Tieline Technologies

Genie reaches Summit



Virgin Radio 953 (CKZZ-FM) is a Canadian radio station with studios located in Richmond, British Columbia. It has a 71.3kW transmitter, which is situated on the forward slopes of Mount Seymour
facing out over the Greater Vancouver region.

“Mount Seymour is very remote and there are no IP or ISDN links in that part of the world,” said Cody MacKay, Director of Engineering for Astral Radio in Vancouver since 2009. “I manage the engineering requirements for 3 stations and like many other stations in the region we use a point-to-point microwave link between our studios in Richmond and the transmitter site on Mount Seymour to transmit the signal for CKZZ.”

“Our ageing studio-to-transmitter codecs were becoming increasingly unreliable and a few months ago I decided to replace them with new generation IP codecs. I was impressed by the features offered by the Genie STL IP codec, so I called Tyler Everitt at Pippin Technical with the intention of putting the codecs to the test.”

“Tyler was very helpful in arranging the demo and when they arrived I connected them up to the internet to see how they performed over an unmanaged public IP link. I was very impressed. They were very easy to configure and were rock steady over the open internet over an extended test period, so I figured they would be pretty solid over a dedicated microwave link with loads of bandwidth.”

“We ordered a pair of the Genie STLs and installed one at the studio and the other at the transmitter. They were simple to install and are connected using AAC encoding at 192Kbps. The codecs are perfect for our purpose and probably the thing I was most impressed with is the multiple levels of redundancy offered by the Genies.”

“Dual power, dual Ethernet and audio backup are standard and the codecs also include STL-grade alarm options. The network failure detection feature also lets you switch seamlessly to an alternative ISP backup connection if your primary network connection is temporarily lost. This is managed by Tieline’s SmartStream PLUS software which can stream simultaneous
redundant packet streams from each Ethernet port.”

“The codecs have been installed and connected to our Dragonwave AirPair wireless backhaul link and on air continuously for months now and they haven’t missed a beat! They have performed flawlessly and sound great. When our other mission critical links need to be replaced I would have no hesitation in installing Genie STLs at these other sites.”