Before last week, SQRPT was produced on three computers. One was an Asterisk PBX that handled the incoming DID (for the call-in number), one does the Skype and the other records the show, sends it to the Icecast server and receives the calls from the call-in line. There is also a hardware mixer that connects to the audio I/O on the last two computers and handles the mix-minus between Skype and the call-in line.
Here is a view of everything but the PBX which was in a data center.
I’ve always wanted to run everything on one computer but the requirements for the show were so complex and the number of audio channels required made it impossible. Fortunately, by using OS X, I was able to combine some functions into more than one computer and only use three instead of 5.
For the last month I’ve been working on running the PBX in a Virtual Machine on the Skype iMac and for last week’s show we used it live. That means I can now retire the dedicated PBX server and SQRPT is down to needing just two computers.
But now I’m working on a fix for that using Ardour and Jack OS X. Jack lets you create virtual audio channels between applications and Ardour is a digital audio workstation that will (theoretically) do the mix-minus between Skype and the call-in line and let me also do the recording and Icecast streaming ALL ON ONE COMPUTER!
Thank god we don’t do video too…