Radio Currents Online - Aug 13 - Aug 19, 2007


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FCC Issues NPRM on AM Use of FM Translators
Washington - Aug 15, 2007 - On July 14, 2006, the National Association of Broadcasters filed a petition for rulemaking proposing an amendment to the FCC Rules to allow AM broadcast stations to operate FM translator stations. The NAB Petition proposed that AM stations be permitted to license and/or use FM translator stations to retransmit their AM service as a fill-in service to rebroadcast the AM signal, provided that no portion of the 60dBu contour of any such FM translator station extends beyond the smaller of a 25-mile radius from the AM transmitter site, or the 2mV/m daytime contour of the AM station. The FCC received more than 500 comments on the NAB petition, with the majority supporting the proposal.

The FCC has issued a notice of proposed rule making (NPRM) to enact rules to permit the use of FM translators by AM stations. The FCC will also examine the issues related to such a rule change, including the issue of program origination at night over FM translators by AM daytime-only stations.

Comments are due 60 days after the public notice appears in the Federal Register. Reply comments are due 90 days after publication of the notice in the Federal Register.
MB Docket No. 07-172


IBOC Rules Published in Federal Register
Washington - Aug 15, 2007 - The FCC's final rules on IBOC have been published in the Federal Register. With this publication, the details of the second report and order from May 2007 will go into effect. There are three items in those rules that now have time lines. These all take effect on Sept. 14, 2007:

  • AM stations can commence night-time IBOC operations.
  • FM stations can multicast without obtaining special temporary authority from the FCC.
  • FM stations can use separate antennas for hybrid IBOC operation without obtaining special temporary authority from the FCC.

The FCC is still seeking some comments on various aspects, and Mexico has recently made some protests about IBOC, so more information will likely be released by the FCC at a later time.

The complete final rules are available at this link.


AES Posts 123rd Convention Events Calendar
New York - Aug 13, 2007 - The 123rd Audio Engineering Society Convention Committee is making its final preparations for this year's event in New York's Javits Center Oct. 5-8. The AES has posted a detailed preliminary calendar of events at www.aes.org/events/123. The schedule includes program titles, participants and drop-down boxes for detailed information.


FCC Considers NCE FM Application Cap for October Filing Window
Washington - Aug 9, 2007 - On April 4, 2007, the Federal Communications Commission announced a filing window from Oct. 12, 2007 until Oct. 19, 2007, for FM reserved-band applications for noncommercial educational (NCE) FM new station and major change applications. At that time, the FCC reserved the right to establish a limit on the number of NCE applications allowed by a single party.

After the NCE FM filing window was announced, several parties involved in NCE FM station operations filed proposals to limit the number of NCE FM applications that any party may file during the filing window. The proposals uniformly express concern that failure to establish a limit on the number of NCE FM applications from a single party would lead to a large number of speculative filings, creating the potential for extraordinary procedural delays. The FCC agrees to the likelihood of this possibility.

The FCC proposes that an applicant may hold no more than 10 applications filed in the window. If the FCC finds that an applicant has an interest in more than 10 applications, the FCC will retain the 10 applications filed first and dismiss all other applications. Major modification applications will not count toward the limit. Pending new and major change applications filed under former licensing procedures also will not count toward the limit.

The FCC seeks comments on this proposed limit. Comments are due 15 days after date of publication in the Federal Register, and reply comments are due 25 days after date of publication in the Federal Register. All filings must be submitted in MM Docket No. 95-31.


Business

International Datacasting Moves to New Facilities
Ottawa, ON - Aug 15, 2007 - International Datacasting is moving from its long-time head office location in west central Ottawa to a new facility in Kanata, ON. At the same time, IDC will unveil its new website and new URL at www.datacast.com. The new facility provides the company with upgraded research and development, manufacturing and systems integration facilities.

The move is scheduled to take place during the week of August 22. International Datacasting will be open for regular business at the new facilities on August 27. The website will change at the same time. E-mail addresses will remain the same except intldata.ca will be replaced with datacast.com. Telephone numbers for the company will not change. The new address will be:

International Datacasting Corporation
50 Frank Nighbor Place
Kanata, ON Canada K2V 1B9
613-596-4120

Sales Call
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Bradley Broadcast and Pro Audio has been appointed a national dealer in the Audioarts line of broadcast audio consoles and the Vorsis line of audio processors. Bradley is based in Frederick, MD.
Studer has supplied several On Air Series digital broadcast consoles to stations in China. Sichuan Radio will use On Air 1000 and 2000 consoles for news and music. Foshan Radio, Shunde Radio and Bao'an Radio have all purchased On Air 2000 models. The Wuxi Media Group has chosen two On Air 2000 Modulo consoles for its newly refurbished studios.
Marshall Amps, the guitar amplifier manufacturer, has purchased a Prism Sound Dscope III audio analyzer for its R&D facility in Miton Keynes, UK.

