Gateway Delivers Flexibility for Tarleton State
By Lance McFarlin, General Manager of KTRL 90.5 FM and KXTR 100.7 LPFM at Tarleton State University in Stephenville, TX
I manage two stations at Tarleton State and we have used Tieline’s Report-IT app and iMix G3, Commander and Merlin codecs in the past. Recently we purchased the Tieline Gateway 8 to use for sports and other remote broadcasts on KTRL 90.5 and KXTR 100.7. Some Gateway channels are hooked up to a Logitek console in one studio via a Jetstream Mini, and others are hooked up to the Logitek console in our other studio. Codec outputs are networked across to all three of our Logitek consoles, including a production suite.
KXTR 100.7 is heard in Erath County, TX and KTRL 90.5 covers a large section of North Central Texas and reaches Fort Worth and the outskirts of Waco. Both stations are also streamed online. We selected the Tieline Gateway 8 as it streamlined our setup by using a single codec for remotes on both stations. Tieline’s upgrade path allows us to expand channel capabilities via software upgrades in future as required.
Gateway Replaces Older Hardware
Currently the new Gateway 8 replaces an older Commander codec which is currently being used for remote broadcasts across our campus and community. It also replaces a Tieline Merlin in preparation for the football season here at Tarleton State. We use the Gateway to send live audio back to the station and send station mix-minus audio to the remote site. The Gateway delivers flexibility. We can handle two sports broadcasts on both stations or be doing a remote broadcast on campus on one station, and a sports broadcast on the other.
Tieline is my go-to for remotes. Tieline’s integration with older equipment and being able to use the Report-IT app are major reasons for this. We replaced our iMix G3 with the ViA and our Athletics department has done the same, so we are using Tieline ViAs for all our remotes nowadays. We will use the Commander and iMix G3 that they replaced as a backup STL.
A Seamless Transition
The transition was pretty simple. Like the Gateway, our Logitek console uses RJ45 for the ins and outs. With the Merlin and Commander we had to use RJ45 to XLR adapters, but with the Gateway we can get rid of those and go straight in/out.
The university has a fiber-based IP network and we use AT&T hotspots to connect on-site. Our Athletics team uses AT&T and Verizon. Connections are very reliable in this area, but with sports broadcasts, that can depend on where an away game is located.
Quality and functionality is the best part about broadcasting using IP codecs. When you compare codecs to a cell phone or POTS line the overall quality difference with Tieline is undeniable.
The Pandemic and Remote Control
During the pandemic we worked with a staff of 3, myself and 2 student workers. We actually used Report-IT, along with our Commander and eventually Gateway more than ever before. It was the best way for us to put students on the air. They can download the TieServer Console and Report-IT on their phone and we could put them on the air in a snap.
The Tieline Toolbox Web-GUI for configuration and control is easy to use and very helpful for configuration and control. Tieline’s Cloud Codec Controller is also something we plan to use for remote control of equipment. We have a lot of students and play-by-play announcers doing broadcasts who are not very familiar with the equipment, so being able to control everything remotely would be incredibly useful.
Tieline’s quality is great. It is the best of any other options we have used in the past and we have had nothing but great experiences with Tieline’s technical support. We have had very positive feedback from our engineer and all of the people that use the equipment on a weekly basis. They have been some of the most reliable and best working pieces of equipment we have.
(Gateway Delivers Flexibility for Tarleton State was first published August 2021 in Radio World. )
For more information on Gateway, Gateway 4 and ViA codecs visit www.tieline.com/products or contact Tieline sales: