Since 1978, SLB Radio Productions, Inc. (SLB) has produced award-winning public radio programming combining music, interviews, telephone talk and live performances from youth and adults. We distribute our programming to 7 FM radio stations, two cable tv stations, five Internet radio stations and aggregation services (e.g., Tune In, Simple Radio) and our personal website at slbradio.org. We provide workshops dedicated to self-expression and journalism to approximately 2,000 teens annually.
After being housed inside a traditional FM station for twenty five years, we made a decision to build our very own suite of studios to aid our radio programming and workshops. After many years of planning, these studios arrived at life in 2004 whenever we co-located our operations for the Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh as an element of its $20 million expansion.
With considerable industry, foundation and listener support, we are fortunate to have came up with studios of our dreams so that we can create high-quality radio and workshops. Our equipment includes audio consoles from Logitek Audio and Studer, microphones from AKG, Heil and Sennheiser, telephony equipment from Telos Systems, as well as other gear through the world’s leading broadcast equipment makers. This includes SAM Broadcaster Pro and SAM Broadcaster Cloud from Spacial Audio. After careful evaluation ultimately causing their selection in 2004, these Spacial Audio systems created the backbone in our library, playout and automation systems. Moreover, they have got stood the exam of energy, growing in features and functionality that have kept these systems in the head from the class despite numerous changes in digital audio, streaming technology and recordkeeping requirements.
SLB has a library well over 60,000 mp3 and wav tracks, all stored on the network server. A Sam Broadcaster is the fact SAM Broadcaster accesses these files by way of a database (installed as an element of setting SAM up) as opposed to directly. The database contains title, artist, album, play history, playlist categories along with other track-specific information and also the path to the actual audio file. As a result, SAM Broadcaster allows us to search our library with instant results since the search is founded on this data (vs. the audio tracks themselves, which take up over 60 GB). This feature alone – on the core of SAM Broadcaster and SAM Broadcaster Cloud since their very beginnings – is simply amazing and is also an idea I explain over and over to fellow broadcasters that are wowed with this fundamental principle. It allows us to create playlists, find requests, update metadata, add track-specific notes, review spin counts, print logs and perform hundreds of other tasks on the fly. And, obviously, we are able to also play music…beautifully and perfectly by just loading a SAM Broadcaster track in to a SAM Broadcaster Player in much exactly the same way as you would load a genuine mp3 file into Windows Media Player or iTunes – except with regards to SAM Broadcaster, everything happens instantly with complete user control.
We maintain six SAM Broadcaster licenses, each set up on a PC and each and every configured to do business with exactly the same music database to simplify our work flow. Because of this, I will use SAM Broadcaster to produce and save playlists at my desk with confidence that they will be accessible and playable when my studio shift begins. When it comes time for reports to ASCAP, BMI, SESAC and SoundExchange, I could export data from the in our PCs to have the data we must have.
The advantage of SAM Broadcaster and SAM Broadcaster Cloud extends far beyond this underlying principle. Among the many features we appreciate and make use of daily.
While SAM Broadcaster could be configured to run without having external mixer, SLB operates using standard broadcast consoles to blend multiple audio sources. Therefore, a crucial aspect of Sam Broadcaster is the actual way it interfaces with standard broadcast equipment. Fortunately, this really is easy! When we’re operating live, SAM Broadcaster is configured as a high-end playout system with its Playback Decks outputting to faders on our mixer (two stereo channels are supported) where it really is along with microphones, phone hybrids, along with other sources originating from beyond SAM. The output of our mixer will be fed back to SAM’s encoders for delivery to radio stations, aggregation services and direct listeners. These modes may be customized to fulfill virtually any requirement. In the event that xavxpb wish to feature automated programming, we are able to change SAM settings to go on to play through our mixer or directly to the stream. With all the introduction of SAM Broadcaster Cloud – we can allow the cloud-based system to adopt over in the touch of a button – seamlessly and perfectly. SAM Broadcaster Cloud is deserving of its very own article and it is a powerhouse, whether used alone or together with SAM Broadcaster to create great-sounding automation that can be managed with precision.
Limited space allows me to simply touch on the features and integrity of those products. Similar to anything new, you may have to learn principles and techniques which can be at first unfamiliar. Fortunately, it comes with an outstanding community forum, detailed documentation as well as a ticketed help system that has never let us down when we’ve needed it. After 12 years and tremendous modifications in our operations and technology – including an intermittent take a look at competing products – we still count on Spacial Audio as not merely the best product for us, but also the product we consistently recommend to our colleagues.