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Barix introduces Real-Time Clock accessory that keeps audio and control devices ticking

Published on 3 January, 2013

Audio over IP pioneer Barix addresses network downtime with its new Real-Time Clock accessory, ensuring that audio and control devices continue operating uninterrupted during network failures — keeping mission-critical operations for broadcast radio, streaming media, building automation and other applications on time.

The market-agnostic, self-sustaining reference clock plugs into any device with an RS232 serial port, including but not limited to Barix IP audio and control products. The Barix Real-Time Clock (RTC) maintains time, even when unpowered, for years.  This allows the RTC to provide time information immediately after a device startup, independent of a network-based time reference.

“Barix devices are normally network-connected and receive the time through that connection, but what if, after a power outage, the network connection remains down?” asks Johannes G. Rietschel, CEO and founder of Barix AG.  “It’s a serious concern if your operation requires time-dependent logging or control. The Barix Real-Time Clock provides that time source to maintain operations.”

Rietschel points to specific examples for streaming media and building automation. Retail businesses, for example, often operate “Store and Play” systems for in-store audio that are programmed to run time-based announcements and playlists.  The Barix Real-Time Clock allows the device to work offline without network connection, playing out audio messages and time-sensitive content on time.  Similarly, broadcasters streaming syndicated programs with local network IDs, jingles, ads and promos can trigger events on schedule without affecting the on-air content.

For building automation, Rietschel notes that Barix Barionet IP control devices can use the RTC to gain independence from network time references, continuing to switch lights and boilers on and off if the network goes south. This ensures that energy-saving techniques for schools, businesses and other facilities continue without disruption.

“The overarching benefit for any operation is that your devices can read the time from the RTC and run critical programmes as scheduled,” he said. “It's a low-cost accessory that can make a big difference.”

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