B2C2 FlexCop

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These are quite interesting and well-designed PCI interface chipset by B2C2 Inc.. They contain a flexible MPEG2 Transport Stream interface with hardware PID filters which, if delivery of a complete Transport Stream payload is not desired, allow for the removal of unwanted packets from the stream, and thus reduce the bandwidth utilized when transferred across the host system bus.

PID filtering is most useful in scenarios such as when recording one HD program (typically 14-17Mbps) from a 256-QAM stream (having a demodulated payload ~38.8Mbps), or when recording low resolution program streams from any given Transport Stream. In other scenarios, such as when recording an HD stream encoded with 8-VSB (~19.4Mbps), PID filtering is not as impactive in terms of the relative bandwidth savings, since the saved program usually constitutes most of the original Tranport Stream's bandwidth to begin with. The hardware filters impact may also be limited if in the case of collecting EIT data.

As far we know the chipset contains a Smartcard interface and a CSA Descrambler. As it tends to display some quirks in the i2c Protocol interface, the PCI bridge driver thus needs to know which clients are allowed on the bus in order to avoid lockups.

The Linux driver works quite good and has no known drawbacks. Support for the IC's Smartcard Interface and CSA Descrambler features, however, are missing.

The FlexCop/FlexCop2 family is comprised of the FlexCopII, FlexCopIIb and FlexCopIII variants.

These chips are employed in several TechniSat DVB cards and USB devices.


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