Know Your DOCSIS 3.1 Network

A Whitepaper Series Covering The New DOCSIS 3.1 Network


first whitepaper
Part 1
second whitepaper
Part 2
third whitepaper
Part 3
fourth whitepaper
Part 4


Subscribe for More DOCSIS 3.1 Information as it Becomes Available
Firmware Update Notice
  • Perform DOCSIS 3.1 level measurements, full channel plan scans, and spectral analysis of full 24 to 192 MHz OFDM Channels and Physical Link Channels (PLC)
  • In-depth analysis of Physical Link Channels (PLC) with demodulation, decoding and constellation display for continuous pilots, BPSK symbols, and 16-QAM data
  • Test DOCSIS 3.1 downstream channels against user adjustable limit sets including; Average, Max, Min, Peak to Valley and Tilt
  • Perform TraffiControl and full band capture measurements of OFDMA return bursts for DOCSIS 3.1 upstream channel
  • Setup channel presets, channel plans, limit sets and autotests in their existing meters in preparation for DOCSIS 3.1 testing

New DSP Family: 120 DSP, 180 DSP, 360 DSP, 720 DSP, and 1G DSP

Free DOCSIS 3.1 firmware update will be available in December 2015 for the New DSP Family of installation, service & maintenance meters including the
120 DSP, 180 DSP, 360 DSP, 720 DSP, and 1G DSP

Over the last year a limited number of MSOs have begun deploying DOCSIS 3.1 systems. Up until recently, all deployments have been limited in size and have been used solely for proof-of-concept testing by select MSOs. Today, the industry is starting to transition away from internal testing of small scale DOCSIS 3.1 deployments to providing subscribers services through full scale DOCSIS 3.1 deployments.

With full scale DOCSIS 3.1 deployments coming as soon as the middle of 2016, Trilithic recognizes the need for updated field test equipment that supports testing of new DOCSIS 3.1 signals. However, over the last few years Trilithic has deployed tens of thousands of installation, service and maintenance meters around the world that were not originally designed for DOCSIS 3.1 testing.
Furthermore, with all of the necessary capital expenditures needed to prepare systems for DOCSIS 3.1 there may not be any additional capital available for installation, service, and maintenance teams to spend on hardware upgrades or purchases of new test equipment.

With all of this in mind, Trilithic has developed a FREE firmware update that will be available in December 2015 for our new DSP family of field analyzers including;
  • 120 DSP
  • 180 DSP
  • 360 DSP
  • 720 DSP
  • 1G DSP

This free firmware update features a comprehensive software based testing solution designed to support DOCSIS 3.1 service deployments.
By using your existing meter with this firmware update, you will be able to extend the value of your initial meter investment. Additionally, this will allow you to wait until DOCSIS 3.1 chipsets and modems become available from silicon vendors in late 2016 before spending your limited capital funds on new or upgraded test equipment.

The best part of this solution is that it allows technicians to hit the ground running after updating the meter and performing a few simple setup steps. Since this update uses the same measurement tools technicians are already familiar with, it also helps to minimize the amount of time needed to re- train technicians thus reducing operational expenses related to employee downtime.

Testing Features

The new DOCSIS 3.1 firmware update includes all of the following measurement features.

Forward Spectrum - OFDM Channel

  • Provides the ability to view raw forward and return spectrum traces of full 24 to 192 MHz OFDM channels
  • Fast DSP spectrum snapshots give the user extreme speed to capture fast transients on the upstream and downstream.

Forward Spectrum - Physical Link Channel (PLC)

  • Provides the ability to view raw spectrum traces of the continuous pilot carriers needed for locking onto an OFDM signal
  • Identify locations of ingress or interference that could potentially affect the PLC

OFDM Channel Level Measurement

  • Level & tilt measurement of full 24 to 192 MHz OFDM channels in 6 MHz blocks with PLC block highlighted in pink
  • Displays PLC frequency, avg level, max peak-to-valley and tilt of the OFDM channel while providing pass fail/results for Min/Max Level, Peak to Valley and Tilt

PLC Constellation View

  • Constellation display of the continuous pilots (pink squares), BPSK symbols (blue circles) and 16-QAM data (green squares) for PLC
  • Displays PLC frequency, avg level, max peak-to-valley and MER of the PLC while providing pass/fail results for Min/Max Level, Peak to Valley, and MER

Full Channel Plan Scan

  • Displays the frequency response of the entire channel lineup
  • Tilt shows the level difference between two selectable channels
  • Provides pass/fail results for Min/Max Tilt

Upstream Traffic Control Plus

  • Allows for a high-speed view of ingress in the upstream
  • Heat map allows for simplified view of ingress hotspots
  • Comes standard on the 1G DSP, not available for the 120 DSP, optional feature for the 180 DSP, 360 DSP & 720 DSP