New stations interested in becoming interconnected as part of the PRSS® will need to purchase downlink and PRSS ContentDepot® equipment.
Each station's equipment requirements will be different due to local conditions and the amount of satellite-delivered programming the station expects to use. The following technical specifications and approximate costs for earth terminal equipment and services are provided for the benefit of stations intending to join the PRSS. Descriptions are intentionally brief. The "Installation" item below provides only general guidelines in recognition of widely varying regional pricing and of regular fluctuations in such pricing. Stations are encouraged to obtain competitive local prices.
If you need additional assistance, you may contact PRSS Engineering at 202.513.2632.
Frequency Coordination (Optional) $600-$1,700
Note: The price range varies between the minimum amount required for a location with low microwave interference and the maximum required for analysis of a site with multiple interference cases.
The process consists of two steps: 1) the prediction of possible interference at the desired site location; and 2) the coordination with other users of the 4 GHz spectrum in the area to assure continuous interference-free operation. The resulting report, which is required for FCC registration of the downlink, is provided by the coordinator and serves as the basis for ongoing protection from potential future sources of interference. NPR contracts with a frequency coordination firm that provides a group-buy, discounted price. The lower end of the above price range is possible, but not guaranteed.
Minimum diameter of main reflector: 3.7 meters. Minimum gain at 4 GHz: 41 dB. Priority should be placed on sidelobe rejection performance to reduce signal ingress from adjacent satellites at 2" and 4" spacing. The antenna should conform to the FCC's 2" antenna performance envelope. Reflectors utilizing perforated metal are not recommended.
Installation $2,500 (and up)
The total installation cost of a downlink antenna will include some or all of the following: civil works, foundation preparation, trenching, conduit, cabling, antenna mounting, aiming, and fencing. The antenna is typically located on the ground, mounted on a concrete pad, and surrounded by a fence. Buried cabling between the studio and antenna should be installed in three-inch or larger PVC conduit and buried at a depth of at least 18 inches. The cable route design should minimize turns, which should be accomplished by sweeps, not by elbows. Stations must be sure that the route and depth of the trench for the conduit will not interfere with existing cables, pipes, conduits or any utility. Since the costs for installation-related items vary widely by region, local quotations should be sought.
Antenna Shipping $300 (and up)
This cost is based solely on the mileage between the proposed downlink and the antenna manufacturer.
Ground Rod $50
The antenna mount and any conducting materials on the antenna should be grounded for lightning protection of station equipment.
Phase Locked Loop/Low Noise Block Downconverter (PLL/LNB) $250 (and up)
The block downconverter mounts on the antenna feed port in place of a Low Noise Amplifier (LNA) and converts the C-band satellite signal to L-band for delivery indoors to the receiving equipment. The converter should convert 3.7-4.2 GHz to 950-1450 MHz, with frequency inversion, with as low a noise temperature as is available at a reasonable price. Local oscillator frequency stability should be no greater than ±12 kHz. The PLL/LNB is powered through the center conductor of the coaxial cable by the indoor downconverter. California Amplifier model 140194 or equivalent.
Coaxial Cable, 75 Ohm, L-band Approx. $0.25/feet
RG-11 type cable with a foam dielectric will work for all but very long runs (over 500 feet). The attenuation at L-band frequencies should be 8 dB/100 feet or less. The total cable attenuation between the antenna and the receiver rack should not exceed 30 dB at 1500 MHz. The cable must be terminated with a male type F connector at each end. The outdoor end must be weatherproof. Commscope type 5916 or equivalent is recommended.
L-band Signal Splitter (four-way) $35
The studio end of the cable from the antenna is split four ways to feed the two downconverters, with two additional outputs for future expansion. The input and output connectors are female type F. Note: four-way L-Band splitters should be specified as having all ports diode steered for passing DC voltage.
Basic Automation System (Quantity 1) $6,750.00 (and up)
An automation system takes in audio files from a storage receiver via a network connection, then prepares and plays those audio files at the times specified by station staff. Commercially available systems vary greatly in cost and complexity. ContentDepot receivers can communicate with most systems on the market; be sure to ask potential vendors if their system is compliant with ContentDepot standards.
