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The Radio Suite Hard Drive


The first Linux-based digital hard disk storage system for consistent and reliable "On Air" presentation.

Linux Logo

From On Air Digital comes a fresh new approach to hard drive-based digital audio storage: The RadioSuite System.


The RadioSuite System is a series of applications specifically designed with a high level of integration to deliver your on air signal without compromise to either reliability, functionality or audio quality. The RadioSuite System is centered on a rock solid Linux on air application yet integrates flawlessly with the Windows‚ applications used around the rest of the facility.

What is Linux?

Linux is the open source platform based on Unix. Linux is the fastest-growing operating system in the world. One of the reasons for its growing popularity is its well-documented reputation for reliability.

Because it is an open-source program, literally thousands of programmers contribute to its development. Linux is extremely efficient and almost impossible to crash. Linux is literally free and includes networking.

Why Linux?

Reliability, efficiency and marketability are the main reasons we opted to build upon the Linux OS. The unique "Open-Source" philosophy of Linux allows us to have unparalleled access to system functions (we can even get into the OS source code). When your goal is to have as reliable a product as possible, you need access to everything. With Linux, that is what we have.

Beyond the benefits of "Open-Source" we also wanted a unit that could take advantage of off-the-shelf hardware, especially sound cards. That meant having a system that could decode several streams of MPEG audio without choking. Linux allows us to use only what is needed, nothing more. This results in CPU resource figures, while playing multiple (4 stereo), 320 kbps MPEG files, that are comparable to those of a Windows‚ machine just running Windows“ and nothing more. This efficiency has a direct correlation to the reliability of the product. Up times with the RadioSuite HD have already been measured in years, not days, weeks or even months, no refreshing or rebooting.

While reliability and efficiency are admirable ideals, they don't mean a thing if you can't get people to buy it. We are obviously not the first to market a system using a "non-standard" OS, others have come and gone because they either failed to integrate with other operating systems used in the facility or the OS just never took off or progressed in development. Linux is neither. It integrates flawlessly with just about every OS on the market and with the marketing done by Linux providers and even hardware providers Linux has become the fastest growing OS on the market today. Linux is here to stay.

Will Linux require special hardware?

No. Linux is an operating system designed to run on the PC. Linux supports an ever-increasing variety of sound cards, from simple consumer cards to professional quality cards.

Will Linux integrate with your existing applications?

Absolutely, not only can you integrate your traffic, billing and music scheduling but also virtually any Windows application that can produce a WAV or MPEG layer 2/3/3 vbr file can be integrated into the Linux system. This means that instead of paying several thousand for a production system you can spend a couple hundred or even less. $1,000 CD rippers are a thing of the past, download one off the internet or go to your local computer store and pay less than $50 for a ripper that will not only rip to WAV but MPEG Layer 3.

What audio file formats are supported?

The RadioSuite System supports all WAV, MPEG layer 2/3/3 vbr files regardless of which sound card you are using. All MPEG decoding is done in the software allowing the use of inexpensive but high quality consumer sound cards. If you wish to have a professional card, they are available as well. File formats can be mixed with no conflicts.

What about price?

The RadioSuite System is designed to be a high value package. Full systems including production room software are comparable in price to single workstation prices from some of our competitors. On Air Digital has developed some special packages including build your own that can help keep a handle on your capital expenses. In addition, the Linux OS carries an unlimited number of network client users, no network licensing fees every time you add a user.

What about service and support?

The best in the business - just ask our clients. Our philosophy is to make products that are as robust as is humanly possible, so that our customers can be productive and profitable, without having to spend time on the phone with customer support. We feel that if you invest the time in creating robust, easy-to-use software, then you don't need dozens of employees and training schools to support the software. This has the additional benefit of keeping our overhead down, which of course affects the price you pay.

If you do need service and support, it is there, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Service and support contracts are available at some of the lowest prices in the industry.

What about the future?

Obviously the RadioSuite System is a system in evolution. The reliability, power and functionality of the legacy Ultimate Digital Studio II (UDS II) has allowed us to move ahead with our product development in steps. This has allowed us to concentrate first on the design of the Linux media engine itself. Not only it's storage and audio capabilities but it's various forms of communication, error reporting and other reliability related areas, all of which will play a major role in the RadioSuite System's future development.

Recently our parent company, Smarts Broadcast Systems made a press release regarding the development of a media storage box. That box is a variation of the Linux-based RadioSuite HD and a major step in the future integration of the two product lines. Smarts has committed itself to the Linux OS for the same reason we did, they needed something as reliable as their legacy DOS product.

All systems being sold today are being sold with hardware that will be part of those future systems. As long as service contracts are maintained you will continue to get the upgrades that will eventually take you well into the future without taking you to the bank.

How Do I Find Out More?

We thought you would never ask!

You can download a set of literature covering the various applications and the future of the RadioSuite System.

Call 800-747-6278 and press 1 for our "info" department, fax us at 972-481-9499, or drop us an e-mail to info@onairusa.com. You can even drop by our offices, if you follow the maps on our Contact Us page. We'll keep you posted about the best thing to happen to digital on-air storage systems in years.