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SAM Broadcaster Timing Issues

I’m having problems getting some of my programs to start at the correct time. Like, a show that is supposed to begin at 3pm sometimes doesn’t start to stream until after 4 o’clock. How can I get this fixed?

Unfortunately, not easily. While Music 1 is fully capable of putting “time update” commands into any playlist file that it makes for automation/playout systems, SAM is not capable of reading-and-following such commands the way professional automation systems are. To get something to happen at a specific time with SAM, you have to write one of those pesky PAL scripts.

The best you can do is to get as close to 60 minutes of total content in every clock/hour in the M1 schedule. Then that 3pm show may not start at 3pm sharp, but you can get it to launch very close to the desired time; a few minutes early or a few minutes late.

Many broadcast stations over-schedule every hour with an extra song or two for “padding”. They’re there in case the hour happens to be under-sold. Meaning: the station set aside fourteen minutes in the hour for commercials. If they only sold ten minutes of spots in an hour, they’d need one of those songs to fill it out. For this reason, Music 1 allows any clock to be over-scheduled well beyond sixty minutes. If a station is using an automation/playout system that can do it, then M1 can put a “sync” code into the playlist file that tells the playout system to drop the over-scheduled content when need be and jump to the first unit in the next hour at the desired time.

Again, SAM can’t read/use such a command from any music scheduler, so the best thing is to do some last minute edits to the schedule. On the scheduling screen, down in the lower left corner, M1 displays four timing fields. The first field displays the expected starting time of the hour you are currently viewing. If you see that your 3pm hour will be starting well after the top of the hour, you can scroll back and delete content from earlier hours so as to get that 3pm hour/show to launch close to your planned time.

Here’s a screen-shot:

Webradio Playout Timing

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