The Affordable Satellite Alternative
What’s the problem? Long term stability is next-to-impossible on a Windows OS. The Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) is high, even more-so with redundancy.
Most encoders for broadcasting streaming audio are applications that run on the Windows environment. This makes sense, because of the evolution of the PC and computer hardware used in Broadcast. In the beginning Windows XP systems dominated the landscape. Jump ahead 20 years and today the OS has changed to Windows 7/10 but, largely, software for the studio is still ran on Windows --sometimes Apple OS. This means OS management is critical to maintaining the up-time of the encoder.
Even hardware-based solutions often run Microsoft OS under the hood. There is very little use of Linux based OS, largely due to a lack of driver support, and familiarity with the OS by developers, and adoption by the users. Therefore up-time is often the result of the ability to manage the Windows OS, live through the windows update schedule, and maintain the encoders clean and healthy operation.
The Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) for these types of systems includes human power to manage the as well as the capital costs of the hardware and OS. Power costs for a complete computer are also relatively high.
Is there a better way?
Yes there is. Hardware-based encoders that are cheap, stable, and easy to manage. Barix offers a line of encoders called Instreamers, https://www.barix.com/products/instreamer-family/. These encoders cost $379 to purchase. There is no need to manage windows, the boxes just work.
The solution is to take uncompressed PCM (wav) audio and metadata into the Instreamer. This is a pre-stream, and the uncompressed source is streamed to the cloud, where any number of encodes and bitrates can be produced. In the cloud there is more resources available at more flexible rates than on-premise. There is also almost unlimited modularity and variety of encoders that can be used.
In short, the solution is simple: Send (1) uncompressed source signal, (1400kbps bitrate) AND metadata and StreamGuys provides the output bitrates as a managed service. For hands on access to the encoder we provide remote management from anywhere on the internet. Gone on vacation or not able to access the internet? That’s A OK, we also offer operational coverage to manage encoding for you with SG 24/7 support.
Quickly and easily setup a unidirectional STL (studio transmitter link). Avoid all the tedious business of having to configure IP networks, punch holes in firewalls, or negotiate with your network administrator or ISP's tech support department.
The Reflector Service is reliable because it's simple. With Reflector Service, you set it up once and forget about it. In addition, Barix's sturdy Instreamers and Exstreamers are known for their durability.
Reflector can save you money, as internet connections are cheaper than satellite. With the Reflector service, you don't need a 'Static IP address' (a way that your ISP has for charging you more money for your internet services). Sure, you pay for the Reflector service...but a lot less.
Whether you’re syndicating national radio shows or simply connecting your studio and broadcast tower, Reflector has you covered. Contact us to find if Reflector is right for your project.
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