Overview – PAM PiCo

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Overview – PAM PiCo

The PAM PiCo provides reassurance throughout the production chain that loudness levels are consistent and the addition of loudness logging enables key operators to maintain a database of ‘show by show’ loudness history as a definitive record of compliance

Loudness Modes

The PAM PiCo comprises two modes of loudness measurement operation.

Capture Start Pause – Measurement is triggered manually using the Start/Pause/Reset buttons at the bottom of the meter. This mode is useful when checking levels ‘on the fly’, when monitoring a channel output or applications like Ingest, QC, MCR and Lines rooms. 

Capture Auto Start – Loudness measurement is triggered by the presence of incoming audio and is ideal for measuring the level of a completed project or work in progress during a Post production operation. When used in conjunction with loudness logging, Auto Start and the Logging Application are activated before the clip is played. Both the PiCo and the Logging software will commence measurement as soon as audio is present, once the clip is finished the resultant ‘Integrated’ Loudness figure, Histogram and other important criteria such as True Peak are recorded for the project giving a comprehensive record of compliance or as a means to identify problems to be rectified.

Existing owners of PAM PiCo can benefit from the new improved feature set via a free update coming soon at www.tslproducts.com.
PAM PiCo One and Two users will benefit from the additional features and functions including SMPTE Timecode and Loudness Logging.
PAM PiCo Three and Four users can upgrade to PAM PiCo Five
PAM PiCo Five users will gain SMPTE Timecode and Video Preview functions

Data Filtering


The data filter function of the Loudness Logging application is used to isolate individual programmes or commercials within a long-form history graph. The operator enters the start/stop points of the content under analysis and the application calculates the loudness and peak readings for that area of waveform. A separate report can be created and stored within the logging database.

A good example of the use of the data filter would be to analyse a commercial which has been identified as excessively loud via a viewer complaint. By recalling the log file for that period of transmission the commercial break is identified, the filter applied and the loudness value for that advertisement calculated.

Overview – PAM PiCo

The StarFish™ Display

The StarFish™ is a development of the JellyFish® surround audio display created by DK-Technologies. It provides a picture of the 5.1 surround audio energy field. The display has the front centre channel arranged towards the top with other directions as marked to represent the listeners’ field of hearing.


TSL starfish displayThe image here shows the StarFish™ display with equal audio on all legs. Typical sound fields have energy in a variety of directions and more complex shapes are created which give an indication of sound energy within each channel. Unlike the earlier JellyFish display within which a representation of the equal

signal would have shown a circle, the StarFish™ takes into account the summation which occurs when there is coherent (in-phase) content between adjacent legs such as left and centre. Polarity inverted (out of phase) signals can cause the shape to be pulled inwards towards the centre point, reflecting the perceived cancellation that occurs.

Overview – PAM PiCo

FFT Spectrum Analyser

FFT-TSLShape_ThumbsThe Fats Fourier Transform (FFT) spectrum analyser is primarily designed ti display the audio spectrum of a given channel displayed by PiCo during production however a secondary role can be as a means o detect frequency response problems caused by infrastructure defects and equipment faults.

The FFT is a default function of the PICO FOUR meter and is optionally availably for PICO ONE, PICO TWO, and PICO THREE. Slide all the way to the left on your meter views to reach the FFT.

The FFT (Fast Fourier Transform) analyzer function performs a 1024 band audio spectrum analysis function.

The FFT features a x10 Zoom function, allowing a more precise view of the audio spectrum.

Furthermore, the FFT allows for pointing to a specific frequency pin for detailed readings, by using the ‘Cursor’ button.
Hit the ‘Cursor’ button and use the ‘Move’ buttons to point to the desired frequency pin.

Once the relevant frequency pin has been selected, the ‘SetRel’ function (Set Relative Level) allows you to align the overall FFT level using the current pin as the reference point.


Overview – PAM PiCo

Phase Correlation

Page 26 copyPAM PiCo features a number of functions designed to check signal phase correlation. Intended primarily as an aide to content producers such as mix engineers and editors, features such as the Vectorscope (Stereo content), Starfish™ or JellyFish™ (both 5.1) may be used to check for phase shift problems, which may be caused by cbling errors or incorrectly configured or faulty equipment.

When the Goniometer, StarFish™ or JellyFish™ are selected, the left most part of the display is a phase bargraph with purple graticule lines. This displays information on the main left/right inputs, with the factory supplied default for this being the first AES input. Other signals can be chosen using the internal matrix. Audio meters are rarely used to display pure sine waves and the term “in-phase” is applied here meaning a signal where the mono sum is equal to or greater than the higher of the left and right signals. “Out of phase” is a signal where the mono sum would be less than the higher of the left and right signals. Signals which are predominantly “in phase” have a green marker in the upper half of the range. Fully correlated signals such as double mono read on the +1 mark. Signals which are “out of phase” are shown with a red marker in the lower half of the range.

Overview – PAM PiCo

Pico Five video closeupLarge squareTEMPLATEWith the complete range of features including the brand new SMPTE Timecode display and Loudness Logging common across all three models and with PAM PiCo Five equipped with the unique Video Preview, PAM PiCo is now truly the most comprehensively equipped standalone meter in its class.

The display now also supports 3G video streaming and de-embedding. This makes the high-end PAM PiCo meter extremely powerful and useful for at a glance metering and picture viewing through the new Picture View function.

SMPTE Timecode recognition

The SMPTE linear timecode measurement PAM_PiCo_Software_Utility_v1.3.3.7 and recognition will give users a frame accurate time reference when combined with the loudness logging application. Timecode also acts as a measure of signal integrity.

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Overview – PAM PiCo

  • Loudness measurement to EBU, ITU and ATSC and many other recommendations
  • Audio de-embedding from SDI input, maximum 16 channels (PAM PiCo Five only)
  • AES and analogue audio inputs
  • USB Powered (plug top PSU included)
  • EBU Digital, BBC and EBU PPM, DIN, Nordic, VU and many other regional and international scale options
  • Moving Coil Meter emulation including M/S
  • LKFS or LUFS loudness scales
  • Sliding Loudness Histogram display
  • Video Preview (SDI model only)
  • Phase indication bargraph
  • StarFish™ display (Surround Sound Applications)
  • Numerical indication of loudness and loudness range – LRA
  • Adjustable reference level
  • User selectable bargraph colours and indication
  • Variable gate settings
  • Loudness Reclaim value
  • True Peak display (flying peak and numerical display)
  • Simple and intuitive front panel controls
  • Online upgrade and update capability via PC (USB connection)
  • Desk or rack mount
  • User selectable Landscape mode
  • Screen Grab application and FFT spectrum analyser
  • Loudness Logging Application – free download
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