Megacable has deployed an integrated headend solution from Harmonic that includes the vendor’s Electra 9200 universal multiservice encoder, ProStream 9100 with ACE stream processor, and NMX Digital Service Manager video network management solution.

Megacable operates in more than 110 cities throughout Mexico. The company consolidated operations into two super headends.

"Prior to this installation, we were managing a variety of diverse headends around the country, which made it challenging to provide a consistent channel lineup and good video quality to our customers," said Emerson Sampaio, chief technology officer at Megacable.

With a unified headend, he said, Megacable is deliver a uniform channel lineup, in both SD and HD. The operator can now roll out new channels and services more rapidly.

The companies two new integrated headends are in Guadalajara and Veracruz; they feed approximately 20 regional headends.

From the Guadalajara headend, Harmonic's Electra 9200 encoders provide high-quality, low-bandwidth MPEG-2 and MPEG-4 AVC encoding of SD and HD video content for Megacable's television services.

Harmonic's ProStream 9100 stream processors with DiviTrackIP technology work with the Electra encoders across a LAN or WAN, allowing for efficient management of the encoders' statmux pools. Leveraging DiviTrackIP, the Electra supports up to 64 channels per statmux pool, providing Megacable with a high-density solution that reduces the operator's capital and operating expenses, the vendor said.

By simultaneously generating both an HD AVC and an SD MPEG-2 down-converted output signal from a single HD input, the Electra 9200 allows Megacable to reach HD AVC and legacy SD MPEG-2 set-top boxes. The encoder features a scalable architecture that will grow as Megacable adds more channels and services in the future.

In addition to the Electra encoders, Megacable has deployed Harmonic's ProStream 9100 with ACE in its backup headend in Veracruz. The ProStream 9100 with ACE performs transcoding of 60 SD or 20 HD MPEG-2 and AVC broadcast channels, further increasing Megacable's operational efficiencies and cost savings. In addition, the ProStream 9100 features enhanced socket redundancy capabilities that enable triggering of Megacable's disaster recovery site based on a set of pre-defined conditions.

The NMX Digital Service Manager video network management solution supplies a powerful set of tools for monitoring and managing Megacable's cable TV services.

"Our customers in Latin America are realizing the dramatic impact that a unified headend can have on their business," said Alvaro Martin, managing director of sales for Latin America at Harmonic. "The installation at Megacable is a great example of the operational efficiencies, reduced expenses, and improved video quality that an integrated infrastructure solution from Harmonic brings to the table."