Satellite Receivers (Quantity 2) $9,626.00 ($4,813.00 each) IDC SFX 4104 Pro Audio
The Pro Audio receiver captures both streams and audio files in a single unit. The Pro Audio's stream decoders play live satellite-delivered audio, and each unit has four independently tuned stereo outputs/ports to stream live programming. A significant amount of audio traffic in the ContentDepot is delivered exclusively as audio files. The Pro Audio's storage receiver connects to the station downlink, receives flies from a satellite channel, and then exports those files to a station automation system. Only one Pro Audio receiver is required for normal operations, but two are recommended to provide a "shelf spare" in case of failure.
Network Cable (Quantity 1) $8.00 each
CAT5E or equivalent network cables are used to connect the station automation system to the storage receiver.
L-band Jumper Cables (Quantity 3) $15.00 ($5.00 each)
The jumpers are used to carry the L-band signal from the three open ports in the 4-way splitter to the two audio decoders and the file transfer receiver. Note: All L-Band jumpers should be constructed of RG-6 type cable terminated with F-Type male connectors.
Please note: This is information for the legacy 4104 receivers, if you are looking for information on the future system receivers please click here.
The ContentDepot® is easy for most stations to get up and running. A minimum level of connectivity and interface to your audio setup is required for ContentDepot to operate. After the initial installation, you may elect to integrate the ContentDepot into your production systems in more complex ways as required by your operation.
The base ContentDepot equipment package includes two IDC SFX 4104 Pro Audio satellite receivers. Each Pro Audio receiver captures both streams and audio files in a single unit. The Pro Audio's stream decoders play live satellite-delivered audio, and each unit has four independently tuned stereo outputs/ports to stream live programming. A significant amount of audio traffic in the ContentDepot is delivered exclusively as audio files. The Pro Audio's storage receiver connects to the station downlink, receives files from a satellite channel, and then exports those files to a station automation system. Only one Pro Audio receiver is required for normal operations, but two are recommended to provide a "shelf spare" in case of failure. Your new receivers will be in an extended test/checkout mode for several weeks and/or months. Do not use files and streams from the new receivers on-air until the new system is officially operational.
The ContentDepot is easy for most stations to get up and running. A minimum level of connectivity and interface to your audio setup is required for ContentDepot to operate. After the initial installation, you may elect to integrate the ContentDepot into your production systems in more complex ways as required by your operation.
What the installation entails
The following is an outline of the steps to install the new ContentDepot® IDC SFX 4104 Pro Audio satellite receivers. More detailed installation instructions will be provided with your equipment and online.
|1||Ensure that the L-band feed into the equipment rack has two open ports||If you need more ports, install an additional L-band splitter into your RF distribution system. Of course, choose the least disruptive time for a service interruption.|
Install two receivers (SFX 4104 Pro Audio) into the rack.
Log on to the ContentDepot portal to review your V2 Equipment listing to determine your receivers' proper decoder lineup based on serial numbers. The V2 listing is located in your customer Profile under the Delivery tab.
Save the cartons and packing materials in case you ever need to send a unit back to the Satellite Depot for repair.
|Ensure that you have at least one rack space above and below each unit, and sufficient AC power nearby.|
|3||Connect the L-band feed to both receivers||The L-band feed goes to the center RF inlet on each receiver. The center inlet feeds signal to both tuners in the receiver.|
|4||Power up the receivers||Wait until the green “control” LED lights up|
|5||Enable LNB bias Power Supply||Using the front panel navigate to L-Band 2 – Press Green Check key(enter) – Now press down arrow to 2nd LNB and press Green enter key again – At Power Supply Enable/Disable screen confirm Power Supply is Enabled. If disabled, Press enter key then up/dn arrow to change selection to Enabled then enter again to accept new setting.|
|6||Allow the receivers to run for 24 hours||You need to let your receiver run for 24 hours so that the unique identifier associating the receiver with your station and any software updates for your receiver are sent daily.|
|7||As required, configure the Ethernet ports on the receivers to work with your existing production Local Area Network (LAN).
