Digital Alert Systems (DAS), a division of Monroe Electronics, announced that it will feature the new Digital Alert Systems Audio Management System (DAS AMS) at the 2015 NAB Show in booth N4816.
The DAS AMS incorporates the new DAS Audio Message Controller (AMC) and the company’s award-winning MultiPlayer audio playerand program switcher, tightly integrated in a new solution that supports message aggregation, text-to-speech (TTS) functionality, and proper message audio on both main and SAP audio streams in full compliance with the 21st Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act (CVAA) rules.
"Simply put, our DAS AMS is by far the most effective solution for addressing the FCC requirements stemming from the 21st Century CVAA," said Bill Robertson, vice president of business development at DAS. "By leveraging functionality from our acclaimed MultiPlayer solution along with innovative software tools from our DASDEC EAS systems, we’ve crafted the DAS AMS into a powerful and economical means to aggregate emergency information and provide audio playout, switching, and signaling on multiple channels. We’ve also made it simple, enabling users to manage compliance with just one system rather than using a variety of boxes."
Taking advantage of key capabilities from DAS’ industry-leading DASDEC system, the DAS AMS offers broadcasters an innovative yet straightforward solution for assuring CVAA compliance. The new FCC requirements governing emergency message audio will apply to all televisions stations providing emergency information that is not part of a newscast or Emergency Alert Systems (EAS) message.
Under the rules, television stations must provide audio description in the secondary audio program (SAP) channel that corresponds to any "emergency information" appearing on the main channel. Any crawls or text displays on the main channel — information such as weather alerts and school closings — that are not actual newscasts or EAS alerts must be "voiced" on the SAP channel. Broadcasters also must insert an "attention" signal or tone on the main channel to indicate that emergency audio is available on the secondary channel. Easy to configure, operate, and modify, the DAS AMS addresses all of these aspects of compliance including comprehensive logging and reporting.
Unlike single-point solutions that handle just one type of emergency information, the DAS AMS aggregates information from a variety of sources, converts the text information to audio using a high-quality TTS converter, prepares it for playback on the different audio channels, and then — via a Web-based user interface — provides audio and triggering signals on all configured channels.
The system supports multiple channels of AES and/or analog audio switching and playback, and it offers three playback modes: manual, automatic, and triggered playback. Because the TTS lexicon is customizable, broadcasters can adapt it to ensure accurate "pronunciation" of difficult or colloquial location names or phrases.
The DAS AMS will be available at a price of $4,495, complete with one TTS voice. In the future, DAS will make additional voices available for addition to the system at a nominal cost.