates the remote intokeyboard buttons. The TB-SVHID tool contains precon-full version of the DVB View-er and comes with a slightlyaltered user interface thatcarries the TBS logo. Never-theless, this software is verygood for watching TV.DVB Dream is installed asa Demo version. Comparedto the full version, quite a fewfunctions are missing in theDemo version so we decidednot to look at it any PayTV channels eventhrough the Windows MediaCenter as long as you use anappropriate CAM and Smart-card. We were even able tooperate two different TV ap-plications at the same timeby simply configuring the twotuners properly.For us though, using thiscard to merely watch TVwould have been shame-a transponder.A special application isavailable on the included miniCD that will allow the CAMsand associated Smartcardsinserted in the CI slots to alsobe used under WMC. Sincethe WMC has no special func-
  4. 4. 40 TELE-audiovision International — The World‘s Largest Digital TV Trade Magazine — 03-04/2013 — www.TELE-audiovision.comful. DXers, feedhunters andtechies would definitely gettheir money’s worth with theTBS 6991. Both of the tunersare actually blindscan-com-patible tuners. They can iden-tify if there’s a signal on thecurrent frequency and, if so,it will automatically recognizereception parameters such asmodulation, symbolrate andFEC.A blindscan is especially in-teresting with satellites thatare used for feeds, that is,live transmissions from mo-bile broadcasting units. Justlike “train spotting”, it can bequite a lot of fun receiving rawvideo material. Sometimes itcould even be unedited livetransmissions like sportingor music events and then itcould also be a news reporterpassing the time while wait-ing for his live news broad-casting segment. Once in awhile you’ll even catch someentertaining bloopers. Sincethese feeds are not normallytransmitted on a regular ba-sis and typically always usea different frequency eachtime, a blindscan and a spec-trum analysis are worth theirweight in gold. Unfortunately,measurement equipment likethis can be prohibitive for anormal hobbyist and that’swhy we’re so excited aboutthe TBS 6991. Several ap-plications make possible nearprofessional quality analysisof the frequency band for sat-ellite TV.TBS has provided a pro-gram on the mini CD thatperforms a blindscan thatwill find every transponderand channel on its own in ashort amount of time with-out the use of any predefinedtransponder list. After we in-stalled this tool from the miniCD, we wanted to try it our,but the TBS blindscan an-nounced rather sternly thatthe available tuner is not sup-ported. After fussing arounda little bit, we found a newerversion for the TBS 6991 onthe TBS website. After unin-stalling the previous versionand then installing the newversion, we were able to startthe program without any er-ror message. Unfortunately,the scan was unable to findany channels at all and wecouldn’t figure out why. It’spossible that TBS has to fixsomething in their software,but this didn’t bother us atall; it was obvious by lookingat TBS’s download site thatthey are constantly at workupgrading their drivers andtools.With this software wereached an absolute DXerhigh point in terms of PCbased satellite technology.CrazyScan implements thefollowing functions:• RFScan: Corresponds to aspectrum analyzer• BLScan: Implements ablindscan• IQScan: Shows the con-stellation of the current tran-sponder including automaticidentification of receptionparameters and streams thetransport stream to TSRead-er (see below)• Signalinfo: Displays infor-mation on the received signalWhat’s so special nowabout the TBS 6991 with re-spect to CrazyScan? Verysimple: while most of the TVapplications access the cardthrough BDA drivers, Crazy-Scan speaks directly to thecard so that full potential ofthe tuner can be used. Butto do this the tuner has to beable to implement the neces-sary functions and, beyondthat, CrazyScan has to sup-port the current tuner. Andit just so happens that theTBS 6991 tuner supports allof the four functions men-tioned above and is also rec-ognized by CrazyScan. Thereare relatively very few cardsthat are fully supported byCrazyScan and oddly enoughmost of those cards are TBSmodels…CrazyScan is available forThe TBS 6991 with ProgDVB
