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Information Radio Stations (TIS/HAR) •  Advisory Signage  •  Specialized Products/Services

TechTalk:  Programming an AP55 Digital Message Player

AP55 Digital Message Player Instructions
Acquaint yourself with the AP55 Digital Message Player.
Whether your application is Highway Advisory Radio (HAR), Public Information, Emergency Management, Tourism or the Outdoor Recreation, if you've purchased a radio system from Information Station Specialists in prior to 2000, chances are you have an AP55 Digital Message Programmer, the critical little component used to record and broadcast messages. Familiarizing yourself with its overall capabilities can affect your radio-programming creativity and ability to update broadcasts quickly. The variety of AP55 features available can make learning it a little confusing at first. Here are a few programming tips. 

Twenty different playlists may be created using the AP55.
A playlist is a sequence of messages joined together. Also called "strings," these message sequences can make updating your broadcast a breeze.
Strings of messages can be stored in playlists labeled from 1 to 20. To create a playlist from a remote touch-tone phone or the digital message recorder control phone, call your AP55. Enter star (*) 41 pound (#). A voice-prompt will ask for the playlist number you want to create (1 to 20) followed by pound (#).  

It may be useful to create "ghost" messages. 
For instance, to leave room for a message that needs to be aired during an emergency (or when you do not know the specifics of a message before setting playlists), it may be useful to create unrecorded message slots in a playlist. Highway Advisory Radio and Emergency Management Agencies often use ghost messages. In the following example, Message 99 is a ghost message.

Command *41#, then 1# 99# 99# 2# 99# 99# 3# 99# 

The above command-sequence creates a playlist with Messages 1, 99, 99, 2, 99, 99, 3, 99, 99 playing. Without Message 99 recorded, the on-air playlist is 1, 2, 3. With Message 99 recorded, the on-air playlist is 1, 99, 99, 2, 99, 99, 3, 99. Here's the trick, if this playlist is on the air and an emergency occurs: Call the AP55 and record Message 99. Your ghost message is now playing within the playlist.

Keep messages short, simple. 
With 250 slots to choose from, you can create short messages and string them together. With shorter messages the chance for error is limited when recording. A short message will also be beneficial when ghost messages are needed on the air frequently.
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After you enter the desired playlist number, enter the message numbers in the sequence you want them to air. A pound (#) should follow each message number, for example:

Command *41#, then 5# 10# 20# 30# 40#

The above sequence creates Playlist Number 5 with Messages 10, 20, 30 and 40 playing. To review a playlist, enter *42#. To select which playlist is on the air, enter *43#.

Messages can appear, then re-appear.
A specific message can appear in many different playlists or multiple times in one. A good example would be the call-sign message your station uses to identify itself (i.e., its call letters and numbers, required by the FCC to be aired at least every 30 minutes. If you put the call-sign message in all your playlists, you won't have to worry about not airing it enough, since most broadcast cycles are just a few minutes long.

Not all messages need to exist now.
Use the 7-day-clock to change playlists automatically.

Command *21# then 2# 0900#

The above order sets the time as Monday 9:00 AM. When scheduling a playlist to air at a specific time, use the command *22#. The AP55 will ask for the day and time you want to schedule a playlist to air. It will also ask for the playlist number + 1000.

Command *22# , then 3# 1700# 1002#

The above command will schedule Playlist 2 to air on Tuesday at 5 PM. Multiple playlists can be scheduled for the same week. Use the cancel-schedule command to remove scheduled playlists - *24# - followed by the day you wish to cancel. Or use 999 as your day number, and the entire week will be canceled. For example: *24# 3# cancels the schedule for Tuesday.

Comments? Questions? Contact a technician.

Download an AP55 cheat sheet.