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The Milford facility needed a better way to distribute audio throughout the building. The new studio build was a good opportunity to integrate a new type of system, such as the Audioarts IOC center and AE-Net Router. Conveniently, it also was a direct interface to the D75N consoles we were using. The benefit of the audio router system is that it simplifies the wiring and keeps everything in a centralized location.
One challenge during a complete renovation is what to do with the business staff during the office renovation. After the studios were built and the studio equipment was moved, the original portion of the building and its two former additions desperately needed an overhaul. But this would require removing all interior walls. Luckily, when Delmarva Broadcasting purchased WNCL in 2003, it used the transmitter site as studios and offices. This building is only five miles south of the main building and still houses the WNCL-FM transmitter. With a large amount of unused space available at this site, it seemed obvious to move sales and management there. With some paint and new carpet, it was as good as new. The one problem that had to be resolved was high-speed Internet and intranet service to this facility. With the use of a networked traffic and billing system, a stable system was a must. Neither cable nor DSL service was available in this area. A satellite service was tested but was not stable enough for our needs. What we had was a stable STL system in place between the buildings. With the addition of a Moseley Lanlink to our existing STL, we were able to get a reliable 1MB, bi-directional network system between the buildings. This had no reoccurring monthly charges and installation costs were low. This allowed us to keep everything networked.
We used custom-built guest turrets for the studios. We left these on rubber feet so they could be moved where they were needed most. These incorporated a network jack for any guest or co-host to access the Internet via a laptop, which is a welcome addition in today's studios. This was accomplished with a Neutrik RJ-45 insert into the XLR receptacle of the Broadcast Tools HR-1/AHR-2 mounting panel. This interface also includes the jock's choice of ¼” or ⅛” headphone jack. This eliminated the age-old question to the engineering staff, “Do you have an adapter for my headphones? I lost mine.”
The studio speakers are ceiling-mounted, and Steve Koehle of Lightner Electronics ran the wires inside the mounting pipes and connected them internally. At first glance people ask “where are the speaker wires?”
Rebuilding the facility allowed us to take advantage of the most current technology, but it also allowed us to plan and apply an overall design philosophy to the entire facility. Thanks to the partners who provided their expertise, we were able to accomplish this goal.
WAFL currently broadcasts an HD Radio signal with an HD-2 installation scheduled for fall of 2007. WNCL and WYUS are scheduled for an HD Radio conversion in 2008.
Twilley is director of engineering for Delmarva Broadcasting, Wilmington, DE.
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Audioarts AE-Net, IOC, audio router, D75N consoles
Audion Labs Vox Pro
Brady ID Expert labeler
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