BUDAPEST — Nowadays price is an increasingly important factor in the FM transmitter market and it can be a challenge to find a suitably affordable system that offers the quality and reliability, as well as the remote control features that we need. I believe that we have found a good solution with the compact Ecreso FM transmitter range.
At Antenna Hungária, we operate a nationwide network of more than 150 FM radio transmitters broadcasting five national and several local radio programs. So we have considerable experience in testing and selecting new equipment. As an operations engineer, I participate in the procurement of radio transmitters but I also support the day-to-day operation of our FM radio network; I have a vested interest in the decisions because I will be working with the equipment on a regular basis.
Over the last few years, we have added smaller sites to our network and therefore needed to source some lower-power (up to 2 kW) FM transmitters for these locations. Many of these sites are unmanned, thus it was essential to have a high level of redundancy as well as remote control and monitoring capabilities on the systems selected.
We were persuaded to go with the compact Ecreso FM system chiefly because of the transmission quality, which was guaranteed by a digital FM modulator. The built-in protection limiter was a major plus as we operate an MPEG program distribution chain.
The Ecreso FM systems offered nice remote control and monitoring features via SNMP and the useful Advanced Metering Interface. Specifically helpful in times of troubleshooting, the AMI offers a comprehensive overview of the transmitter’s status, which allows us to check the parameters of the whole system from the inputs to the transmitted signal.
In order to maximize the redundancy available on these remote sites, we opted for 1+1 reserve systems on the majority of our five Ecreso sites. Most of these units were installed in 2016 but we do have Ecreso FM transmitters that have been in our service since 2013 and remain happy with their operation.
We have our own service team at Antenna Hungária so we usually install the transmitters ourselves. To do this successfully, it is important for us to count on good support from the manufacturer and easy-to-use user manuals. If we have questions or problems, we need to get useful answers quickly.
With the Ecreso FM transmitters the installation process was easy and problem-free. When a minor issue arose, it was dealt with quickly by the WorldCast support team.
Likewise, when the FM limiter function in the first FM transmitters we ordered from WorldCast Systems didn’t operate as we required, we fed this info back to the team and we were issued with a new version of firmware which met our needs exactly. It is currently the only built-in FM limiter which we accept in our network.
In addition, the Ecreso FM transmitters were available at a reasonable price. It’s nice to know that we do not need to choose between affordability and reliability — the Ecreso compact systems offered us both.
Although we don’t have much long-term experience with Ecreso transmitters, the experience of the past few years leads us to believe that we have made a good decision in choosing this equipment.
Overall, I can say we are very satisfied. We have had no hardware issues and have found the software stable. The transmitters themselves offer good audio quality, comprehensive remote control and monitoring capability and we have had good support and response from WorldCast Systems.
For information, contact Tony Peterle at WorldCast Systems in Florida at
(305) 249-3110 or visit www.worldcastsystems.com.