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Starting up Radio station in Ireland (Information Needed)

 
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Starting up Radio station in Ireland (Information Needed)
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Rob
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Joined: 20 Jul 2005
Posts: 16
Location: Ireland

Post Starting up Radio station in Ireland (Information Needed) Reply with quote
To begin with I'm very interested in buying some of the gear off your website but I am a newbie at the Radio game at this point, so I need some true directions and advice on the full list of equipment I will need.

Ok heres some details you can gauge by....

1. Need range to reach at least 25 miles

2. The antenna is going to be on top of a 2 story house (also not many high building or mountains near me)

Can I attach it to a CB radio antenna? I don't use the CB anymore but could use the antenna as extra height??


3. I don't have decks or any DJ equipment.. I have a PC and have downloaded SAM Party DJ which seems to be V.good.

I am sure the whole set up can be run from the PC right?


4. Then it comes to Cost Pray , whats this going to set me back in the pocket ? Costs for shipping and the equipment in total to Ireland?

----------------------------------------------------------

Ok thats some of the details I can think of at this time, need anymore info from me just ask

If the Admins would perfer to email me on the matter then here is my address support at gwgdesign dot com
Thu Jul 21, 2005 1:20 pm View user's profile Send private message MSN Messenger
Rob
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Location: Ireland

Post Reply with quote
Anyone out there ? Applause
Thu Jul 21, 2005 9:47 pm View user's profile Send private message MSN Messenger
5r
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Post Reply with quote
aha, we are here. check our site, there are many things allready writen there about it.
As far the CB antenna... You would have to change it. You would have bad swr with 1,5m transmitter on 11m antenna.
Sat Jul 23, 2005 6:29 pm View user's profile Send private message
Rob
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Post Reply with quote

Can you not give me a guide from the details I gave you?
Guide meaning....
What Transmitter would suit me best...
Antenna...
The cables I would need...

Come on you guys are the pros at this thing, no need for your customer to go diging on your website when you know off hand the stuff I might need I'm not lazy but I don't want to pick the wrong stuff if you know what I mean

and 20 miles range would do me.. forget the 25.

Sorry but I would perfer you guys selecting the equipment I would need, I am not very good at the radio side of things and would feel better if you picked it out, then I'll go have a look.

Thanks
Sat Jul 23, 2005 10:59 pm View user's profile Send private message MSN Messenger
radioboy
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Post re: go digging on the website Reply with quote
Rob,

I'm responding to your post in all sincerity and not trying to come off as a snob or eletist, so please take this advice from someone who's placed several stations on the air over the last quarter century, and who has taken the time to research the needs of the station, taking into account the specs and budget.

First off, you did half your homework. That is, knowing what your desired coverage range is and what your equipment currently in place is, and how you desire to interface with it. That's fine, and it would be entirely too easy for me to simply say go with the: MAX PRO III - 15W, a comet antenna, and if you truly desire more power, you could always spring for the 150W amplifier, which would certinally be ample power to ensure you cover your desired 20-25 mile range.

Now, the part I must pontificate with you about is your lack of desire to RESEARCH FOR YOURSELF, famaliarize yourself with the equipment, get to know the specs, LEARN about what equipment you desire to utilize, and then, come to the group and based on some assumptions and requirements you had in mind, ask the collective group for their considered opinions based on the conclusions you have come to.

Asking us to pick your equipment is tatamount to asking someone to write your term paper, and insisting that person pick a topic they are interested in, and just providing you with the finished result. Hell, we don't even know what your major is in, so it would be a total farce!

Microbroadcasters who take the time to learn about the equipment, and how it operates, and what the tolerences and specs are, (I'm not suggesting you learn how to build from kit, but at least educate yourself on the particulars) - tend to fare much better in the long run, because they are showing a willingness and desire to learn as much about their hobby or interest, and there for are more likely to take every stride and measure to ensure their stations are set up as technically good as possible and cause little or no interfearence to others.

Your situation cries out of irresponsible broadcasting to me, and I wouldn't be surprised to learn your station gets shut down or plagued with technical glitches due to a decieded lack of understanding from the operators side.

PCS takes EVERY measure to produce a very HIGH QUALITY product to ensure from the technical side their transmitters are within spec and do not cause interfearence, and perform VERY WELL if the proper steps and measures, and correct coupling to antenna's are taken into account.

The rest is up to the end user. Dude, I can tell you the CyberMax 15 I bought just over a year ago kicks some serious MAJOR ASS out here on Long Island/Queens & New York. My pirate station is one of the most listened to pirates in the Queens/Nassau area, and thanks to PCS, I have a well designed, reliable unit (along with several antenna's which I switch off using, for various coverage area's desired) and I get a good 12-15 mile range with just the max 15 watts from my unit.

