Thursday, March 12, 2009

WMFO to complete major technical renovation

This is exciting news from the station where I got my first start in radio more than 16 years ago! Congratulations to them!! From the inbox:
WMFO, Tufts Freeform Radio, is proud to announce that the station will be undergoing a major technical upgrade during the upcoming week of spring break. This upgrade has been made possible through a large grant approved by the Tufts Community Union Senate this past February. The upgrade will convert the station's current analog audio system, installed in the late 1970s, to a state-of-the-art digital audio system. In order to complete this renovation, the station will power down at noon on Saturday, March 14 with plans to resume normal programming a week later at noon on Sunday, March 22.
WMFO broadcasts on 91.5FM and online at WMFO is a community radio station located in Curtis Hall on the Medford campus of Tufts University. The station is completely student managed and broadcasts shows hosted by both student and community member DJs. Currently the station is host to about 200 DJs, whose shows cover a wide variety of both talk and music.
WMFO applied for the granted funds as part of the Student Activities Recovered Funds application process. These funds were initially provided to the TCU Senate as part of the settlement following the embezzlement scandal involving two former Tufts administrators who were accused of stealing almost $1 million from the accounts of various student groups in 2007. Of the total amount of the settlement, about $87,000 has been made available by the Senate to student groups for the purpose of funding projects that would otherwise go unfunded. WMFO applied for and received about $32,000 of these funds. This amount, supplemented by about $4,000 from WMFO's annual budget, will be used to complete the upgrade project.
The bulk of the upgrade consists of installing a new audio transport system in the station. This system controls the flow of audio around the station and serves as the heart of the radio station's broadcast audio capabilities. The new system uses Ethernet technology, identical to that used in home networking and VoIP applications, to move audio from spot to spot around the station. DJs can control this flow from a new digital control board in the primary studio. After completing a competitive bidding process, Axia Audio ( was selected as the provider of the new equipment.
The upgrade will also consist of installing a new computer system in the station that will allow CDs and other digital files to be accessed directly from a primary computer terminal. This will replace the current system under which DJs have to search for music in a physical CD library. These computers will also include a broadcast automation system which will ensure that WMFO remains on the air 24/7.
The new systems, will put WMFO's technological capabilities on par with, or exceeding, those of many professional radio stations and will allow the station to continue to operate reliably for the next 10-15 years. The system also sets the station up for future upgrades such as remote broadcasting capabilities and the transition to Digital FM.
The upgrade project will be completed by a number of WMFO student DJs and community member volunteers who will be staying at Tufts over spring break. Upon completion, WMFO will return to the airwaves at 91.5FM and streaming online at

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