WSM, Grand Ole Opry Get Loud and Proud with Omnia- 5EX

10 January 2006, Cleveland Ohio, USA

Nashville’s legendary WSM-AM, home of the world's longest running live radio program, The Grand Ole Opry, has made Omnia-5EX HD+AM its audio processor of choice.

Watt Hairston, WSM-AM’s Chief Engineer, says he was already happy with the sound of his station but agreed to try Omnia-5EX anyway, confident that WSM’s audio couldn’t be improved upon. What he discovered was quite the opposite.

Immediately after placing Omnia-5EX HD+AM on the air, Hairston says, he was called by his mid-day announcer, who asked excitedly what he had done to the sound. Was there something wrong, Hairston asked? “NO!” said the announcer, who told Watt that the station’s sound seemed to “instantly clean up” — “as if it wasn’t being processed at all.”

Mr. Hairston notes that “…the mid-range and bass was cleaned up a lot. Even when processed to the point where you’d think it would be dirty, the audio holds up very well, without intermodulation distortion or other artifacts. It’s LOUD, and very clean.” WSM is the loudest station on the Nashville dial as a result of its change to Omnia, says Hairston.

“Who says you can’t have a clean signal and still dominate the dial?” asks Frank Foti, President of Omnia Audio. “The Omnia-5EX AM+HD is packed with cool tech to help do just that. For instance, there’s a Dynamic Bass Limiter that changes its waveform characteristics based on frequency; you get bigger bass out of small speakers without IM distortion. You can crank up your Omnia-5EX to be crazy loud, and your audio will still be as transparent as a white tee-shirt in a rainstorm!”

Omnia-5EX HD+AM is the world’s first HD Radio & DAB-ready audio processor for AM broadcasters. It has a unique dual processing structure that routes processed audio from the multiband mixer section to separate, simultaneous output stages — the first optimized for conventional AM broadcasts, the second for HD Radio & DAB, webcasting, satellite and similar digital distribution networks. Features include a twoband AGC, plus wideband AGC and five-band limiter to help restore warmth, clarity and detail to AM broadcasts; the HD Radio/DAB section features Omnia’s unique program-adaptive Look-Ahead limiter, plus adjustable low-pass filtering and high-shelf EQ

Watt Hairston continues to receive positive feedback from staff, listeners, and the notoriously picky sound technicians at the Grand Ole Opry. The Opry techs, he says, used to pull everything back around 10dB to improve off-the-air sound; with the Omnia 5EX, they no longer have to. “Believe me, coming from them, that says a LOT! I get a lot of comments about how clean and unprocessed it sounds. My reply is, “Oh it’s processed alright — a lot more than you think!”

Want to find out more about Omnia-5EX AM+HD? Call Caroline Dorsey at Omnia Audio, +1-216-241- 7225, or visit



Omnia-5Ex HD+AM — from Omnia Audio
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Omnia, a Telos company, is world-renowned for its digital audio signal processing expertise. Omnia audio processors for FM, AM, TV, HD Radio & DAB, Internet, and audio production are setting new standards for professional audio quality.

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