Wednesday, 12 March 2008

The first steps towards E25 automation are always difficult...

We were glad to hear again a YL behind the microphones of E25, during live transmissions, some time ago. Now the operators seems to start using an automated system for message broadcast, using voice samples from a YL.

Specifically, they recorded the YL saying each number, 0-9, "Rebeat", "EOM EOT" and use some sort of machine to convert text-to-voice samples. It is interesting that they have separate ending numbers, like E10 and some more Enigmas who wants to have a more realistic voice. A nice touch, but the whole project seems to be problematic.

Listen what happened yesterday, Tuesday 11 March on 6140 USB at 1028z. The usual hum, but then, some more noise and a staggering mecha voice with a strange noise after each gap. The transmission ended abruptly at 1033z so they replayed it a few moments later.

The same problems occurred in the next transmission at 1113z, again on 6140 USB, as you can hear here! Again the TX starts with some hum noise, then again YL's voice is broken.

Things were better on 9450, where 2 YL mecha transmissions occurred. Both of them were "control" messages. This one recorded at 1213z, and the next one at 1243z. Note that my tuner was set in USB mode.

Any ideas regarding the failures? What about the noises? I wonder what kind of system they use (mechanical/analog or a PC playing the samples)...

Ahh! I forgot to mention that a typical live transmission happened at 1044z, featuring an OM, sending a message to 128 (initially read as "182" another reversal!) and the "control" message "4" to 126.

Today I managed to forget connecting my antenna to the RX and set my PC record 6 hours of nothing... It is a good precaution to unhook your antenna when a storm is coming but you must remember to hook it back again :-) So I'm waiting your logs for today!


Lcdut said...

Fascinating. I suspect the OM doesn't want to be out of the job and has sabotaged the new system...

Are you sure it's an automated system? There are a variety of different 'ones' and 'fours' - and near the middle you can hear two 'threes' in succession that sound different. It may be they have set a different intonation for the end of each group (surprisingly many stations do this - e.g. not just E3 but E10 too), but that seems a bit advanced for a first system.


lcdut said...

I stand corrected. I recorded this on Saturday:

(first catch of E25 with my new Degen!)

It probably is an automated system. And they probably did use different end numbers like E3 and E10. How very ambitious!

Curiously after 'EOT, EOM' you can hear another '2'! Mistake?