Title: 1251

Wednesday, Aug 4, 2004

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Greetings. I’m your new telephone audio expert. How can I serve you?

August 4, 2004
2:57 PM

Well, okay. Not really. But as is generally the case when I put out the call for help or ask a question, the flood of e-mails I recieve is generally more than enough to give me all the possible information on a subject I could ever want. And a solution has indeed been found.

First off, I should mention that my plan of simply wiring the phone line into the soundboard the way I had been planning has been abandoned. It was essentially doomed from the start. Aside from that little feedback issue, (which is most likely due to improper grounding, but that’s beside the point) I learned a little about the way a phone line works. A) Wiring phone wires directly to a soundboard is, in fact, dangerous. The line generally pulls down about 50 volts at 20 milliamps, but when the phone is ringing, that jumps up to over 100 volts. That’s a whole hell of a lot of electricity. I wouldn’t want to take that, let alone put that into my soundboard. But again, that aside.. here’s the trouble. B) There’s no difference between the “sending” and “recieving” ends of the telephone. Sure, there’s 4 wires in the cord going to your handset… but that’s just to the handset. There’s only two wires running to the wall. All the data gets lumped into one circuit, essentially sticking what you say and what you hear all on one line. Wouldn’t work too well for radio. So I went on the hunt for a solution.

My first find was the TeleTool 2000. At first I thought this would do the trick, but this was before I learned that the two signals were piggybacked on one another. The TeleTool is really only meant for recording, anyway. I don’t want to pull down both halves of a conversation… just the one. Oh, and to clarify something, I’m actually using an honest-to-god soundboard, with inputs and sliders and everything. I prefer to do all the sound mixing in analog, and simply output the signal to a PC for broadcast. Otherwise I’d look into using software and modems and all that jazz. Anyway, I got wind from a couple of people in the broadcasting industry that what I’m looking for is called a Phone Interface Hybrid. They can be pretty expensive, but a company called Ramsey Electronics sells the PPM33 Kit for about 70 bucks (or a fully assembled one for 100 bucks). It sits between the wall and the phone, and gives you a mic input and a line input, and you can then output that signal for broadcast. It’s set up for it. So it looks like this is the option I’ll be going with. 🙂 Just wanted to give you guys the skinny on what I’d learned… try to share the wealth, as it were.