The Bass Too Dark
Over the years, Party Vibe Radio has become one of the most popular specialist dance music online stations - one reason being that we specialize in programs with whole mixed sets of music, rather than computer programs playing out stacks of named tunes to try and sell them. Nor are we tied to any one music or promotions company - though we have no objection to DJ's/presenters advertising their local scene or productions!

Our audio quality also now exceeds that of most countries national broadcasters for their classical music stations as well as their "youth" stations. Online radio is now entering an exciting new phase, where it is becoming possible to listen to it on portable/mobile devices, as easily as you can with a normal radio set - which breaks down the barrier of a listener having to switch on a computer, wait for it to start up, then start the player program whilst not being distracted by other websites, facebook etc.

But we need more new content! Over the years our original DJs / presenters have got older and now have work and family commitments, many are now parents so weekends and evenings are when they would want to spend time with their kids, or they are just too knackered after work. There are plenty of spare slots for live shows anyway but there could also be opportunities to stand in for times when someone cannot do their show for any reason, to keep the live content running at times when our listeners expect it.

As an online station we do not have as strong rules as conventional broadcasters, though we do want to put across as good a sound as possible. So what we do ask is:

1. You are either able to mix well and/or present a show (for instance containing local tracks where info about them is announced) in a professional manner.

2. You have some basic audio engineering knowledge, particularly how to keep your program audio level within the accepted range for online broadcasting. if you produce tunes or mix you would already have some experience, but the level sent into a online radio server is often way less than your levels in your home studio. There are good reasons for this, so as tempting as it may be to crank it up, you must not do this or the listeners will get distorted sound. What does help is if you send your "program audio" (which you want to transmit) on a soundcard connected to a PC dedicated to this purpose and a separate mixer if you have one, and a second person checks the levels (this is what a producer does in normal radio stations).

3. Do not introduce any form of audio processing into the program audio chain, other than a hard limiter (for instance if using vinyl records where surface noise might eat into your headroom).

Even then, better to keep the records and decks clean and redline monkeys away from your equipment! I know new digital software and equipment offers all kinds of wonderful plugins for compressors etc - but these do not belong on a specialist dance music station, they are for making music with. We are not playing out ads trying to sell double glazing to folk who are driving their cars whilst listening, nor the sort of station where wannabe "personality DJ's" shout gibberish into the mic or there is news from foreign lands where rum old buggers are shooting at each other and/or there are contentious political interviews (in which case it may make sense to deploy dynamic range compression on certain programs, not all).

Doing a radio show on here is not complicated nor requires loads of extra equipment. Most people who mix already have much of what is required, and other things which can improve your show (such as meters, "cart" machines etc) are free software or very low cost.

You do not have to have gone up to university or college to produce professional radio programs, though if you have its a good way of making use of the skills you may have learned there. There are also many folk on the forums who can help you. if you regularly get together with friends to practice mixing the producing a radio show is just one step up from this, and TBH having more than one person doing everything can help as those who aren't playing tunes can be checking levels or the chat room for interaction with listeners.

Only a few years ago it was impossible to do this without either setting up a pirate station and risking getting in trouble, or teaming up with local community stations and being limited by the license requirements or other commercial considerations. Currently we can broadcast to people around the world from our own chosen locations, its a resource worth making use of!

If you are interested please send me or DaftFader a PM on with details of what genre(s) you want to play and other info (for instance if you are not in the UK timezone which one you are in) and get a mix/demo to via sendspace.

If you have any other queries or suggestions (technical or to do with the radio format itself) then feel free to start a new topic on in the radio section. (please don't bung everything on the end of this thread to prevent this post being buried!)

Alex / General Lighting
Party Vibe Radio
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