Of course, I took time to research the antennas, cable, power supply, and read as much as I could to enhance my knowledge already and then some, and implemented my set up using the proper tools necessary to provide accurate and reliable measurements so as to ensure every watt of power being sent from the transmitter to the antenna is going to good use.

Seems to me that you are looking for a simple set & forget type of quick fix, turnkey package, and while there isn't anything inherently wrong with that, in my never to be humble opinion, since that's what you desire, then you should at least take the preliminary steps to do a little research on your own first, and then if you were to ask us if the PCI solution or the rack unit were best suited for your use, or the comet antenna -vs- the HIGH GAIN 3/4 wave vertical, or the HIGH GAIN 3/4 wave vertical were best suited for your use, we could offer our opinions with some insights.

I love microbroadcasting Rob, trust me, it's been something I've been involved in since I was about 13 years old, and I've been involved in assisting and setting up stations for a number of years for friends and interested persons I've become associated with, but I have to be honest and say that it dismays me when I see people just taking the lazy way out.

Learn, understand, absorb!.. an INFORMED broadcaster is a RESPONSIBLE broadcaster, and will likely not be shut down, because dude.. if the funky cookie company come a knockin', trust me- pleading ignorance about interfearence, or not knowing your rights, or how to act (or react) to anything they assert or try to pressure you into signing, can cause you a shipload of grief and aggravation.

Hell, I've got two scanners going and being monitored when I'm on the air, just so I know what's going on, I took the time to discover the field office frequencies in my area, and have better tabs on them then I'm sure they do on me,.. that's because I took the time to research every possible item to ensure my little peashooter of a station remains on for the audience I serve, and I am proud of that. You too should be proud of your station, and from the ground up, MAKE the time to learn about what it is you desire to achieve, you'll not only expand your mind, but you will likely turn out a much better product on air because it'll be a true reflection of you!~ and not just another automated jack-shit type station. Lord knows the airwaves are cluttered enough with that crap.

Good luck with your station.

((Radioboy))

_________________
--
Art is a lie that tells the truth." -- Pablo Picasso
> "Whatever Picasso said." --Radioboy
Sun Jul 24, 2005 2:46 pm View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website AIM Address Yahoo Messenger MSN Messenger ICQ Number
Rob
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Joined: 20 Jul 2005
Posts: 16
Location: Ireland

Post Reply with quote
Thanks Radioboy for that long detailed reply..

Although I'm not lazy

Ok I'll have a look on the site and select what I feel I will need, I hope your still here when I get back I need advice from someone with your experience.

Everyone who has/had a radio station starts off from somewhere, and ya can understand that I don't want to pick the wrong gear that costs a lot of yo yo's €€€. But that been said I understand the base of your reply and I shall get to it and see what I come up with from my own knowledge.

Cheers for your help again
Sun Jul 24, 2005 5:01 pm View user's profile Send private message MSN Messenger
Rob
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Location: Ireland

Post Reply with quote
Ok this is what I have come up with....

--------------------------------------
CYBER MAX FM 150W transmitter

COMET CFM-95SL Antenna
---------------------------------------

Now thats what I'm sure about but does Cables come with all this?

And what kind of slot does the tranmitter plug into on the PC ?
Sun Jul 24, 2005 5:10 pm View user's profile Send private message MSN Messenger
anon
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Joined: 11 May 2005
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Location: Northern California

Post Reply with quote
Hello Rob

Since it looks like you want to broadcast with 150 Watts, why not go for the "complete set-up" which comes with the Comet antenna, 150W Tx and 20m of high quality cable with ends attached. It's everything you need to be able to broadcast.

If you are going to use a PC for all of your audio, you'll just need an audio cable with an 1/8" mini-jack on one end (to connect to your computer sound card's line-out) and a RCA connector on the other end (to connect to the transmitter). That's it!

It sounds like this is going to be a pirate station? How are you planning on placing the antenna on top of the 2 story house? Will it be on a pole which reaches higher then the house? Will it be clearly visible to someone who is looking for a pirate broadcaster's antenna? Just something to think about.


Last edited by anon on Wed Sep 28, 2005 9:46 pm; edited 1 time in total
Sun Jul 24, 2005 7:39 pm View user's profile Send private message
Rob
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Post Reply with quote
Hi anon,

Ya its going to be a pirate station at the start and for awhile until I can get sponsorship from companies as the costs for going licenced is way WAY out of my personal budget.

I have read the details from the Irish Broadcast licensing Commission http://www.bci.ie.

Thanks for that info anon,
That package seems great alright and is all I need.

But would I have to get the SWR meter to tune my antenna as well ?
(I take it that means to tune it to 104.6 or 94.1 and so on yeah?)

Quote:
It sounds like this is going to be a pirate station? How are you planning on placing the antenna on top of the 2 story house? Will it be on a pole which reaches higher then the house? Will it be clearly visible to someone who is looking for a pirate broadcaster's antenna? Just something to think about.


