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10GbE NIC Optimized for SMPTE 2110
Posted on Monday, September 5, 2022

Sept. 5, 2022 - DekTec's upcoming release of the DTA-2110 makes writing software-based SMPTE 2110 solutions easier than ever. The card comes with an easy-to-use C++ SDK and is integrated into FFmpeg so that tools such as ffplay can be used directly. The DTA-2110 guarantees robust real-time operation and significantly reduces system load compared to other SMPTE 2110 solutions in the market.

The DTA-2110 is a 10 Gigabit Ethernet PCIe card with on-board hardware accelerators for streaming of SMPTE 2110 and SMPTE 2022 signals. TS-over-IP functions such as those available on the DTA-2160 and the DTA-2162 are also supported. An SFP+ slot allows the user to insert a suitable SFP module to connect to a 10GbE or 1GbE network via an optical or electrical interface.

At its core, the DTA-2110 is a standard network interface card (NIC) for Windows and Linux, with offloading of functions like checksum calculations from CPU to hardware. Specific SMPTE 2110 features include accurate timestamp hardware for allowing (1) optimal implementation of PTP agents and (2) analysis of the jitter of received IP packets, and Zero-Jitter transmission of audio and video streams.

Where the board really shines, and clearly outperforms other network cards, is the direct high bitrate connection between hardware and user application.

Looking at the reception process:

  • On a standard NIC, IP packets received from the network port are demultiplexed in the network driver (=in software) and passed on to the user, involving copying of all data.
  • To eliminate such copying, the DTA-2110 establishes "hardware pipes" to the application. The DTA-2110 filters packets on-board based on IP address and writes the data to a shared DMA buffer. The application reads data from the DMA buffer; zero software (no filtering, no copying) is required for writing data to the DMA buffer.

The same goes for the transmission process, but in the opposite direction.

All of this means that for high bitrate streams such as UHD video, the CPU load and host memory bandwidth used for the I/O of SMPTE 2110 streams will be significantly lower on the DTA-2110 than on a standard NIC. This leaves more CPU cycles and more memory bandwidth to the user application.

The DTA-2110 offers a new software interface: "Audio/Video FIFO" API (AvFifo), which is particularly suitable for processing component-based SMPTE 2110 streams. AvFifo is part of DTAPI, for ensured compatibility with other DekTec PCIe cards and USB modules. Synchronized multi-component (service-based) handling with Matrix API will be supported at a later stage.

AvFifo is very easy to use: your application can read or write audio samples or video frames directly from and to the FIFO. Timing utility functions make it easy to stay in sync with PTP. A bare minimum of SMPTE 2110 knowledge is required to be productive.

The DTA-2110 has been tested at the recent Joint Task Force on Networked Media (JT-NM) test event prior of IBC 2022. For details on the JT-NM Tested program at IBC 2022 and test results please see

Production of the DTA-2110 is underway and the card is expected to be available in early Q4 2022.