Alabama Broadcast Services – News and Updates


Arrakis MARC-15-15 Console For Sale

Arrakis MARC-15-15 (fully populated 15-channel, 3 output buss) console for sale. I just finished spending several hours going through all the inputs and outputs, checking everything from levels, THD+N percentages, button functions and lights in all the buttons, meter functions, etc. and it’s in excellent working condition. Price is $3,000 firm, but that’s less than half the price of purchasing it new, and this one is in great working shape, ready to be put to good use in someone’s station or studio.

If interested, I can be reached by telephone at (three-three-four) four-four-four-six-seven-nine-six, or via email at dan(at-sign)

The MARC-15 is still being built, sold, and supported by Arrakis. This would make a great console for a new studio, or a great replacement/upgrade for existing studios, and is even priced affordable enough to serve as a spare/backup console or source of parts for a station/studio already utilizing one of the MARC series consoles from Arrakis (replacement modules run $500 or so a piece, and this one is fully populated as follows:

  • (4) Mic input modules (each A/B switchable, for a total of up to 8 mics) and each input has jumper-selectable 48V Phantom Power
  • (10) Stereo input modules (each A/B switchable, for a total of up to 20 stereo input sources
  • (1) Telephone hybrid interface module, which even features built in mix-minus on the busses.

The console has three outputs (Program, Audition, and Utility) with each buss having both stereo and mono-mix outputs. It also sports a host of other features, including logic, studio talk-back capabilities, automatic control room speaker muting (jumper selectable), and much more.

Installation is a breeze, since input and output connections on the console are done via RJ45 connections (no fooling around with Molex-type connectors and pins.)

Arrakis offers a host of options for this console as well, including (but not limited to):

  • MARC-USB Module with built-in soundcard, for interfacing with and controlling third-party software to facilitate “live assist” and/or recording from the console to the PC for production work.
  • A second hybrid interface module, facilitating two phone interfaces simultaneously, and the callers can even hear one another
  • Freely downloadable software for “live assist” and other functions using the optional MARC-USB console to PC interface module
  • AoIP units which easily connect to the MARC-15

More info and details on this powerful console are available on the Arrakis website at:—marc-15.html

Meanwhile, here are a few more photos of the console, including a picture taken while I was using my NTI precision audio test equipment to go through all the inputs and outputs:

This console probably won’t be sitting around long, so contact me soon if interested.

Have a great day!

Dan Gunter, CBT

Owner/Broadcast Engineer

Alabama Broadcast Services, LLC


  • Alabama Broadcasters Association
  • Georgia Association of Broadcasters
  • Society of Broadcast Engineers

When Engineers and Riggers Neglect the Little Things

Sometimes the “little things” aren’t really so minor. Here’s a good example of a serious problem (and not a cheap repair job) which I responded to for a station which went off the air late on a Friday evening while they had a major live promotion scheduled for Saturday morning. The previous engineer had installed a microwave STL antenna about 230-240′ up on this tower with 7/8″ corrugated coaxial feedline. Problem #1 was that he neglected to go back and install the snap-in hangers to secure the feedline to the tower as he’d promised the station’s owner. The only thing supporting the entire weight of the vertical feedline run was the female N-connector on the end of the antenna’s pigtail. He had also failed to install a single coax grounding kit, which there should have been at least three of, along with a PolyPhaser lightning arrestor at the point where the feedline enters the transmitter building.

It was just a matter of time before one of two things happened first: breakage and collapse of the feedline, or a lightning hit to the STL receiver. First across the finish line was the former. Not only did the feedline break apart and fall — it managed to wrap itself around a tower guy wire (not just once, but twice.)

If you’ve ever tried to round up a tower crew for an emergency service call, you already know what an adventure that can be in and of itself. But let it be late on a Friday and you’ve got yourself a genuine exercise in frustration. While I was on the way to the site (about 120 miles away) the station owner had managed to find a tower crew, which only took him calling six different tower rigging crews before one answered and said they’d be on their way (from about three hours away.)

After a hot, sticky, overnight marathon of tower work in the dark, we got the STL working and the station on the air again with a temporary, emergency fix at around 2 a.m. Saturday. We will be scheduling a full workday to completely reinstall the entire STL antenna and feedline system, which will be done using all the correct hardware and lightning protection.

Moral of this story: it definitely pays to contract an engineer and tower rigging crew who all pay attention to details and insist on doing the job right the first time. Doing so helps prevent needless loss of advertising revenue, lost sleep, and hits to the station’s reputation.