Ya it is going to be on top of my house, maybe I could paint it the colour of the sky to conseal it

But ya it might look a bit out of place, I see what you mean alright.. Would you have any tips on that side of things? It sounds like a tuff spot to master that and hide it.

Quote:
If you are going to use a PC for all of your audio, you'll just need an audio cable with an 1/8" mini-jack on one end (to connect to your computer sound card's line-out) and a RCA connector on the other end (to connect to the transmitter). That's it!


Are those cables for sale on this website also?

Cheers again for the help and Info so far, top notch Applause
Sun Jul 24, 2005 9:02 pm View user's profile Send private message MSN Messenger
anon
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Post Reply with quote
Hi Rob-

You should be able to buy the RCA to mini-jack cable at any consumer electronics store (I'm not sure what the equivalent to Radio Shack is in Eire, but You can pick them up at radioshack for like US$5.00). You might even have one lying around - they often come with CD walkmans, Mp3 players, computer speakers, etc. By the way, RCA plugs are also somtimes called phono plugs or component plugs.

As for hiding the antenna, there are literally whole books on the subject so I'm not going to go into too much detail. Currently, I am using a home-made dipole antenna that is indoors on the second floor. Because it is indoors and it's a dipole, I am losing a lot of the range that I might get with a Comet antenna outdoors but I'm trading that off for annonymity. One guy I know made a dipole antenna by putting copper foil tape on an upstairs window and he gets pretty good range from that. Does the place you'll be broadcasting from have an attic? That might be an ok place to put the antenna. Will you be broadcasting from a remote location or a highly populated one? If your house is all alone at the top of a hill then you'll probably be found whether you hide the antenna or not but if you are in an apartment complex or a large neighborhood, hiding the antenna might buy you enough time to shut down if you know that someone is snooping around. There's also the option of using a STL (Studio-Transmitter Link) which you can also buy from PCS but then your adding a lot more complexity to your set-up.

About tuning the antenna, the web page says "Fully wideband, no tuning necessary" so it sounds like you won't need and SWR meter to adjust the Comet antenna. However, you might get slightly better performance if you do tune it and I personally feel like an SWR meter is necessary if your going to build your own antenna.

Since it looks like your new to the whole radio thing, might you consider starting with one of the cheaper 15W complete set-ups (either PC based or stand alone)? You could start with a 15 Watt station and play around with antenna types and location and see how far you can get a quality signal with that set-up and then add a 150W amplifier when you're ready. Also, if you get caught, you only lose 400-500 euro worth of equipment instead of the 1600 euro that the 150W setup costs.

I think I should follow Sir Nigel's lead and point out that I don't work for PCS, I'm just a happy customer and FM radio nut.
Mon Jul 25, 2005 8:14 pm View user's profile Send private message
Rob
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Joined: 20 Jul 2005
Posts: 16
Location: Ireland

Post Reply with quote
Thanks anon,
I think your right, I'll go for the PROFESSIONAL RACK ENCLOSURE SETUP 15W to start off with and get some experience before getting a larger set up.

Ya I have an attic, so I might take a look up there and see if anything can be done.

I live in a town with pop of about 20,000 people and live 5 miles from Dublin with 3 large towns about 3 and 6 miles away from me, so there should be lots of listeners...(Well not compared to the USA, I'm sure you have in the 200,000 area from yours alone)

Also did you say I can add the 150w AMPLIFIER to this 15w kit set up when I want? Does that mean it will boost the power from 15W to 150W or add-on 150W to 15W giving me 165W ?? d'oh!

Also would you know if my broadcasting would effect the transmission of mine and my neighbors satellite TV dish ?

Thanks a lot for your help so far, I'll buy ya a pint or two If I ever go to cali USA

Rob
Tue Jul 26, 2005 10:37 pm View user's profile Send private message MSN Messenger
anon
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Post Reply with quote
Hi Rob

Where I live in Northern California is pretty remote so if I was broadcasting a strong signal, I might be able to reach 20,000 people. It's remote enough that I doubt you'd make it here to buy me a pint so I'll just have to come to Ireland for it!

The 150 W Amp takes a 4 watt input which means you'd have to turn your 15 watt rig down. It will then output a total power of between 125 and 150 watts. Also, keep in mind that the antenna you use will also change your output power (Effective Radiating Power or ERP). The comet antenna has a gain of 3.4dBi which I've been told is roughly double your power. That means that 15 Watts into the comet antenna will give you roughly 30 Watts ERP; 125 watts would give you roughly 250 watts ERP (someone correct me if my assumptions here are off). That's why in my earlier post I suggested that you spend some time with low power and work on getting a really good antenna set up before going to a higher power - antenna type and placement makes a big difference.

