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From here to there
The KOKB transmitter is 15 miles northwest of the studio. The KLOR and KPNC transmitters are collocated north of Ponca City. Due to the buildings around the Poncan Theater downtown, a normal 950MHz STL path is marginal at best. Also, KOKB normally carries programming originating at the Stillwater studios. We had to get creative.
Tieline Bridge-IT pairs are used for an intercity relay from Stillwater. This feeds the studio-quality audio over the Internet with very low delay. KOKB's main studio site is the Poncan Theater so that programming must pass through the new studios. Since a good path is not available, another pair of Tieline Bridge-IT units are used as the STL.
Because there is not a good STL path from downtown to the KLOR/KPNC transmitter site north of town, another approach had to be found. While we could use an IP system over an Internet connection, we had a better idea.
Have you had your fiber today?
Ponca City is a very technologically advanced community. The city has provided city-wide free Wi-fi. It has also wired most of the downtown area as well as other locations with fiber optics. Since the city has some of its radio equipment on the KLOR tower, fiber also goes to the transmitter site. A deal was made to use two strands of fiber between the Poncan Theater and the transmitter.
It is most common to use two fiber strands to make a computer network connection -- one in each direction. However, in this case Planet WDM media converters were used to provide two separate and independent bidirectional 1GB network connections. One is used as an extension of the main network providing Internet and remote control access for the site. Installation of the media converters and all of the station's fiber was also completed by Sierra Multimedia technicians.
An additional Jetstream audio engine was placed at the transmitter site connected to the others over one of the fiber-based network connections. This serves as the STL. Because of the topology of the networked engines, the audio literally comes right out of the console into the processing -- at the transmitter site! Connections to the transmitter equipment itself were done by the station's regular engineer, Tim Diehl of RF Solutions in Tulsa.
Due to the buildings downtown, satellite dishes could not be installed at the studio. Three dishes are in use at the transmitter site. Audio is connected to the Jetstream there and is available in all of the studios downtown.
Station owner Bill Coleman wanted a showcase. Large windows at one end of the on-air control rooms make the studios easily viewable from the sidewalk. Show business was at the forefront of the design. On the walls opposite the large windows are three large computer monitors. Their purpose is part function, but mostly show. One monitor is a graphical representation of the station audio displaying real-time VU meters as well as fader position and on/off status. Another monitor displays custom AutoPilot screens of the transmitter remote control operation. This screen can also be brought up on a desktop monitor adding keyboard and mouse control for transmitter operation. The third is the display from a Microgen modulation analyzer. This displays many off-air parameters with graphical modulation monitors, stereo image display and a spectrum baseband of the stereo composite. These monitors make up what has become known as Blinky-Flashies. They yield a very high-tech look to the studios.
Broadcast Tools ACS 8.2+RJ, SM-III
Burk ARC-Plus, AutoPilot Plus
DM Engineering Multiple Station EAS Adapter
Enberg Alert Monitor, Studio Warning Light
Gefen DVI Detective
Graham Studios cabinetry
Heil Sound PR40
Logitek Jetstream, Remora 10
Middle Atlantic racks, panels and hardware
Network Technologies KVM cables and splitters
Pilot WDM fiber/copper gigabit media converters
Radio Systems Studio Hub+
Sage Digital Endec
Startech VGA splitters and KVM switches
WRN program automation computers
Klotz is president of Sierra Multimedia, Bella Vista, AR.
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