Arrakis Digilink-HD in WOIE’s Studio A WARSAW, Ind. — I purchased my first Arrakis Systems Digilink automation system back in 1995.
I’ve installed other automation systems over the years, but I always remembered how reliable and user-friendly Digilink was, so in 2002 I decided that for the students broadcasting on WIOE(FM), Digilink Extreme was the way to go. In 2013, WIOE upgraded to Digilink-HD.
WIOE, Oldies 98.3FM is a nonprofit LPFM run by Blessed Beginnings Broadcasting of Warsaw, Ind. We work with the mass communications program of Warsaw Community Schools, so, as you can imagine, WIOE needs a system that is easy to learn, easy-to-operate and reliable.
The reliability and ease of Digilink-HD make broadcasting as much fun as the oldies music we play. When I learned of the Digilink-HD they were developing, I contacted Ben Palmer at Arrakis to learn more. The new system features remind me of other automation systems I worked with, but not as expensive.
Installation was simple. Transition from Extreme to DHD was easy, since all of WIOE’s files were in the correct Arrakis format already. The Digilink Extreme audio and control bridge was removed and the new replacement DHD audio and control bridge installed easily. It was a simple as unplugging the Molex connectors from one Arrakis bridge and plugging into another.
The first thing all of us at WIOE noticed was the sound — unbelievable audio quality. I have had staff and peers in the industry comment favorably about how the “new” Oldies 98.3FM, WIOE sounds.
WIOE has a large programming staff. DHD provides each member with their own customized “Hot Key” page. Everybody on air loves this new DHD feature. Our studio computer monitors are touchscreens and navigating Digilink-HD has proven simple and touchscreen-friendly.
DHD features a new program called DHD Tools. This can be operated on the main Digilink-HD automation computer or on a separate computer inside another WIOE studio. DHD Tools is where the daily schedule is edited, production, including voice tracking is done and WIOE library maintenance performed. Before DHD Tools we had to all “share” studio time to complete needed tasks. Now we can do everything from our office or another WIOE studio, networked together and not having to share studio time.
Remotes such as high school sports broadcasts are a breeze with Digilink-HD. The Game Player feature on Digilink-HD is improved over Extreme. Our high school student sports broadcasters learned the DHD Game Player quickly and without any mistakes on the air, where it counts.
Customer support with Arrakis has been outstanding. Support often consisted of a few emails between the Digilink-HD support team and me. Not even a phone call has been needed six months later.
As with any new automation system or equipment, the WIOE staff had to adjust with DHD. Staff issues are the small font in the Digilink-HD Library area and the removal of the software channel level audio faders. Ben tells me those soft faders will return soon in a software revision. Thank you, Ben!
Overall, I have to say that for the investment you can’t go wrong with Digilink-HD. This is a powerful, feature-packed software and computer package for the money.
For information, contact Ben Palmer at Arrakis Systems in Colorado at (970) 461-0730 or visit www.arrakis-systems.com.