New Barix IP Audio Modules – IP Audio Streaming Plus Control

Some new interesting and innovative modules from Barix. “The IP Audio Modules target the increasing demand for audio streaming applications from real-time audio transmission, audio monitoring and distribution, audio recording, paging, to intercom and warning tone generation systems.

They allow cost effective integration of network, audio and interface functionality into standard products or OEM product developments. The module’s serial interface allows OEM products to seamlessly connect to which opens the door to even more applications. The Barix IP Audio Modules can be loaded with a different variety of standard software(*) and can easily be programmed with new OEM specific functionality. The Barix Modules are low cost, lower power and at the same time highly reliable and simple to integrate.

The , with the dimensions 39mm x 53mm (size of half a pack of cigarettes), is loaded with Audio In and Audio Out ports (Stereo), a USB interface for connection to Flash Sticks and two serial interfaces. Next to the 10/100 Network connection port is a second port which can be configured by firmware to be used for redundancy (double wiring) and daisy chaining. The module allows itself to be universally implemented in almost all audio transmission/audio streaming applications. The available standard firmware Annuncicom, Instreamer, Exstreamer (*) covers almost all applications. In addition, it is fully programmable and configurable for specific individual applications. Various audio formats such as MP3, uLaw and aLaw and various sample rates allow the product to be used in not only music applications, but also in compatible VoIP installations.

The Barix IP Audio Module 200 is a lower cost alternative and ideal for customers who only need Audio Output functionality. The size of the module is (56 x 33mm, 2.2” x 1.3”). It not only streams MP3 files but also WMA/ASF and MMS. Loaded with the standard Exstreamer (*) firmware it allows itself to be individually configured to meet OEM specifications. Besides the network and audio connections the module also offers a USB and serial interface as well as digital I/O connections. The IP Audio Module 200 is designed to be universal, in many cases it can be directly soldered onto a carrier board.

Both modules are extremely reliable since they are not PC based (no memory fragmentation, no rebooting, very long life span) and ideal for top level tasks that can not afford any failure. Notably the modules only use 2 Watts of power. One of the new highlights of the modules is the USB port which allows the connection of USB flash memory sticks. Even without the USB stick it is possible to store small audio files in both of the modules’ internal memory storage chips and can be updated and played back over the network connection. Both modules are capable to playback audio streams from customer specific software solutions such as time scheduled announcements (NTP and RTC). For potential OEM clients Barix offers an Evaluation Kit (Audio Module on a carrier board). For general applications Barix offers standard stand-alone components.

Typical applications of the IP Audio Modules are:

  • Security and building automation: surveillance, intercoms, evacuation systems, access control with talk back, monitoring via network
  • STL Studio Transmitter Links: Audio bridging from studios to transmitter, monitoring equipment, live audio streaming from events
  • Audio Distribution: In-Store music and advertisements, Music-On-Hold, Audio distribution over Internet and networked home audio systems
  • Warning tone generator, PA systems with network control
  • VoIP telephone system expansion (music insertion, door intercom, announcements)

Availability and Pricing:
The IP Audio Module 100 is currently available and the IP Audio Module 200 will be available in May from Barix and Sphinx Computer (General distributor for Europe; Depending on model type and quantity the modules cost approximately 80 Euros a piece.

(*) The Barix Exstreamer is an intelligent stand-alone MP3 Player with network connection. It can be configured to push, pull and broadcast the audio content. Depending on Exstreamer type it can transform the audio to playback over the analog or digital connectors and even offers a direct amplified speaker connection. The Barix Instreamer is a stand-alone Audio Encoder for streaming applications and audio distribution. It transforms signals (analog, digital) and broadcasts them to the Internet or local network offering limitless possibilities in audio distribution. The Barix Annuncicom is a network based intercom system without the need of a central system. The universal component (encoding and decoding) can be implemented in a variety of places bridging communication over Network bringing new communication points. It is also simple to tap the communication into OEM software.”

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