WELH http://ripr.org en TheEC: New STL at 88.1FM http://ripr.org/post/theec-new-stl-881fm <p></p><p><strong>UPDATE 7/22:&nbsp;</strong>After a weekend of solid operation, we've moved out of "beta" and into "gold", meaning when you listen to 88.1, you're hearing audio that's coming across the new microwave STL.</p><p>------------------------------------------</p><p><a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z6ODMDtG6-I"><strong>Good news everyone!</strong></a></p><p>Longtime Engineer's Corner readers know that we've had, well, <a href="http://ripr.org/post/theec-digital-chirps-881">"issues" with the STL</a> or "Studio/Transmitter Link" for our 88.1FM signal in Providence. &nbsp; The STL is what carries the audio from our studios in downtown Providence to the transmitter/tower at the Wheeler Farm in Seekonk.</p><p>Now a <a href="http://ripr.org/post/theec-new-stl-dish-881-installed">couple weeks ago we revealed</a> that half of a new wireless microwave STL was installed, and that the other half would be installed soon. &nbsp;Today, we fired it up for the first time and the results were gratifyingly positive!</p><p> Fri, 18 Jul 2014 22:10:16 +0000 Aaron Read 36961 at http://ripr.org TheEC: New STL at 88.1FM TheEC: New STL Dish at 88.1 - INSTALLED! http://ripr.org/post/theec-new-stl-dish-881-installed <p><u><strong style="line-height: 1.5;">UPDATE @ 1pm&nbsp;: 88.1FM is back at normal power!</strong></u> &nbsp;Pics are available on our Twitter feed <a href="https://twitter.com/RINPR/status/479266377044213760">here</a>, <a href="https://twitter.com/RINPR/status/479288601365053440">here</a>, <a href="https://twitter.com/RINPR/status/479292528861011968">here</a> and <a href="https://twitter.com/RINPR/status/479311467628343296">here</a>. &nbsp; <em>By the way, many of these pics were taken with a stock iPhone 5S using <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00AQUCPFC/ref=oh_details_o00_s00_i00?ie=UTF8&amp;psc=1">this telephoto lens attachment</a>. &nbsp;Pretty good for $45!</em></p><p>----------------------------------------------</p><p><strong style="line-height: 1.5;">On Wednesday June&nbsp;18th, beginning around 9:30 or&nbsp;10am</strong><span style="line-height: 1.5;">, 88.1FM will be running on the backup transmitter &amp; antenna for a few hours to install new equipment on the top of the tower. &nbsp; We must run on the lower-power backup for the health &amp; safety of our tower climber.</span></p><p>The backup operates using a one-bay vertically-polarized omnidirectional antenna and about one-tenth our normal power. &nbsp;&nbsp;</p><p><br /><b>THIS WILL NOT IMPACT OUR 91.5 OR 102.7FM SIGNALS, NOR OUR WEBCAST.</b></p><p><strong><a href="https://twitter.com/RINPR">Keep watching our Twitter feed for updates.</a></strong></p><p> Tue, 17 Jun 2014 23:25:47 +0000 Aaron Read 35356 at http://ripr.org TheEC: New STL Dish at 88.1 - INSTALLED! TheEC: Air Conditioning at 88.1FM http://ripr.org/post/theec-air-conditioning-881fm <p>Regular readers of the ENGINEER'S CORNER might recall <a href="http://ripr.org/post/theec-air-conditioning-1027fm">my story about air conditioning at our 102.7FM transmitter in Narragansett Pier</a>. &nbsp; Well now I'm pleased to report that we have air conditioning at 88.1FM WELH in Seekonk as well!</p><p>In many ways, this is an even bigger deal; 102.7 had a hefty vent fan system that could move a lot of air. &nbsp;Sure, if the air outside was hot, it means the air inside was hot, too. &nbsp;Usually you can't cool a room using outside air below about +10F degrees above outside air temps. &nbsp; So if it's 90F outside, it's 100 to 105F inside...ugh! &nbsp;</p><p>And at 88.1, we didn't really have even that. &nbsp;The transmitter site is an 8x10ft shed with a single 12 inch desk fan blowing air out one of the wall vents, and no insulation whatsoever on the walls or ceiling. &nbsp;Temps routinely broke 120F inside, even when it was only 70 to 80F outside.