To configure the IP addresses of your receiver, use the front-panel controls. See “Controlling the Receiver with the Front Panel LCD Display/Keypad Interface” in the IDC SFX Pro Audio Series Satellite Receiver User's Guide delivered with the receiver.
The username and password required to configure the receivers is the same as in your existing SFX 2100R file receivers.
The pre-configured network settings for the receiver are as follows:
Alternatively, connect the storage receiver (port NET 2) and an Ethernet-ready local workstation on the 192.168.1.1/24 network. Then, navigate to http://192.168.1.102 using a web browser. Note this IP address is different from the generic address in your existing SFX2100R storage receiver. It was changed to avoid conflicts at sites that use the generic addresses.
The receiver’s start page displays automatically as the receiver boots.
|8||Connect the NET 1 interface of the storage receiver to the same LAN segment as the
|9||If you are using an existing automation system, map the appropriate storage receiver drive as a network drive.||
If your automation/playback system works with the current ContentDepot storage receivers, it should work exactly the same way with your new Pro Audio receivers.
The portal should already have subscription information for your receivers. Contact your station’s local ContentDepot administrator if you require a login.
The following documentation is available to assist you with the installation of ContentDepot Equipment:
The ContentDepot is designed to interface to the most commonly used station automation systems. We have worked with several automation manufacturers to develop these interfaces. A current list of these vendors is available by clicking on the "Automation Vendor Compliance List" tab below.
Please contact your automation vendor directly for more information about how your system will interface to the ContentDepot.
Last updated 05/2013
Each vendor in the list below has been contacted by or has contacted NPR Distribution regarding the interface between ContentDepot® storage receivers and station automation/playout systems. In all cases, the vendor has certified that their product can ingest and play ContentDepot files; in most cases, the vendor has tested their systems with sample files.
This is not an exhaustive list. In general, any automation/playback system commercially available in the US will play ContentDepot audio files. Please note that in most cases either a new application or an upgrade from the vendor is required to interface with ContentDepot receivers. There may be local costs involved to bring a station up to compliance with the ContentDepot.
Station staff should contact their vendor to confirm compliance and any work that must be performed to bring their system up-to-date.
|Arrakis||Digilink (various versions including Xtreme)||
6604 Powell St.
|B.E.||AudioVAULT (all versions)||
4100 North 24th Street Quincy, IL 62305
|BSI||Simian, Wavecart, Wavestation||
503 East 11th Avenue
|Dalet||Dalet, Dalet Plus||
110 Wall Street, 2nd Floor
29444 Northwestern Highway
5875 Trinity Parkway, Suite 105
195 Fairfield Ave, Suite 1C
410 Park Avenue, 15th Floor
1891 N. Gaffey St, Suite 233
|RCS||Master Control, NexGen (and variants)||
445 Hamilton Avenue, 7th Floor
|Google Radio Automation||SS32, Maestro, Digital Universe||
|SMARTS||Smartcaster, UDS Radio Suite (OnAir Digital products)||
2508 West Main Street
|WireReady||WireReady, CartReady, ControlReady.|
|Rivendell Open Source Radio Automation||Rivendell||
For Tutorials, How-tos and FAQs visit Rivendell’s Wiki page:
February 27, 2012
PRSS ContentDepot Station Automation Interfaces V1.5 - New version
This station automation interface specification is available to all automation system vendors who expressed interest in interfacing with satellite receivers delivered as part of the Public Radio Satellite System (PRSS) ContentDepot. If you are interested in working with the PRSS to interface to the ContentDepot, please contact the PRSS Help Desk 1.800.971.7677.
February 16, 2005
This is an additional document that describes—from a more technical than operational standpoint—the technical interface between the ContentDepot delivery subsystem, which includes storage receivers at stations, and station automation systems. You could think of this document as an enhancement or background to the SAS interface specification.
For more information about station automation, please contact the PRSS Help Desk 1.800.971.7677
Find products and services of special interest to the public radio community.
About the PRSS, the ContentDepot, for customer support or to find your account rep.