DirecTV Taps Harmonic for HD Push

Compression vendor Harmonic is powering DirecTV's expanded offering of high-definition channels, which should begin rolling out later this month.

Harmonic announced that DirecTV is using its DiviCom Electra 7000 HD MPEG-4 AVC (H.264) encoders to compress its new HD channels, along with its ProStream 1000 stream-processing platform with DiviTrackIP distributed statistical multiplexing and its NMX Digital Service Manager.

DirecTV is expected to offer some 70 HD channels by the end of September, and more by year-end, including new HD services such as CNN HD and The Weather Channel HD. To do so, it is using new satellites and MPEG-4 compression technology to maximize bandwidth efficiency.

“Harmonic is a reliable partner with outstanding technology and high performance products,” DirecTV chief technology officer Rômulo Pontual said in a statement. “The Electra 7000 enabled us to provide superior video quality for the latest expansion of our HD channel lineup that will include up to 100 national HD channels by year-end."