FM Extra

IBOC, HD Radio, FM eXtra, DRM, Importers, Exporters, Exgines...digital radio spoken here!
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brandonb959
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FM Extra

Post by brandonb959 » Thu May 31, 2012 8:02 pm

Anybody else used the FM Extra system? We tried one a couple of years back on a C1 and could pick up the digital fairly well indoors at the studio >30 miles from the transmitter but I guess that all depends on your injection. It seems to me that this would be an enormously easier system to integrate into current FM radio than HD radio which requires an enormous investment in equipment. Correct me if I'm wrong, but as a subcarrier, Fm Extra will have 100% of analog power as opposed to 1:10 ratio like HD? But as with any type of media the name of the game is the availability of RECEIVERS, RECEIVERS, RECEIVERS!!

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RFWarrior
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Re: FM Extra

Post by RFWarrior » Thu May 31, 2012 8:22 pm

Definitely easier to integrate, definitely lower cost to implement, reasonable coverage - but like you said, receivers... for FM Extra they're so scarce they make HD receivers look popular :shock:

Best,

Jeff
Jeff Welton
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Nautel
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Deep Thought
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Re: FM Extra

Post by Deep Thought » Thu May 31, 2012 10:07 pm

One of my clients ran it on their C2 with great results but the big boys basically killed it by ignoring it. They all had their money in Ibiquity's interference generator.
Mark Mueller • Mueller Broadcast Design • La Grange, IL • http://www.muellerbroadcastdesign.com

brandonb959
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Re: FM Extra

Post by brandonb959 » Thu May 31, 2012 10:43 pm

Forgive my ignorance of HD and IBOC, but from my understanding there are basically two ways to implement it. (1) a new transmitter that is designed for it such as an 816HD and proper exciter or (2) a separate digital transmitter put into a combiner with the current analog transmitter?

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RFWarrior
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Re: FM Extra

Post by RFWarrior » Fri Jun 01, 2012 6:54 am

That sums it up - although for the "two transmitter option" there are several options for how they are combined:

1. If antenna space or structure limitations are involved, they can be combined with an injector such as the ERI 788 series (low loss injector that doesn't require the massive power waste of previous generation IBOC injectors). This is overall frequently the most cost effective, but it requires more space in the transmitter site.
2. If there is an aux antenna on the tower (best to be on the same tower, although I've seen it done on separate towers as well), each transmitter can be fed to a different antenna, with combining happening in free space. This requires no footprint in the site and is a cost effective option, but there are frequently issues with pattern replication, or interference between the digital and analog signals as you venture away from the antennas out of the near field. It also requires a circulator to keep the analog signal from feeding back into the digital transmitter and causing shutbacks from SWR.
3. If budget isn't an issue and the tower can handle the weight, a dual feed antenna, such as the ERI Lynx, where both analog and HD signals are run up the tower and independently connected to the antenna, then combined internally (each bay has its own combiner). This gives best pattern replication and absolute lowest overall cost of operation down the road, but has the highest implementation cost and does put a significant wind/weight load on the tower.

Alternately, in a multi-station site with a channel combiner, you can backfeed the digital carrier into the combiner reject load port - assuming the combiner has the headroom to handle the additional power. This is also a workable solution in a lot of cases.

Ultimately, as I've said before, each situation is different, so cost of implementation will vary depending on the specific installation - I'd need to know more about a particular station before I ventured to guess cost for upgrade... and even then, it would only apply to that individual station. What might work for one may not be the best solution for another.

Best,

Jeff
Jeff Welton
Regional Sales Manager - Central U.S.
Nautel
Toll free: 1-877-662-8835, ext. 5127
Halifax Number: 902-823-5127
Quincy Number: 217-919-0189
Cell: 902-489-1635
jwelton@nautel.com

brandonb959
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Re: FM Extra

Post by brandonb959 » Fri Jun 01, 2012 2:04 pm

Well thats good to hear :) If we did go HD in a few years time I would want to keep our Harris 25K I've just spent a lot of money and a lot of time restoring the old girl.

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billcroghan
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Re: FM Extra

Post by billcroghan » Fri Jun 01, 2012 4:14 pm

We tried the FM Extra a couple of years ago for a demo during the NAB show here in Vegas, by putting it on an 100 watt translator located on Black Mt. Henderson. It took Lyle Henry very little time, like 15 minutes to hook it up and get it running using a multi disk CD player as the source. When we drove around it sounded fine in my Expedition on Lyles receiver, but it could not penetrate the convention hall enough to be useable. The Translator came in fine inside the hall. The signal was great where we could receive it, but I agree with Jeff that the receivers just don't seem to be out there.

Bill

delahund
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Re: FM Extra

Post by delahund » Sun Dec 09, 2012 1:55 pm

I have been using FMextra for 3+ years as a private audio feed to remote studios. I have two units running two digital stereo feeds on each unit. They work fantastic. With an outside antenna and the aruba receivers you can get coverage within 75-80 percent of your station coverage area. Sound quality is decent. It's too bad good ideas don't always win out. It kind of reminds me of the old AM stereo mess. FMextra would have been an inexpensive solution for transitioning FM to digital. More time and resources could have then been spent on getting receivers to market. Broadcasters would have been willing to take the plunge and bet on the future, because of the minimal cost to implement....around 10k per station.

sofocado
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Re: FM Extra

Post by sofocado » Fri Dec 05, 2014 10:37 am

The radio station I work for will like to implement FMeEXTRA in all the SCA station that they have here in the US. So far they are broadcasting 24/7 In NYC, Washington DC, Boston MA, Houston TX, and Chicago IL. Looking to go to Florida too. I have looked different sites in regards the receivers. Only one company that distribute the radios respond, but they only have 200 in stock. we have plenty of listeners and every day we distribute new anolog SCA radios, but the quality is bad. Is there any supplier that will able to provide constant flow of FMeXTRA radios? I am asking this, because if there is a constant flow of radios we will invest in FMextra. I talked to the station that provide the SCA frequency to us and he says that they are willing to implemented it, but recommend to find out about the receivers. If any one have any information about a supplier that will give us this service will be great. Thanks.

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Deep Thought
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Re: FM Extra

Post by Deep Thought » Fri Dec 05, 2014 1:43 pm

Ah...the classic chicken or egg dilemma.

I would imagine that if you were to offer a purchase order for, say, 1,000 or more receivers at a time you'd be able to get them to make 'em.
Mark Mueller • Mueller Broadcast Design • La Grange, IL • http://www.muellerbroadcastdesign.com

sofocado
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Re: FM Extra

Post by sofocado » Wed Jan 14, 2015 12:35 pm

Vucast kill the dilemma. Bext only have a few of those radios and vucast has not provide any more radios. The only way to they can sell radios if Vucast provide them. I was recommended to contact Vucast regarding the distribution of the radios. I have not get any answers. :(

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