People

Jim Bakker

Klotz Digital Adds Bakker for Sales
Munich - Aug 13, 2007 - Klotz Digital has appointed Jim Bakker to the position of sales director for Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA). He is responsible for the sale of the whole range of Klotz Digital's broadcast and public address products and to expand the company's sales channel in both markets.

Bakker has worked in the PA and RBC market for more than 10 years. Previous employment includes working for AKG Acoustics, where he was responsible for sales business in Europe. Prior to that he was involved in sales, consulting, design and installation for high-performance installed sound systems.


Products

Axia Adds Color to Element
Cleveland - Aug 13, 2007 - Axia Element consoles can now be ordered in three color combinations: silver on charcoal, bronze on charcoal, and the original gray on silver combo. The new color options will be shown at IBC2007 and the NAB Radio Show.

Axia has also added new studio control panels. These operator controls interface with Element consoles to give users remote control of headphone selection, mic channels and other functions, and three new flexible button panels can be programmed to trigger router salvos, load profiles, switch studios, control audio equipment, provide intercom functions and more.

The controllers include a family of 5-, 10- and 15-button film-legendable button controllers in a 1RU package, programmable Smart Switch four-button studio accessory panels, programmable Film Cap five-button studio accessory panels, a mic control/headphone selector panel for Element consoles, and a producer's mic control panel for Element consoles.


Prism Sound Releases Dscope Series III Software
Cambridge, UK - Aug 14, 2007 - Prism Sound has released the Dscope Series III audio analyzer software version 1.21. Many new features have been added at the request of users, including tools for acoustic measurements, PC audio and 192kHz sampling on digital audio interfaces. Key features included in the software revision are:

  • Generation and analysis using Windows sound devices, including multi-channel device support
  • 192kHz sample rate support on AES3 and S/PDIF digital audio interfaces
  • Support for acoustic measurements of transducers and rooms
  • Very fast measurements (including frequency response) using swept-sine (Farina) method or bin-centred noise with impulse response and FFT
  • Quasi-anechoic measurement using an adjustable time-window to eliminate acoustic reflections
  • Support for measurement microphone sensitivity and frequency response calibration
  • Time domain averaging to reduce the effects of random noise on measurements

A number of smaller enhancements have also been added. Among these are the ability to import and export sample buffers and .WAV files; enhancements to the user interface; the ability to run a script on every sweep step; new trace transformations; clip flags on monitor outputs; and the ability to run multiple scripts simultaneously. Registered Dscope users can download the new software free of charge.


Eye on IBOC

Harris Presents Digital Radio Technology at Dominican Republic Radio Event
Cincinnati - Aug 14, 2007 - Harris showcased its digital radio technology at the Digital Radio Forum in the Dominican Republic. Harris teamed with its Dominican Republic dealer, Repuestos de Radio and TV, to provide presentations for regional broadcasters interested in digital radio.

The forum, which was planned by Indotel, the Dominican Republic's equivalent of the FCC, showed radio transmission technology and implementation strategies for all three standards.

The Harris exhibition included the Flexstar HDX exciter operating in hybrid mode with a Harris Z-Series tri-mode transmitter. The company showed examples of how stations are using HD Radio to multicast in the U.S., and provided a formal presentation on the three digital standards: HD Radio, DRM and DAB.

Representatives of numerous islands, including Bermuda and the Bahamas, attended the event. It was noted that some broadcasters in Puerto Rico are currently transmitting an HD Radio signal, and because of this, many Caribbean nations seem to be leaning toward HD Radio broadcasting.

While HD Radio was the focus of most discussion, Caribbean broadcasters also expressed interest in DRM and DAB. Broadcasters from Europe were on hand to discuss successes with these standards.


Radio Regenbogen Launches First HD Radio Test in Germany
Columbia, MD - Aug 15, 2007 - Radio Regenbogen, one of Germany's private radio stations, and network operator Media and Broadcast of T-System have announced it will begin an HD Radio technology field test at the end of August. Listeners in the Rhine-Nectar area will be able to receive the Radio Regenbogen program as well as two multicast formats: Regenbogen Gold and Regenbogen Comedy.

The testing is also supported by Ibiquity Digital, Audioexport Georg Neumann, Orban/CRL Systems, Broadcast Electronics and Ruoss, a company that has assisted with HD Radio tests in Switzerland. The first test results are to be presented at an event of the Regional Office for Communication that will be held in Stuttgart on Sept. 27, 2007.




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