  5. 5. The TBS 6991 with DVB Viewer42 TELE-audiovision International — The World‘s Largest Digital TV Trade Magazine — 03-04/2013 — www.TELE-audiovision.comkept quite simple and on themain screen there are onlysix groups that need to beconfigured.• Earth Position: Not nec-essary, but nice for the report- it’s the exact geographicalposition of the reception an-tenna.• Satellite Info: In order tobetter compare the reportsat a later time, the currentsatellite information shouldbe entered.• Style: Here the graphicsdisplay can be set up the wayyou like. The thickness of thelines, the type of curves andthe colors can all be chosen.There are also two buttonsthat determine which of thetwo polarizations are dis-played (H/L, V/R or both).• Device: Here the TBS6991 card with the desiredtuner is selected. Addition-ally, the DiSEqC parameterscan be entered here wherebyCrazyScan makes possiblea cascaded DiSEqC 1.0 andDiSEqC 1.2 sequence. This isideal for more complex sys-tems with multiple motorizedantennas connected throughDiSEqC 1.0 switches.• LNB: The frequencies ofthe local oscillators are sethere. A drop-down menulets you choose the desiredvalues from predefined LNBtypes.• Interval: Here in thisgroup the user can enter inthe start and end frequen-cies of a scan as well as thefrequency step and the po-larization (H/L, V/R or both).The Loop option activates acontinuous scan and can beinteresting when, for exam-ple, the antenna needs to finetuned. A small span would beused that in essence is updat-ed in real time – almost like areal spectrum analyzer.Once all of the parametershave been configured, youcan press the Scan button. Injust a few seconds an exten-sively detailed spectrum isdisplayed. Even the spectrumof both polarizations is showndepending on the configura-tion. For us the construc-tion took about 15 secondsper polarization with fre-quency steps of 5 MHz. Thisresulted in a truly detailedspectrum. If the frequencysteps are increased to 10MHz, the construction of thespectrum needs only abouthalf the time but in exchangethe spectrum doesn’t look asnice. At frequency steps of 1MHz you have to wait a lit-tle bit but in return you’ll getan unbelievably high resolu-tion spectrum display. Aftera number of tests we’ve de-termined that 5 MHz steps isthe optimal value in terms ofdetail and speed.Thanks to the total supportof the TBS 6991, the Blind-scan function can now bestarted. When the appropri-ate button is pushed, Crazy-download in ZIP format andin order for the software towork a number of additionalfiles need to be copied intothe same folder. This includesa StreamReaderEX BDA DLL,the necessary QT/QWT DLLsand eventually the MicrosoftVisual C++ 2008 SP1 mustalso be installed. These filescan be downloaded from theCrazyScan Wiki at CrazyScan can bestarted. First, though, severalparameters have to be con-figured. The user interface is
  6. 6. 44 TELE-audiovision International — The World‘s Largest Digital TV Trade Magazine — 03-04/2013 — www.TELE-audiovision.comScan checks out in the spec-trum all of the transpondersthat were found and displaysthe individual reception pa-rameters in the graphic. Thathappens very quickly – fasterthan any other signal ana-lyzer that we know of. Evenmore impressive is the speedwhen the “Blindscan2” optionis activated. In this case theCrazyScan Blindscan algo-rithm is not used; instead it’sthe hardware implementedBlindscan in the tuner. Andit’s here where the TBS 6991shines with its high speed. Allthe reception parameters ofthe current satellite are listedin record time.The displayed graphic canbe exported in PNG pictureformat, PDF document formator SVG browser format. Un-fortunately, the transponderlist cannot be exported inINI format for normal TV ap-plications. Sooner or laterthe author of CrazyScan willundoubtedly implement thisbut it’s really not all thatimportant since CrazyScanstill has a lot more to offer.If you double-click with themouse on a transponder, anew window opens in whichthe corresponding frequencyis already preset. The coloredkey with the alien face acti-vates the constellation dia-gram. This has it all; it willreset the reception param-eters through the Blindscanfunction and then in just afew seconds the constella-tion diagram will appear. Theuser does not need to set themodulation, symbolrate, FEC,etc. Excellent!If the production of theconstellation diagram isstopped, the currently ac-tive transponder can thenbe streamed such that itcan be further processed byTSReader. The result is un-believable: now we can me-ticulously analyze the streamthat was just determinedand even display the desiredchannel using VLC. This is sopowerful that we simply haveto describe the process againso that we can believe it