Small Scale – Digital Audio Broadcasting (SS-DAB or SSDAB) or ‘mini mux’ as we like to call it, will soon become a reality in the UK, with Ofcom finalising the framework and advertising licenses in 2020.
It’s DAB, but not as you know it
Well that’s not strictly true, technically it IS DAB as you know it, but the licensing framework is very different. Ofcom are aiming for each SS-DAB service to have a coverage area of around 200,000 population. This brings the digital radio platform within reach of community radio stations, ‘internet only’ radio stations and any station that would like to broaden their coverage area.
A couple of East Dorset examples for you – in Bournemouth, HopeFM broadcasts predominantly to Bournemouth. They may wish to broadcast on the proposed “Poole, Purbeck & Wimborne” SS-DAB Multiplex to increase their coverage in the areas covered. Hot Radio broadcast predominantly to the Poole area, they may wish to enhance their coverage by broadcasting on the proposed “Bournemouth & Boscombe” SS-DAB Multiplex.
An important factor of operating on any DAB platform is cost. SS-DAB is designed to be low cost, both for the Multiplex / SS-DAB operator, and for the stations that broadcast on it. WideFM have developed a platform that Virtualizes some of the building blocks in the SS-DAB transmission chain and we are working with manufactures of audio and transmission equipment to build a reliable and cost effective SS-DAB platform.
A key part of the SS-DAB operation is connectivity, both between the
Multiplexer (usually in a data center and gathers the various audio streams and combines them into one stream for transmission) and transmission site (where the actual modulator and antenna are located) and between the content providers (EG radio station) and the multiplexer
WideFM also is well placed to design and build connectivity solutions for SS-DAB we have invested in our own Data Center, and IP network using fibre and microwave technology which we already use to transport audio nationally for our FM radio customers and locally for our Juice Broadband customers.
If your station or group are interested in broadcasting on the south coast on a SS-DAB multiplex or even operating your own, please get in touch.
We will be providing solutions from turn key transmission (you bring the audio / content, we’ll do the rest) to supplying the individual blocks of the transmission chain, whether that’s physical items such as filters, modulators, virtual items, such as software multiplex creation using our virtual platform in our data centers, or connectivity to your transmission site, and from your content providers.
Interested in hearing more? Please get in touch, 01202 332331.