Merlin Media Updates on a Very Short Schedule

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Where to begin?

The first step was deciding where to put the newsroom. Fortunately for Merlin, the office space acquired with the stations had some flexibility. A larger room was located near the studios and TOC, but it was being used by the business office and the interactive group. These departments were moved to another area of the facility that at one time housed the staff of the early version of Emmis Interactive.

One newsroom workstation in use

One newsroom workstation in use

Once cleared, the space was prepped for a newsroom. Workstation furniture was moved in so 10 news workstations could be assembled.

Meanwhile, equipment had to be ordered. But a major decision had to be made: how to handle the new audio routing and switching needs. The stations already had fully functioning air studios. The WWWN air studio was ready for live talk with nine mic positions already in place. (The studio was originally built for the Mancow Morning Show.) The on-air console, a Wheatstone A6000, was ready for the new format. But the news operation was going to need not only routing capability, but smarter logic for dynamic mix minuses and split headphone feeds. Radio Systems suggested layering an Axia Livewire system on top of the existing audio infrastructure.

A broader view of the newsroom

A broader view of the newsroom

The digital routing system allowed new flexibility for the station. Inherent to most modern routing systems, the station can create dynamic mix minuses and split headphone feeds automatically. The Livewire system also positions the stations for future upgrades as needed, including adding mixing surfaces.

Detail of a newsroom workstation

Detail of a newsroom workstation

From there, measurements were made to determine cabling needs and equipment was ordered.

- continued on page 3

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