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Tieline Codecs Put on a Show in Louisiana

Bridge-ITs feed Genie Distribution at Festival International de Louisiane

The author explains the Tieline Web GUI to station members.

We all know the past technologies of remote broadcast units. From RPU to telco devices and now IP devices, I’ve always wished for a single device to consolidate audio feeds from various sources.

For the past 18 years, KRVS(FM) has presented a live broadcast of Festival International de Louisiane. It is a five-day, free Francophone world music festival throughout the downtown area of Lafayette, La. I am the chief engineer of KRVS and have been producing the broadcast that entire time. I’ve now expanded the broadcast to three of the five largest stages. The event this year had an attendance of nearly 400,000 visitors.

This year, my vision included setting up a remote broadcast studio at the Lafayette Science Museum in order to have a visible on-site presence as well as being accessible to artists for live interviews and performances. The remote studio needed to receive three IP streams and send out one IP stream back to the main broadcast studio.

Since Lafayette has an entire fiber ring that is provided by Lafayette Utilities System (LUS), I was able to get several optical network terminal (ONT) interfaces installed in temporary locations. From the largest, main stage I setup an RV camper with a Digidesign Profile Venue console with a full audio split from the stage. So we did our own mix that fed AES audio at 44.1 kHz to a Tieline Bridge-IT IP audio codec. Then at the other two stages I used a matrix analog output from the front of house audio console into Tieline Bridge-IT audio codecs.

I tested the bandwidth at each location and my average download speed was 84 Mbps and average upload speed was 87 Mbps. This was more than enough headroom to send fully uncompressed audio. From the remote studio I connected the IP from the fiber ONT to a Ubiquiti Edge gigabit router then I sent one Cat-5e cable to a TP-Link gigabit switch at the audio control point.

The Genie Distribution acted as a receiver of three stereo streams. Using the web GUI interface was by far the most useful of tools. It was simple to set up and I only needed one call to Tieline for confirmation, which took all of one minute. I ran the system for four days, for 32 hours of audio with zero dropouts and zero packet loss. Of course, being completely on fiber and the same subnet made life easier for this broadcast.

I cannot express enough of how satisfied I was with the performance and reliability of the Tieline gear. It made the setup and implementation quick and easy.

At the end of each night of broadcasting I would leave the remote studio (Genie Distribution and Bridge-IT Pro) powered up. Each local stage would power down each evening and upon power up the next day the Bridge-IT codecs would automatically reconnect. It was so convenient to verify and monitor connectivity and levels from one location that it made my job feel too easy.

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