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Cable Radio

Cable Radio refers to an unlicensed radio transmission system that transmits its signal via some type of cable. There are four common types of cable radio:
Leaky Cable FM
For this type of radio station, a special type of "leaky" coaxial cable is run through a building, usually down hallways or utility shafts. The coax cable has intentionally poor sheilding, so a little bit of FM signal leaks out. The range of this type of system is usually no more than a few hundred feet from the cable. The radio station can be picked up with an ordinary FM radio, usually anywhere within the building. Because this system uses very low power, the FCC does not require that these types of stations be licensed.
   (see also: Carrier Current AM Stations)
Cablecast FM
This is a system where a radio station's FM signal is injected into a cable TV network at the head end of the system. The station signal operates at a normal FM frequency within the coax cable. To receive the station, a listener must connect the cable directly to the antenna jack on his or her radio, in the same way that one hooks up a television set to a cable TV system. An advantage of this system is that if a building already has cable-TV installed, no new cables need to be run. One drawback of this system is that many types of radios do not have a way to hook up an external antenna. Another drawback is that the radios that are attached to the cable are not portable.
Cable TV Audio Channel
This is a system where the audio signal of a radio station is played on the audio portion of a cable TV channel. The station cannot be picked up with an ordinary radio. It can only be heard if a television or VCR is hooked up to the cable TV system. This system is sometimes used on college campuses on "information" cable TV channels.
Cafeteria Radio
This system simply sends an audio signal over wires to loudspeakers in other rooms, or in other buildings. Technically, this really isn't radio broadcasting, but some campus "radio stations" use this type of system to deliver their programming to their listeners.

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