our-selves:1) You align the antenna toa desired satellite. Using theLoop function and a smallspan you can optimally alignthe antenna with CrazyScanand the use of the spectrum.On the other hand, a com-plex system can be controlledthanks to cascading DiSEqCcommands.2) Next initiate the scanfunction across the entire fre-quency range.3) Continue with the Blinds-can function. If, for example,you find a new transponderthat you would not normallyfind on this satellite, you needonly double-click on it to seethe constellation diagramwith all of its reception pa-rameters.4) Lastly the transponder isstreamed directly to TSRead-er where you can then see amultitude of information re-garding the PIDs in the tran-sponder.5) From TSReader you canfurther stream the desiredchannel to VLC so that it canbe displayed.It is our opinion that evenprofessionals will appreciatethis solution; we as DXersare very impressed and cannow understand how someother DXers manage to findnew feeds (and before us noless!). But we didn’t even tellyou the best part yet! Crazy-Scan is free!TSReader has been aroundfor some time now and itsprogrammer Rod Hewitt wasintroduced in the TELE-sat-ellite 06-07-08/2012 issue.This program is a transportstream analyzer. The vari-ous sources for the transportstream can be incorporatedincluding BDA-compatible TVcards as is the case with allTBS cards.In our last test of TBS DVB-C cards (TBS 5680 and TBS6618) we thoroughly checkedThe TBS with TBSVHID
  7. 7. +–Vitor Martins AugustoTELE-audiovisionTest about this company46 TELE-audiovision International — The World‘s Largest Digital TV Trade Magazine — 03-04/2013 — www.TELE-audiovision.comout CI, for PCI-e or USB. Andlet’s not forget the excep-tional quality and attentionto detail that highlight all ofTBS’s cards.If you want to comfortablywatch TV on your PC, wheth-er its through a TV applica-tion or with a multimedia PCthat, for example, works withthe Windows Media Center,the TBS 6991 gives you aneasy to install TV card thatleaves nothing to be desiredand works in harmony withnearly every TV application.And yet the TBS 6991 isalso interesting for DXersand professionals. The com-plete support of CrazyScan,TSReader and TransEdit to-gether with its twin tunersand CI slots provide for awide range of possibilities.Even some higher-end signalanalyzers can’t keep up withall of these functions, espe-cially when it comes to trans-port stream analysis.We’re not only thrilled withthe TBS 6991; we’re actuallyputting more of them in ourtest PCs!out TSReader and used it tosee whether or not our cableprovider incorporated validNIT tables in the stream –a network scan from DVBDream could not find any ad-ditional transponders. Thanksto TSReader we were able todetermine that it was not withthe provider.If it’s finding errors in thestream or to just simply seeall the details, TSReader isthe tool for advanced ama-teurs and professionals. Be-cause of this it was importantfor us to see how far the har-monization between the TBS6991 and TSReader went.This test was much too fastin that you only had to se-lect “DVB-S BDA compatiblesource” as the source.In the next step the re-ception parameters areselected like normal afterwhich TSReader begins ana-lyzing the numerous PIDswithin the stream. InsertedCAMs, as was already thecase with Windows MediaCenter, are controlled by theTBS-MCECITool that mustbe started on demand. Thisinterrupts the stream whichthen has to be newly restart-ed from within TSReader. Arestart of TSReader is notnecessary.Thanks to the twin tuners,two different TV applicationscan be started at the sametime with the requirementthat they both use differenttuners. Even though the TBS6991 occupies only one PCI-e slot, it can be operated asif there were two separatecards.We could therefore, for ex-ample, use TSReader withtuner A while CrazyScan wasperforming a scan on tuner B.We should not forget to men-tion that ending one of theapplications will interrupt thestream on the other applica-tion. In this case the streamwould have to be restarted.If you have the full versionof DVB Viewer, it will includea tool called TransEdit. Thisprogram primarily serves tocreate channel lists throughscanning that is based eitheron transponder lists or themanual entry of transponderdata. Alternatively, a Blind-scan can also be performedbut it does not utilize the pos-sibilities that the TBS 6991tuner offers. For this reasona Blindscan like this is sig-nificantly slower comparedto CrazyScan. TransEdit cando