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Best Practices

HD Radio™ Operational Parameters

To ensure that your station is offering the best possible experience to HD Radio listeners, iBiquity Digital recommends that these technical parameters be followed.

Time Alignment

  • Delay the analog audio to compensate for the delays in the digital audio using the HD Radio exciter or an outboard delay unit. Failure to do this will result in listeners hearing an approximate 8 second shift in audio when receivers blend between analog and digital. 
  • Verify that the phases of the analog and digital signals are the same. If the phases are not the same, listeners may experience pronounced “dips” during blends. Some audio processors and exciter software versions allow you to correct phase inversions.

Audio Level Alignment and Audio Processor Setup

  • Adjust the digital audio so it is the same level as the analog audio. Failure to do this will result in listeners hearing a jump in audio level when blending between the analog and digital signals.

Station Information Service (SIS) 

  • The Short Name SIS field in the Exciter/Exporter should be populated with your station call letters from the factory. The Long Name field can be used for station slogans or the corporation name, etc. and can be accessed through the exciter GUI (Graphic User Interface).

Program Service Data (PSD, formally PAD, Program Associated Data)

  • The PSD consists of a number of different fields which are displayed on the HD Radio receiver such as Song Title, Program Title, Artist name, Album name or Music Genre. These fields are populated by interfacing your studio automation system. A growing number of studio automation system providers have integrated the necessary software into their products.
  • If you do not have a hard drive / automation system, you can manually enter a station slogan or other promotional text into your exciter/exporter (Static PSD). The Title and Artist fields can be found through your exciter GUI under the Station Info section. A new feature is now available to the consumer which requires the station to only use the Title field for a static slogan, website, etc. See the next page for more info and for detailed instructions on entering ‘Static’ PSD on the MPS channel.
  • PSD data can be sent up to the transmitter site via STL, DSL or other network paths.

Multicasting / HD2/HD3 (SPS)

  • An importer is needed for multicasting a second and third channel. The importer can be located at the studio site or the transmitter site. Because of the many different configurations for setting up the multicasting hardware, your equipment vendor should be contacted to determine your individual needs.
  • Audio levels should be the same for the multicast channels as it is for the MPS (Main Program Service). 
  • Title and Artist information (PSD) can be sent using the same methods that are used for the MPS.

PSD Implementation  

  • As many of you know, iTunes® Tagging has become a popular feature in many of the new HD Radio receivers recently released in the marketplace. To enable the consumer to realize a positive tagging experience, we are suggesting that all HD Radio stations adopt the following best practices when setting up their stations with Dynamic or Static PSD. 
  • Whenever possible, actual Song Title and Artist should be displayed in the appropriate PSD fields. This condition is referred to as Dynamic PSD use. 
  • If Dynamic PSD is not available, the station should populate ONLY the Song Title field with a short station slogan or other message. In this condition, PSD Artist field should not be populated. This will help avoid a possible poor consumer experience with tagging features. Please remember that the Title field has a maximum of 124 characters / spaces.
  • If Dynamic PSD is employed and a station elects to intersperse slogans, advertisements or other text in the PSD fields, the added text should be sent for less than 10 seconds at a time, and should not be repeated before resending the dynamic PSD Title and Artist information.
  • These guidelines apply to multicast channels as well as the main program service.


Instructions for Entering MPS ‘Static PSD’

B.E., Continental and Nautel 2.4.2 IRSS software load

From the Exciter GUI: 

  1. Press the STATION button 
  2. Press the STATION DEFAULT PSD button 
  3. Enter text in the Title and Artist windows using an external keyboard or the virtual keyboard. 
  4. Press UPDATE at the bottom of the screen 
  5. Then OK in the next window
  6. Then SEND in the next window
  7. Then OK
  8. Then Cancel to back out of the window and back to a normal GUI screen.

Harris 2.4.2 IRSS software load

From the Exciter GUI: 

  1. Press SYSTEM button
  2. Then press the SYSTEM SETUP
  3. Then press the STATION ID / PSD button
  4. Enter text in the fields on the bottom right of the GUI either by using an external keyboard or the virtual keyboard (by double clicking in the text fields). 
  5. When you have completed all fields, press the ENTER button in the virtual keyboard window by double clicking in any of the text fields.

For additional information click here.

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