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Direct Broadcast Satellite Communications: An MPEG Enabled Service by Donald C. Mead

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Chapter Eleven. Integrated Receiver Decoder

The key to a successful DBS service is an inexpensive integrated receiver decoder (IRD). After all, if consumers cannot afford the IRD, they cannot subscribe to the DBS service! This was considered so important that the first contract for IRDs required that the retail price be $700 or less.

The inexorable march of Moore’s law, coupled with the learning curve and production volumes in excess of a million units a year, drove the IRD price down to zero (with one service provider’s $200 rebate) as of July 1997.

11.1 IRD Components

The IRD consists of an outdoor unit (ODU) and an indoor unit (IDU). These two units are connected by a coaxial cable. Figure 11.1 is from a photograph of an ODU, which consists ...

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