MS/AS signals on 96.1

After the shutdown of Melbourne community station Lion FM, I’ve already had a handful of interesting signals on our new blank frequency. Few of them I can identify clearly, but I’ll share them with you anyway

MS ping 1

A fairly clear but short MS ping, this one kinda sounds urban. My guess is “The Edge 96ONE” from Katoomba NSW, or JJJ from Lismore NSW. Can’t really be sure though.

MS ping 2

Even shorter than the first, and also affected by the fact that it had to overcome the blank signal from the local 96.1 that was still broadcasting at the time. My guesses are the same, though this pop piece means Star FM Mt Gambier may also not be out of the question.

AS signal

This one’s a little more developed as it’s not an MS ping – it sounds more likely aircraft scatter (ironic given the lack of aircraft flying in this part of the world at the moment). There are two songs, both by U2 as part of a doubleshot. At about 1:20, there’s an ID which while muffled sounds like it says “suburban doubleshot”. My guesses are Star FM Mt Gambier or perhaps even more likely, 7THE (Radio Hobart) from Tassie.

Either way, some interesting results have come in just hours after DXers got the use of this frequency back here in Melbourne.

96.1 Lion FM Melbourne shutdown

For those who weren’t aware, Jewish community radio station Lion FM, based in the Melbourne CBD, turned off its transmitter today after its temporary broadcast licence expired at midnight this morning.

96.1 Lion FM were on air for about a year, broadcasting from the Melbourne Central tower in the CBD much like Joy 94.9. Their programming was an interesting mix of lost 80s and 90s songs, combined with traditional Jewish music, proving quite an eclectic mix.

For some reason, they chose to spend their final four hours on air playing dance music. However, I put up with some of that, and managed to obtain some recordings of their final moments.

The first one is of the final speeches given by the on-air staff, and includes the final Jewish song they play before the signal falls silent. This was recorded just before midnight last night (13/06/11).

Lion FM final song

The second one didn’t end up coming until about 20 past 10 AM this morning, when the blank carrier that had been broadcast on 96.1 was finally turned off. This is the transmitter shutdown. After it is turned off, you can hear a DX signal from 96.1 3ABCFM Shepparton VIC, which was semi-permanent into Melbourne prior to the commencement of Lion FM’s broadcast.

Transmitter shutdown

As a result of recording 96.1 all night, I nabbed some MS pings that I might upload later to get some help in identifying. Sadly they are too short to really get much from though.

So now with no local station on 96.1, DXers in Melbourne will be able to nab some rare distant signals on this frequency. Usual suspects include the aforementioned Shepparton station, Star FM Mt Gambier by tropo, and by E-skip: JJJ Lismore NSW and Zinc from Gympie QLD are also quite common in summer.