HitRadio FFH, Planet Radio and Harmony.FM renew studios with Lawo Ruby Mixing Consoles
Frankfurt, Germany’s Radio / Tele FFH has just completed an ambitious studio renovation for their HitRadio FFH (ffh.de), Planet Radio (planetradio.de) and Harmony.FM (harmonyfm.de) radio stations using Lawo Ruby mixers, the newest addition to Lawo’s family of radio consoles and virtual mixing products.
FFH has continuously been one of Germany’s most popular private broadcasters since beginning operations in 1989. Their main and backup studios are now equipped with a total of seven Ruby surfaces, each controlling Power Core mixing engines. More Power Cores were used to build a sophisticated, plant-wide router and conference matrix / intercom system.
Jörg Polinski, Head of IT & Broadcasting at Radio / Tele FFH explains: “Our new Lawo system is state-of-the-art technology, extremely flexible and built for 24/7 operation. Our operators can create programming for any channel using any studio, and sharing audio resources, which saves us money on both equipment and staffing. Our audio network is a dual-core redundant matrix which employs two Power Cores for routing — very flexible and very secure. We couldn’t be happier with the results.”
“This was a very ambitious studio project,” says Marc Straehl CEO of SLG Broadcast, which designed and installed the systems in conjunction with integrator Studio Hamburg MCI. “These new Lawo radio products gave us the tools we needed to solve every operational challenge the customer had. They were a perfect fit.”
Ruby is incredibly easy to learn and use, thanks to its logical, uncluttered control layout. The physical mixing surface keeps the controls DJs use most quickly at hand – faders, source selectors, monitor controls – while less-accessed features, like audio shaping and routing selections, are instantly available on context-sensitive multi-touch displays. These screens, built with Lawo VisTool GUI builder software, can also be used to control other studio devices and software, delivering a seamless user experience.
“This is pretty revolutionary,” notes Straehl. “In most studios you see half-a-dozen monitors displaying all the information the operator needs. Not only is it cluttered, it’s distracting. But Ruby enables console controls to integrate with those for playout systems, phone queues, codecs and even social media and streaming video. Goodbye monitors, hello open sightlines!”
“We’ve received significant benefits since the installation of our Lawo system,” says Polinski. “Our editors and presenters benefit from the smooth workflow that results from the mix of hardware and touch-screen operation. This concept decreases errors and increases work efficiency. It also makes the studios very tidy! The technology lives behind the scenes. You don’t see lots of controls everywhere, but you still have the full range of functions you’d get from traditional consoles.”
Ruby can be ordered in sizes from 4 to 60 faders, in desktop or flush-mount styles. Its flexible Power Core engine is equipped with hundreds of AES67 and MADI I/O channels, and can be easily expanded with a range of plug-in cards to accommodate even more digital and analog sources. With 96 DSP channels for dynamic audio shaping, multiple AutoMix groups, and a 1920 x 1920 internal routing matrix, Power Core packs everything you need into a compact 1RU package.