KENAI, Alaska — The KSRM radio group, KSRM(AM), KSLD(AM), KFSE(FM), KKIS(FM) and KWHQ (FM), delivers programming on five stations and has served Alaska’s Kenai Peninsula since 1967.
Located 140 road miles south of Anchorage, KSRM sits between Kenai and Soldotna and covers an audience of around 40,000 people. The flagship station, KSRM/920AM, has been broadcasting news/talk format for over 40 years. It is especially popular during morning drive when it pulls in its largest listening figures.
A great-sounding radio station will keep listeners coming back. If the audio is fatiguing people won’t like what they hear. This often is due to the loudness war. You try to be louder than the competitor, but quality suffers when you push the processor past its limits in the quest for more loudness. You could have superior content, but if the audio quality is poor, people will turn it off.
In Alaska, we have the disadvantage of being a sparsely populated state. So, KSRM did not want to spend $7,000 on an AM audio processor. As I searched for a lower cost solution, Doug Tharp with SCMS recommended I try the BW Broadcast DSPX-AM. At $2,495 the price was right. However, I wasn’t sure about the quality so SCMS provided a 30-day try-before-buy. I had 30 days to return it for credit or send in our payment for the processor. I decided to give it a try.
I found the DSPX-AM easy to set up. It was clear that BW Broadcast had spent lots of time building the factory presets. In fact, I ended up choosing a rock preset to get the desired high-energy sound. With built-in sine and square wave generator, set up was fast. I tweaked the sound a little and was impressed with the difference. I then decided to go to the car and give it a listen. With the remote control software I could make changes from the parking lot. It didn’t take long for staff to take notice. The GM was pleased with the sound. The DSPX-AM produces a clean, crisp and punchy sound that stands out.
I found the DSPX-AM has a formidable feature set for any processor, at any price. DSPX-AM offers four-band limiting and a four-band window-gated AGC processor. The three-band lookahead path allows the simultaneous full 20 kHz digital radio processing. Of course, we use the asymmetrical clipping to optimize the sound for voice. Add this to the Tilt Equalization and we have a bright and energized sound unmatched in this market. It has a real-time clock for preset scheduling. The DSPX-AM offers dual processing paths if we ever decide to do HD.
We sent our payment to SCMS. We are pleased with the sound we’ve achieved and the ease to do it. So I’d recommend the DSPX-AM to anyone in any size market. I’ve used processors that cost much more and have not been able to get these results. I can’t wait to try the BW Broadcast DSPX-FM on my next project.
For information, contact BW Broadcast at (866) 376-1612 or visit www.bwbroadcast.com.