I don't think that FM broadcasting would affect you neighbors satelite TV reception (which I think is up around 12 GHz) but it might affect their broadcast TV reception if they use that for local stations. Just keep your signal as clean as possible, don't over-modulate, etc. I don't think it'll be a problem with the 15 Watt package, PCS makes some really clean stuff. You might try turning on the transmitter and then going over to your neighbors house and ask if their TV reception is ok, you can say that you can't get your TV to work or something - that's what I've done to make sure I'm not causing interference without letting anyone know that I'm broadcasting.

By the way, I just noticed that the 15 Watt package doesn't come with coax but the 150 Watt package does. That's wierd. Anyway, make sure you order some coax too then. Good luck!
Wed Jul 27, 2005 7:03 am View user's profile Send private message
Rob
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Post Reply with quote
coax

Whats that for?
I don't have a clue what it is or which one would suit me from the list on their website.
Which one do you think I should get?

I have already placed my order without the coax cable so I better get back onto them before the order is shipped so they can pop it in the box also.
Wed Jul 27, 2005 9:12 am View user's profile Send private message MSN Messenger
anon
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Post Reply with quote
Coax is short for co-axial cable, you probably have some going between your VCR and TV or to your cable box if you have cable. Radio coax requires different ends though, you'll need a PL-239 to plug into the SO-239 on the antenna and a BNC connector for the transmitter end. Take a look at the "WHAT ELSE WILL YOU NEED AND IT WASN'T INCLUDED?" section under the 15W complete set-up for more info.
Wed Jul 27, 2005 11:10 pm View user's profile Send private message
Rob
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Thats grand anon thanks, I get the gist of what it is now..I think I have one on my CB radio antenna as well.

Well I got the ball rolling with a website for the new station which will be known as Twist FM.

Heres the address: www.twistfm.com

Tell me what ya think of the site so far, remember most of the features and buttons are not hooked up yet, only the forum at the moment is on.

So what cha think?
what can be added to it in your opinion?

Looking forward to the input

cheers,
Rob
Thu Jul 28, 2005 9:06 am View user's profile Send private message MSN Messenger
CaLLe
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Post NiCe WeBsItE! Reply with quote
It's looking good.
Thu Jul 28, 2005 10:50 pm View user's profile Send private message
desireradio
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Post Reply with quote
HI Rob, good luck with the new station, Maplin at Jervis St Dublin & Blanchardstown should be able to sort you with some of those RCA cables, chimney mounting kits etc.
Was planning to start my own low powered station a while back but lack of a transmission site has forced me to put it on ice for a while!

Serious lack of anything to listen to in Dublin at the moment. Comreg are everywhere. The last full-time station to venture on air, Capital FM lasted 8 whole days.
They also called to every pirate in Cork during the week !
Ireland must have the strictest anti-pirate policy in Europe now.
hope u manage to keep them away but it won't be easy!

What kind of music u planning to play?
Sat Jul 30, 2005 11:46 am View user's profile Send private message
Rob
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Post Reply with quote
Howya desireradio,

Cheers for that, I'll pop out there someday next week and pick it up.

Yeah I was reading http://www.radiowaves.fm, seems like ComReg are clamping down big time on pirate stations all over the place.

I'd be playing Softrock (U2,The Killers,Green Day..etc)
Some Hip/Hop..
And dance music more in the weekend mark, plus the odd bit of hardhouse.
Nice Mix at the right times


How about yourself?
Do you have much knowledge on the radio front? or are ya very interested and starting off like myself, its been more of a hobbie to be honest then a business, but money from advertising (if it happens) would be nice to put towards costs and maybe a licence in the near future..who knows
Sat Jul 30, 2005 3:40 pm View user's profile Send private message MSN Messenger
desireradio
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Post Reply with quote
A beginner myself too... got an interest in it from listening to some of the former pirates in Dublin, Freedom, Sugar, Nova 946 etc

Would like to think I know a bit about radio, but just from what I've read on places like this and Radiowaves - the chance to put it all into practice hasn't come up yet!

I'll tune in for the dance when u get up and running, that would definitely be my area!
If i ever do get on air it would probably be a non stop dance oriented format with some chart and r&b thrown in. I'm located in the Midlands where there's nothing like that available.

Don't think i would accept advertising, that would prob put the legals on my case more quickly (although financing the station is difficult without ads)

Anyway best of luck, keep us posted when you launch, and who knows you might be in the right place at the right time if the BCI advertise licences!
Sat Jul 30, 2005 11:36 pm View user's profile Send private message
Rob
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Ya sure I will keep ya posted, if your into hardhouse my mate said he will play live on his LP desks on weekends. Hes pretty good on them and has been using them for 2 or 3 years now.
Wed Aug 03, 2005 8:10 pm View user's profile Send private message MSN Messenger
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