something else; it canperform a transport streamanalysis in which it lists allthe PIDs. Additionally, com-plete transponders or onlythose selected PIDs can bestreamed to a hard drive.The scan is very comfortable;you need only click on a tran-The TBS 6991 with TSReaderFull featured DVB-S/S2 card with PCI-eTwin Tuner2x CI for PayTVFully supported by Windows Media CenterFully supported by CrazyScan, TSReader andTransEditIdeal for satellite TV viewingIdeal for DX and professional applicationsNoneExpert Opinionsponder to list all the availa-ble channels from a scan. Anadditional double-click on oneof the listed channels opens anew window with the live TVpicture.TBS (Tenow), with its TBS6991, has once again shownhow perfectly designed a PCcard can be. The TBS prod-uct palette includes cards inevery conceivable version,whether it’s DVB-S/S2, DVB-C or DVB-T/T2, with or with-
  8. 8. 1236458748 49TELE-audiovision International — The World‘s Largest Digital TV Trade Magazine — 03-04/2013 — — 03-04/2013 — TELE-audiovision International — 全球发行量最大的数字电视杂志mally isn’t there. And, howabout that, something seemsto be happening on 11.156GHz H!With a double-click on thistransponder we open Crazy-Scan’s “Carrier Search andMonitoring” window and startthe constellation diagram(the button with the alien’sface). The QPSK constella-tion shows that the signal islocked in and that a usefulsignal quality exists. Next westop the constellation dia-gram and then press the DVBbutton to send the stream toTSReader. The first time youdo this you have to tell Cra-zyScan the path to TSRead-er, after that TSReader willopen automatically with thestream. It doesn’t get anySearchingfor a FeedWe would like to demon-strate how easy it is to find afeed using the TBS 6991. Forthis purpose we connectedour 100cm motorized anten-na to tuner B on the card. Inmemory location 4 in our con-figuration can be found Eutel-sat W1 (10.0E). This satelliteoften carries feeds making ita good starting point.We start CrazyScan andenter in the data from Eu-telsat 10.0E in the “SatelliteInfo” field. Only then will thedocumentation of our resultsbe complete. We also selecttuner B and set DiSEqC 1.2to position 4. A click of the“Set DiSEqC” button and theantenna turns to the satellite.Now we perform a scanof both polarizations (V/H).Transponders with feedscan generally be identifiedby their small size; typicallyonly one single audio/videostream is transmitted. Withsome experience you’ll get toknow the spectrum and you’llinstantly be able to recognizea transponder peak that nor-easier.And look at that: TSReaderhas identified an audio/videostream and instantly shows apreview image. Double-click-ing the preview image routesthe channel to VLC (VideoLAN Client) where it is thendisplayed: live soccer withoutany editing.The DXer now has a nicescreenshot with receptionparameters and the time.He then posts the results inthe appropriate forums hop-ing that he was the first to dothis!And then after a few min-utes the feed is gone. Butlook at that, right after thata new feed appears, this timeon 11.93 GHz. A nice DVB-S2signal with unusual recep-tion parameters: SR 7119Ks/sec, FEC 2/3 with DVB-S2with 8PSK. The MPEG-4 videosignal in Planar 4:2:0 YUV iscoded in H.264 with 1920x1080 pixels.Welcome to the world ofthe feedhunter!and audio-PID’s to VLC, whichwill show the live video.6. After the end oft he firstfeed, a new feed is transmit-ted with slightly differentparameters. The sport eventgoes on, now with a differentmodality!7. By the way: the feed isbroadcasted in FTA DVB-S2,best resolution possible. Butthe best of it all: no broad-casting logos, textboxes,nothing! Just the plain video!8. Result of the full blindscan.All reception-parametersare written on the respectivetransponder.1. Finished scan using CrazyScan. Blue is horizontal,red is vertical polarisation – too much information, sowe turn off the vertical polarisation fort he next step.2. Just viewing the horizontal polarisation. Notice thesmall transponder close to 11.200 MHz: small but withperfect shape! Could that be a transponder carrying afeed? Let’s find out by double-clicking on its centre.3. CrazyScan will determine all tuning parameters auto-matically and show the constellation diagram. Indeed itlooks very promising, so let’s click the DVB-button tosend the streamt o TSReader.4. TSReader shows the content oft he Transport Stream(TS) and even shows a preview-picture of the videoPID’s.5. Double-Clicking on the image will stream the video-