Most Popular Articles
Audio Processing Update
We spend a lot of time talking about the newer technologies being put to use in a radio station, but the fact of the matter is that the vast majority of our listeners still use analog radios to hear us. For that reason it's worthwhile discussing air-chain audio processing - the last device ahead of the transmitter.
Instead of rehashing all the standard features, I want to emphasize what makes the different devices from various manufacturers unique. At the end of this article I'll discuss comparison techniques that you can use to help decide which processor makes the most sense for your station. You can't base your decision on price and features alone - how the device sounds over the air should also factor into your decision.
For on-air processing, devices will have these features as standard:
■ Analog and AES inputs
■ Wideband automatic gain control (AGC)
■ Multiband AGC
■ Multiband limiting
■ Analog and AES outputs
■ Processing presets developed by the equipment designers
■ Full remote access to front panel controls (and often more) via Ethernet
These are the standard features we've come to expect from this sort of device. On-air processors for FM will of course include a stereo generator and composite outputs.
Omnia is one of the most well known audio processing manufacturers, and the Omnia.11 is the current flagship product in a long line of OTA audio processors. In addition to the standard features, it adds the following features (among others):
■ Livewire ins and outs in addition to AES, analog and composite outputs
■ Built-in composite low-pass filter to protect RDS/RBDS and SCA signals
■ Single rear-panel SCA input
■ Parallel processing path for HD, DAB or other lossy-codec streams; has its own final mixer and look-ahead limiting
■ Front panel 10.5" full-color touchscreen GUI
■ Embedded Web-browser for remote access
■ Up to 20 seconds of built-in diversity delay
Of course probably the most interesting feature of the Omnia.11 is its single sideband suppressed-carrier stereo generator capability (SSBSC). When using this feature, only the lower sidebands (of the suppressed 38kHz carrier) are in composite output. The level of those sidebands in the composite output is increased by 6dB (versus the level of the same sidebands, were the double sideband-suppressed carrier used) so that the overall modulation level stays the same. Your station will need to send an informal letter to the Commission requesting experimental authorization regarding use of SSBSC.
If you don't want to pay for extra features, there is a non-HD version of the Omnia.11 available as well.
- continued on page 2
Acceptable Use Policy blog comments powered by Disqus
[an error occurred while processing this directive]
Today in Radio History
The history of radio broadcasting extends beyond the work of a few famous inventors.
Read each issue online in our Digital Edition Format in your Web browser.
EAS Information More on EAS
The feed provides feeds for all US states and territories.
Need a calendar for your computer desktop? Use one of ours.
Information from manufacturers and associations about industry news, products, technology and business announcements.
Cumulus builds a new campus in Nashville to house its NASH family of brands
Browse Back Issues[an error occurred while processing this directive]
Also in the October Issue
- Trends in Technology: Alternate Transmitter Sites
- Tell City Waiver Denied
- 2014 Radio magazine Salary Survey
- Field Report: Steinberg UR44
- Repurposing Older Equipment