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Sunday, January 15, 2006


FMeXtra vs HD Radio-Comments

Independent comments from broadcast engineers comparing the two FM digital systems.

"> > Thats a cool system, it seems much more superior to IBOC. > > Why havent we heard more about it? > > Because our pals at Ibiquity wouldn't be able to charge > their superior licensing fees for their inferior product > they are sticking us with... > At least with the whole HD-2 thing we might gain enough > extra revenue to recover all the fees someday... Maybe. Thats just it. FMeXtra is superior in several ways to HD. First off, the Codecs sound much better. Why can't iBiquity get it right. How come the FM codec doesn't sound much better than the AM codec. FMeXtra managed to squeeze two really good sounding stereo streams in the subcarrier band. Even TieLine Technology http://www.tieline.com/ was able to develop a codec that gives you quality stereo audio over a POTS Dialup connection! Where has (or why has) iBiquity gone wrong? Secondly, all the radio station has to do is buy the FMeXtra encoder/generator. Once you have it, you got it. Plug it in, configure it, and you're done, its on the air. With HD, stations need to spend money on combiners or additional antennas. Thirdly, There is the annual licensing fee for HD. There are no fees with FMeXtra. Fourthly, there is no issue of adjacent channel interference from FMeXtra as it uses the existing subcarrier part of the channel, and not the sidebands. Drawbacks: You need to keep the Analog Modulation in check. No more overmodulating. Also the range doesn'treach quite as far as the usable main channel Analog signal. This however is no different with the current HD system. Other Perks: FMeXtra is fully compatible with HD, so a station could use both at the same time if they wanted. The system supports ancillary data as well. It can also be configured to allow for use of RDS. So why haven't we heard more about it? The problem is that it is a superior system that would allow the little independant and college/community stations to remain on a level playing field with the big corporate broadcasters. FMeXtra is developed by DREinc which itself is a small private company. iBiquity is a conglomeration supported by all the big corporate broadcasters and then some. There is too much invested in iBiquity's system to let some little independant guy come along and steal their corporate thunder. By advocating a system that requires major technical upgrades, expensive equipment, and "superior licensing fees" they basically edge out the little broadcasters who can't aford it, thus allowing more room for big bucks corporate radio. Tell everyone you know about DREinc and FMeXtra! "

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