</p><p> Thu, 22 May 2014 14:17:53 +0000 Aaron Read 33986 at http://ripr.org TheEC: Air Conditioning at 88.1FM TheEC: 88.1 Studio/Transmitter Link http://ripr.org/post/theec-881-studiotransmitter-link <p></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">In light of ongoing issues with the Studio/Transmitter Link (</span>STL<span style="line-height: 1.5;">) for </span>WELH<span style="line-height: 1.5;"> 88.1, we have implemented a new </span>STL<span style="line-height: 1.5;">&nbsp; schema. &nbsp; If you heard a lot of </span><a href="http://ripr.org/post/theec-digital-chirps-881" style="line-height: 1.5;">odd audio dropouts on 88.1 today</a><span style="line-height: 1.5;">, that was the reason.</span></p><p>The good news is that we should have a pretty good temporary solution in place, and a solid path for a permanent solution is on the horizon (tentatively scheduled for mid-March). &nbsp; Best of all, I was able to put in a new(er)&nbsp;<a href="http://www.optimod.fm/">Orban Optimod 8100A</a>&nbsp;audio processor to replace the less-capable&nbsp;<a href="http://www.bswusa.com/Broadcast-On-Air-Processing-Inovonics-718-David-III-FM-Broadcast-Processor-P2989.aspx">Inovonics DAVID-III</a>. &nbsp;There's a little&nbsp;<a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sibilant">sibilance</a>&nbsp;still, so I need to tweak the settings. &nbsp;But overall the sound should be much louder, fuller, and more consistent.</p><p>Read on for more details...</p><p> Tue, 28 Jan 2014 03:08:11 +0000 Aaron Read 28255 at http://ripr.org TheEC: 88.1 Studio/Transmitter Link TheEC: Digital "Chirps" on 88.1 http://ripr.org/post/theec-digital-chirps-881 <p><strong style="line-height: 1.5;">UPDATE (Jan.10):</strong><span style="line-height: 1.5;">&nbsp; Verizon sent a trio of techs today to examine the Digital Lines. &nbsp;They found a splice point on a pole near the Wheeler Farm end of the circuit where water had gotten past the weatherproofing. &nbsp;The splice was re-done, with fresh (and better) weatherproofing sealant applied, and a weather box placed around it.</span></p><p>That's likely the culprit here: the problems started during the snowstorm, so probably water got in there and expanded/contracted repeatedly as the water froze and melted. &nbsp;That expansion wreaks havoc with (relatively) fragile copper telco wiring.</p><p>As of 3pm we are back on our main STL. &nbsp;We've noticed the volume levels seemed to have changed somewhat with this repair, too, so we're still tweaking things.</p><p>----------------------------</p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;"><strong>ORIGINAL POST (Jan.3):&nbsp;</strong>Ever since the </span><a href="http://ripr.org/post/winter-storm-2014-continuing-coverage-and-closings-updates" style="line-height: 1.5;">hefty snowstorm and extreme cold on Thursday night</a><span style="line-height: 1.5;">, our 88.1 signal in Providence has been experiencing "digital chirps" now and then. &nbsp;</span></p><p> Fri, 03 Jan 2014 21:58:44 +0000 Aaron Read 27187 at http://ripr.org TheEC: Digital "Chirps" on 88.1 TheEC: FCC License Renewal http://ripr.org/post/theec-fcc-license-renewal <p>Sharp-eared listeners may have noticed some announcements this morning on RIPR, having to do with our FCC broadcast licenses.&nbsp; In fact, listeners to every radio station in Rhode Island, and all of New England, will be hearing similar announcements today.&nbsp;&nbsp; It&rsquo;s because every eight years, AM &amp; FM broadcast licenses expire and must be renewed; these announcements are required by the FCC as part of that process.</p><p></p> Tue, 01 Oct 2013 14:43:46 +0000 Aaron Read 22512 at http://ripr.org TheEC: FCC License Renewal