Thursday, June 5, 2014

Zara Radio for Dummies

Some one new just getting into the Part 15 hobby mentioned on one of the forums that he's going to start by using Winamp for automation.... So I decided to attempt to provide a basic tutorial to show him that Zara Radio is a much better option.. So here goes nothin..
Zara Radio is really very simple to learn and use, and it consist of several useful and professional features which can be utilized to improve the operation and quality of your radio station.
Zara Radio (v1.6.2) can be run on any version of Windows from XP to 7. (not sure about 8)
Forget about just using a Winamp Playlist, your cutting yourself and your listening audience short.

  • Supportd wav, mp3, ogg and wma.
  • Complete Event System
  • 90 Instant Jingles
  • Automatic Gain Control
  •  Password Protection Capable
  • It logs every broadcasted file
  • Crossfade between tracks
  • Time, Temperature and Humidity
  • End of song detector
  • DTMF tone detector
  • Five players (1 main + 4 aux)
  • It's FREE!
  • And much more...

Here's a quick, simple,  and visual Zara Radio tutorial ...

1. - Download and set up Zara Radio
Download ZaraRadio v1.6.2 Free Edition from While you're there you might as well download the manual too as it covers many more capabilities which you may wish to explore later, as they are not even addressed in this down and dirty tutorial,  But for now, the following will quickly, and easily get your broadcast underway. .
Install the program and run.... The follow the guidelines as shown to set it up..

Just set everything up as shown in the following images to help you quickly get the feel  and configure the options and some basic features..

Now click the small clock over Events window (as shown circled above) Then click "New" button.
Follow instructions shown below...

Click OK

To have ZaraRadio announce the temperature and humidity, then click "New" again and follow the same procedure.

If you would like to have a newscast or other stream automatically play at specific times, the procedure is very similar..

 In the above example the news will play for five minutes every day at 5:30PM..
Select "Internet Stream"
Type in or paste in the stream address
(I use
For more information see this post)
Set "Start Time" at 5:30PM
Select "Immeadiate"
Select "Once a day"
Select "All" days of the week
Click "Ok"


 You need voice files and a weather retrieval program. Here are the free downloads:

3. - Download Voices for Time, Temperature, and Humidity Announcements
Zara Radio can automatically broadcast the current time, temperature, and humidity for you. You just tell it how often and/or when.
The following Time, Temperature, and Humidity voices are free. These are professionally produced files..
Time- Demented Elf  --Download and unzip these files to: C:\Program Files\ZaraSoft\ZaraRadio\Time\
Temperature- Demented Elf --Download and unzip these files to:  C:\Program Files\ZaraSoft\ZaraRadio\Temperature\
Humidity- Demented Elf   --Download and unzip these files to: C:\Program Files\ZaraSoft\ZaraRadio\Humidity\

UPDATE!: The above voice files links have gone defunct! Fortunately here's an updated link to download the identical weather voice files

4. - Download and configure Weather Watcher
For your radio station automatically retrieve and announce current temperature and humidity for your location, then you must have Weather Watcher software installed.
All versions of Weather Watcher prior to version 6.1 are free, however, the free versions can only access weather stations, which may or may not cover your specific location. Whereas the paid version also includes data, thus further expanding your choice of specific weather stations
Download Weather Watcher v6.0.6 (free version)
UPDATE 12/25/2014: v6.06 no longer parses the data to Zara, But version 5's still do.. 
You can download the free earlier version 5.6.6 at or at
Or the newest paid version ..
Download Weather Watcher Live (paid version $19 a year)

Upon installing Weather Watcher it will ask if you wish to configure options.. if it doesn't then just click on the options tab, then set up appropriately as shown in the following examples... (these screenshots are from the free version)

General Tab:

Stations Tab:

Auto Update Tab:

Export Tab:

If you just set up everything as shown in all the above, then everything should perform correctly for both Zara and weather watcher.
There are some other options you might want to look at from zararadios "Tools"/"Options".. I just got tired and didn't feel like explaining that right now, but you'll be fine with out it for now.
I'll probably re-write this later, in better detail, but the above info should get you going!  
You Later...

Also check put some methods of expanding ZaraRadio's capabilities with the use of scripts:

And another method which is a bit more complicated..