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Orban 5500i

OPTIMOD-FM 5500 puts coveted five-band and two-band OPTIMOD processing into a single rack unit package and brings it to you at the most affordable price ever. The 5500 replaces OPTIMOD-FM 5300 and 2300, offering the functionality of both processors in a new, cool-running package.

Quality sound is what 5500 is all about — sound that attracts audiences by providing a polished, professional presentation regardless of format and source material. Exceptional versatility allows you to adjust the processor’s audio texture to brand your audio, knowing that the resulting signature sound will remain consistent, cut-to-cut and source-to-source. Branding builds businesses and no other processors have the consistency to brand your sound like OPTIMODs.


The 5500 can also be used as a superb stand-alone stereo encoder with latency as low as 2 ms and full overshoot limiting in both the left/right and composite baseband domains. When used in this mode, the 5500 must be driven (usually via an STL) by a full-featured FM audio processor (like Orban’s 8600) that incorporates preemphasis-aware HF limiting and peak control. In both modes, the 5500’s stereo encoder helps deliver a transmitted signal that’s always immaculately clean and perfectly peak limited, with full spectral protection of subcarriers and RDS/RBDS regardless of the amount of composite limiting.

The 5500 is the ideal choice for network broadcasters who process with Orban’s flagship OPTIMOD-FM 8600 at the network origination point and who need a processor at every transmitter to eliminate STL overshoots (using the 5500’s stand-alone stereo encoder mode) and/or to process local insertions while also eliminating network STL overshoots (using the 5500’s audio processor / stereo encoder mode). Moreover, the 5500’s two modes make it easy for large government and network broadcasters to manage its inventory of spares because any 5500 can be used as a stereo encoder with or without audio processing.

Available in both modes, the built-in, defeatable ITU BS412 multiplex power controller allows the 5500’s output to meet even the most stringent European government regulations.

New in 5500 is a 10 MHz frequency reference input allows the stereo pilot tone frequency to be locked to GPS or another high-accuracy frequency standard. This improves the performance of single-frequency networks in areas where coverage of the transmitters overlaps. Also new is a cool-running, energy-efficient switching power supply and use of the latest dual-core DSP chip technology from Freescale Semiconductor.

With the 5500, your signature sound is just a preset away. An easy, one-knob Less/More adjustment allows you to customize any factory preset, trading cleanliness against processing artifacts according to the requirements of your market and competitive environment. Full Control gives you the versatility to customize your audio further. And, if you’re a hard-core processing expert, you can explore Advanced Control to tweak presets at the same level as Orban’s factory programmers.

This versatility makes the 5500 a superb choice for any format. Its five-band processing is ideal for any pop music format (even the most competitive and aggressive CHR), while phase-linear two-band processing yields ultra-transparent sound for classical, classic jazz, and fine arts formats. Regardless of your choice, 5500’s optimized technology ensures unusually high average modulation and coverage for a given level of subjective quality. 

Unlike many lesser processors, the 5500 handles speech particularly well — it’s always clean, even when you process for loudness.

Versatility doesn’t stop with sound. The 5500’s built-in stereo encoder, AES/EBU digital inputs and outputs, and analog I/O permit hassle-free interfacing to any broadcast plant, whether the 5500 is located at the studio or the transmitter. Tight band limiting to 15 kHz means you can use any uncompressed digital STL to pass 5500-processed audio from studio to transmitter without compromising on-air loudness — there’s no need to use STLs having 44.1 or 48 kHz samplerates.

If you want to locate the 5500 away from the studio, you’ll be pleased by its three separate remote control ports — GPI contact closures, RS232 serial, and built-in Ethernet for TCP/IP networks. The serial and Ethernet ports are supported by the supplied 5500 PC Remote Control application. This Windows® 2000/XP/Vista/7 application allows you to do even more with the 5500 than you can do through its front panel, making remote control a pleasure.

Built-in clock-based automation lets you automatically daypart the processing. You can control many other 5500 operating parameters too; the 5500’s feature set fully exploits the processor’s DSP and computer-based control architecture. To ensure absolute accuracy, you can automatically synchronize the clock to an Internet timeserver.

If you’re concerned about latency because you need to feed live talent headphones off air, be assured that the 5500’s ultra-low-latency (5 ms delay) processing will keep the most finicky talent happy. Or use optimum latency (15 ms delay) processing for the most competitive sound with delay that’s still low enough to satisfy most any talent.

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