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Thread: Calculate call sign from PI code

  1. #11
    Join Date
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    Currently DXing In Colbert And Lauderdale Counties In AL, And Alcorn And Tishomingo Counties In MS.
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    "You may also encounter repeaters converting one of the digital subchannels of an FM station to analog mode on a different frequency. I haven't run into any of these running RDS but if it did, it would most likely show a legitimate set of call letters on the "wrong" frequency."

    W293AH(106.5 KISS FM) in Huntsville, AL is a good example of this. W293AH is a translator with a HD parent station, WQRV HD 2, and uses RDS. The 7 character space displays KISS-FM. Strangely when I picked up the RDS call letters it said WLRH, which is the calls of another Huntsville station on 89.3. I don't know if this is a glitch or not, but perhaps this is another I Heart RDS screw up.

  2. #12
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    The iHeart thing is intentional, again for some reason their traffic data system requires it.

    The PI codes we're talking about here are not ordinarily displayed on receivers. They exist mostly so the Alternate Frequency thing works -- so that a radio knows which signals are carrying the same program. (looking at the Wisconsin example, where a Wisconsin Public Radio station transmits 89.3 as an alternate frequency... you want your receiver to also check the PI code to be sure the signal on 89.3 actually is a WPR signal. There are 89.3 signals in Wisconsin that carry something else.) The PI code<=>callsign mapping is just a way of guaranteeing we don't have duplicate PI codes in the same service area. (unless they simulcast)

    An ordinary receiver displays the PS field. This is the station name, as it wants the audience to know it. It would be nice if it were always the call letters, but there's nothing enforcing that.

    I suppose W293AH bought their RDS encoder from WLRH & never reprogrammed the PI code. It's a bit of a challenge for one of the HD sub translators. There is no way to map a translator call to a PI code -- there is no code that corresponds to W293AH. They could use the code for the primary station WQRV -- but if WQRV's main signal also uses RDS you'd have two WQRVs with different programming. In the particular case I suppose you could use KISS but most station slogans aren't valid callsigns.
    Doug Smith W9WI
    Pleasant View, TN EM66
    http://www.w9wi.com

  3. #13
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    I don't think they bought they encoder from WLRH because WLRH also currently has active RDS. I wonder if my radio perhaps displayed the WLRH calls because they weren't transmitting anything in the field(would it even be possible not to transmit calls but to transmit text?)? At the time I was doing a scan of the dial but several Huntsville stations have RDS so why would the radio select the WLRH calls? Yes, WQRV also has RDS so it would seem silly to transmit their call letters(that said transmitting the WLRH calls is sillier). Transmitting KISS actually seems like a good idea in their case but that is just my opinion. Here are pictures of both the WLRH and the W293AH RDS texts from Alabama Broadcast Media Page if anyone is interested:

    WLRH: http://www.almediapage.info/images/abmp/rds-wlrh.jpg.

    W293AH: http://www.almediapage.info/images/abmp/rds-w293ah.jpg.

  4. #14
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    I note WLRH broadcasts in HD digital. The HD encoders include a RDS encoder. Which means if WLRH had RDS before they went HD... they have a RDS encoder they no longer need. Or, *had* a RDS encoder they no longer need RDS encoders are not horribly expensive. (a quick Google showed reputable brands selling for $900-$1,500)

    The photos -- what brand/model radio is that?
    Doug Smith W9WI
    Pleasant View, TN EM66
    http://www.w9wi.com

  5. #15
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    Dec 2016
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    Ha! I read your message (2 back) and I was thinking to myself, "Oh I like that idea better. And I should be able to pull the data directly with python too!"
    Then you posted your follow up doing exactly that. Nice thought!

    I like the idea of using the tower coordinates over the municipality of the station, not only because of your points, but it also doesn't require any additional calls out, and can be compared offline easily.

  6. #16
    Join Date
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    Currently DXing In Colbert And Lauderdale Counties In AL, And Alcorn And Tishomingo Counties In MS.
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    That is an Insignia NS-HD01A HD Radio Walkman. It picks up HD signals better than the Tabletop model I have, though the tabletop model seems to pick up regular FM signals better than the Walkman.

  7. #17
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    Dec 2016
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    Hey Everyone,

    Thanks for the help with the call letters. Here is the "finished" product:

    https://youtu.be/wnxt209hBjU

    (I never really finish anything - Because I always have an idea how to make it better - I'm sure you can relate)

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