RRR Open day
Rrr Open Day
Wednesday, 30 September 2009 12:05 Hrs
❝ 'The station initially operated on a one-year ‘experimental' license that stipulated that the station broadcast 'messages containing matter of an educational character'. Who says punk can't teach you a thing or two?' [0]

Back before digital radio, Internet radio there was only AM. When FM was first broadcast the only stations you could listen to was the ABC, a alternative station called EON-FM (now radio Bogan, MMM) and Triple-R. [0] That was it. RRR has it's roots in my old alumni, RMIT [1] and from 1980 onwards while the other commercial stations have experimented with everything from narrow format, AOR, from Shock Jocks to No-Jocks, RRR has just improved. Read the code of practice to see how the code of practice [3] guides the station.

Open Day

In the morning I went off to the Triple R open day. It's not often you get the chance to have a guided tour. RRR is a community radio station, as anti-commercial as you can get. The presenters don't get paid, the funding is from user subscriptions. The equipment is either new, borrowed or on loan. RRR should be thought of as a ecosystem of different shows each with their own niche. Each finding their own audience and supporters.

As I got there an accident happened outside the studio. It wasn't hard to find (Corner of Blythe and Nicholson St.) I'd worked in the area back in the 90's so it was familiar territory. Even managed to get a parking spot nearby. The station is situated right at the corner in an old industrial building and covers two land titles. You can't miss it with the logo's and the transmission antenna. So before I got in I took a few happy-snaps of the accident and went in. Thought the open time was 1030Hrs but it was 1000.


Inside the tour started. First an intro into one of the three studios. The studios are all the same and stretch from one side of the building to another with windows between them. So if the main studio next door didn't have paper stuck over the windows you could see from one end of the building to the next.

The layout of the studio was pretty clean and neat. A double desk with a movable microphone, an audio console, a telephone and a new addition a computer. The computer with Internet access means questions can be looked up and answered faster. RRR is a mac friendly environment probably because of the superior sound processing software.


From Studio one we went across the hall to some of the production booths where recording and live mixing takes place. The interesting bit? The expensive digital system has analogue backups just in case the digital system breaks down. Moving from the production booths and passing the live to air shows (Radio Marinara, Radiotherapy and later Einstein A Go Go.

I missed eat-it :( with it's great intro.) past the green room to check out the Sound Performance room. A dedicated concert space complete with (loaned) $AUD 90K mixing board, stage and most important sound proofing. Watched a band warming up and had a chat to a volunteer who from Perth reckons RRR is the bee's knees of places to work. Just a reminder, RRR is a volunteer organisation. Most if not all don't get paid and it's this fact they don't have to bend to commercial realities that makes the place a calm place to visit. I was a bit envious of the RRR bean bags. Bean bags rule.

Sound stage

From the sound stage I went to first the record collection, then the CD collection. The catalogue is stored in a database for easy access but it appears the presenters also bring their own CD's, albums for playing as well. Then out for a quick bbq'd snag then back through the offices. The offices are open spaced with lots of white light and retain the factory feel. Downstairs it's dark. It just feels right. I never quite worked out why, nor did I ask.

By this time I'd been through the entire place and it was time to leave. Picked up some t-shirts, a mug and some cup-cakes and made my way out the front door. The car smash was still being sorted out and I had to move. I had a shed to help put up.


[0] Triple R, About RRR, Codes of Practice, [Accessed Tuesday, 22nd, 2009]

[1] http://www.rrr.org.au/about/history/

[2] http://rmit.edu.au/

[3] Triple R, "About RRR, Codes of Practice", Ibid.


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