We just finished installing one of these units on Mount Beacon for WSPK. Mount Beacon is around 1,500 feet high and is accessed by a road that is a little bit rough. After the snow flies, the only way to get there is a snow machine or perhaps a helicopter. Thus, whatever is installed there needs to be reliable.
My first comment, I recall 10 KW FM transmitters being much larger. This unit is pretty compact and we probably could have fit two of them in this Mid-Atlantic rack had we wanted to.
The transmitter itself is pretty simple, four RF modules powered by seven OEM switching power supplies with two fan power supplies, one for each fan unit. This is driven and controlled by an STXe 500-watt exciter.
The back has a 1 5/8 inch EIA flange output, some power connections, remote control interface, etc. Pretty simple overall.
I can also say, there was a noticeable improvement in the audio quality when this was placed in service.
7 thoughts on “The BE STX 10”
Welcome back to the radio side of posting, of course you were missed!
What became of the Nautel you installed here a few years ago and why?
Are you feeding that beast single or three-phase power?
I have a client with an open-delta service and the options for a new solid-state rig so far are to go to single-phase or pay $$$ for running 2 miles of wire and another pole pig to close the delta (or change to wye)…or void the warranty and take their chances with open-delta 3-phase, which I don’t want to do.
This site has three phase power, so it is three phase. You should contact BE because I think these are capable of single phase as well. The manual is a little ambiguous. Don’t do open delta.
I definitely want to get away from open delta. I’m surprised there haven’t been more issues at this site with the HT-10 that’s there now.
I’m curious: is this a post-Elenos-takeover design, or pre?
As for the size, well, you’ve done some GatesAir FLX installs haven’t you? That STX doesn’t look particularly bigger or smaller than the FAX/FLX (air cooled/liquid cooled) series. Overall I hear you: it boggles the mind how much transmitters have physically shrunk in the last 15 years. Personally I still prefer the Nautel design; I’ve talked to some of the guys there – they’ve intentionally avoided trying to shrink their >3kW units down to “fits in a rack” because those designs shave a good 10 or 15 degrees F off your max ambient temperature limit. Maaaaaaybe 20 depending on the air circulation around the TX cabinet. (although at that point, your circulation is so poor I’d start worrying even if you did have good A/C in there!) In theory, that means nothing so long as you have solid, reliable cooling in the room. But god help you if that cooling has a problem. Of course, that just means that part of the operational costs of these small-footprint TX’s is that you need to spend more on redundant air conditioning. It’s not unsolvable by any means, but, as always, it requires one to be aware of the tradeoffs. Right now I’m at a place that’s pretty invested in Nautel and I have no reason to change that, but I certainly would strongly consider moving to an all GatesAir FLX (liquid cooled) network if offered. Liquid cooling has limitations in some parts of the country where it’s just too hot or too cold for the heat exchanger to function properly, but here in New England it works niiiiiice. 🙂
Did this replace the Nautel you had put in up there or is it in addition to it?
Mike, yes this replace the Nautel V series transmitter that was up there. There is a Nautel VS2.5 which is still the backup unit.
Brad, I don’t know when this was designed. I had seen the STXe exciters previously with the FM C series transmitters. That design has been around for a few years now.