SBE Holiday Luncheon Set for December 14

You’re invited to join SBE Chapter 36 for our annual holiday luncheon, this year at Mimi’s Cafe at 5180 Mission Center Road, across the street from the Mission Valley Best Buy store. We meet Wednesday, December 14th at 12 noon. RSVP via email (rsvp@sbe36.org) so that we can tell our hosts how many seats at the table will be needed. No technical presentation at this gathering–just an occasion to share holiday cheer and talk shop. No host–pay for what you order. Order anything off their extensive menu.

See you all there!

SBE Chapter 36 Gets UHF Amateur Radio Repeater

Mt. Soledad in La Jolla is now home to another radiator, KI6KHB/F. A new Yaseu Fusion repeater is broadcasting on 445.540 -. It is in Auto mode meaning if you transmit FM, the output will be FM. If you’re using the digital C4FM mode, the output will be in C4FM.

Frequency: 445.540 -, PL 88.5Hz, DSQ code: 36

Repeater output is 25 watts TPO on a station master omni antenna right above the roof line at the KGTV site.

Note: This repeater is coordinated with SCRRBA and is co-channel with the WB6AJE repeater on Mt. Wilson in Los Angeles. Outside Oceanside there may be overlap between the two machines so we’re suggesting only use the repeater if within the county.

Local broadcast engineers are encouraged to use the new repeater.

Huge thanks to Chris Durso, Gary Stigall, Bob Vaillancourt, John Bush and many others that made this year long project a reality.

ki6khb-f

(Matthew Wilson Anderson installed the system and wrote this article.)

KURS Sold to El Sembrador Ministries

KURS 1040 kHz AM San Diego
KURS 1040 kHz AM San Diego

RadioInsight.com reported last week: “El Sembrador Ministries is exercising its option to purchase silent 1040 KURS San Diego CA from Quetzal Bilingual Communications for $900,000. El Sembrador is being credited half of its time brokerage fees paid since July 2014 subtracting $310,000 from the money owed. KURS went silent in early October after failing to pay tower owner Multicultural Broadcasting due rent. $10,816 from the deposit paid to Quetzal will go to Multicultural to restore the station’s use of the tower.”

In June this year, the FCC issued a $12,000 monetary forfeiture and short-term renewal for KURS(AM) for failure to prepare issues and program’s lists in the Station’s public file and to file biennial ownership reports.

The same station was issued a Notice of Apparent Liability for violating output power limits in June 1999.

Jaime Bonilla, associated with Quetzal Bilingual Communications, also owns group Media Sports de Mexico stations XHPRS Tecate (operated by Broadcasting Corporation of America as Max 105.7), XEPE 1700 kHz (also operated by BCA), XESDD 1030 kHz Tijuana, and XESS 620 kHz Rosarito, Mexico. XESDD was noted by local engineers for its dial position only 10 kHz away from co-owned KURS, less than 20 miles away.

San Diego to Get Franken-FM

The FCC awarded Venture Technologies Group of Los Angeles a Construction Permit to build an analog channel 6 VHF “Franken-FM” transmitter on Mt. Palomar. KRPE-LP is to be licensed for 3kW Visual Power with a two-element Scala yagi antenna, a move from Murrieta. Neither their FCC CP nor database query record specify antenna polarization nor whether they are in the Mexican border zone. XETV held channel 6 from 1953 until they left the air with all other Tijuana stations in June of 2015.

If you’re not familiar with the term, Franken-FM refers to TV stations built on channel 6 analog with the purpose of using only their aural carrier on 87.75 MHz since it’s tunable on just about any FM receiver. Venture currently owns Franken-FM units in Los Angeles, San Jose, Chico, and Redding. Some VTG stations have LMA’s allowing other broadcasters to rent them.

Venture is also installing a new channel 17 low power digital outlet, KRPE-LD, on Red Mountain above Fallbrook. Curiously, the city of license is listed as South Park, CA.

Mexican TV Stations Introduce New Virtual Channel Numbers

On October 27th, Mexican TV stations aligned their virtual channel numbers with their network identifications. After re-scanning channels, you’ll find, for example, XHTJB Tijuana, physical channel 21, identifies now as 11-1 since it broadcasts Canal Once from Mexico City, replacing its most recent virtual channel number as 3-1. That last number had been its analog channel. XHJK, Azteca 13, physical channel 28, now identifies as 1-1.

Not all stations along the border are following this protocol. Tijuana’s Canal Las Estrellas, slated to be 2-1 throughout most of Mexico, was still 57-1 when last scanned. Stations were not re-identified if it was believed their virtual channel number would conflict with a US virtual channel ID.

US TV stations in major O&O markets at one time aligned their TV channel allocations with their mother networks. CBS stations signed on channel 2, NBC channel 4, DuMont channel 5, and ABC channel 7 wherever they could.

November 2016 Meeting: Lawo and the Virtual Radio Station

When broadcasters swap CD’s, cart machines, turntables and audio consoles for PC-based digital playout, mixing & processing systems, we call that Virtual Radio. At our next meeting, guest speaker Bill Bennett, Lawo’s Radio Applications lead in the U.S., will describe virtualization in greater detail by outlining the real applications in use today.  He’ll explore how broadcasters may now reap operational benefits and gains by capitalizing on I.T.’s investment in R&D and will discuss virtualization’s anticipated role in content creation and broadcast workflow in the future.

Bill Bennett, Applications Lead, Lawo USA
Bill Bennett, Applications Lead, Lawo USA

Virtual Radio is a hot topic. A recent episode of This Week in Radio Tech (TWiRT) featured a Lawo presentation on this topic. How did they conduct their broadcast interview? Virtually, of course!

Lawo is a provider of virtual radio products, digital mixing consoles, routing systems, video solutions and turnkey systems for the professional broadcast industry. Their equipment is utilized by TV and radio stations, production companies, and theaters worldwide.

Bill Bennett made his presentation Wednesday, November 9th, 2016 at iHeartMedia, San Diego before a sizable audience of local broadcast engineers.

About the Presenter

Bill Bennett has been a long time audio engineer and project manager, leading media venue technical set-up teams for several Olympics. He’s also managed NBA, NHL, and regional events. He joined Lawo last year.

 

September Lunch ‘n’ Learn: AIMS – The Way You’re Going to Do Video Production Over IP

With all the discussion regarding studio video over IP, it gets a little nutty to try and sort out all the players trying to move the industry forward.  Scott Barella, Deputy Chairman of the AIMS (Alliance for IP Media Solutions) Technical Work Group and the new CTO of Utah Scientific will explain the progress of IP video and how the standards groups of SMPTE, EBU, AES as well as industry groups such as VSF and AIMS are working together to help move the IP initiative forward.

He will also review the key differences of SMPTE 2022-6/7 and TR-03/04 and what the engineers are doing behind the scenes to make it all work together.

Scott will then also share where Utah Scientific is in their development of some key products enhancing existing systems that are raising a few eyebrows.

Join us for this bonus meeting Wednesday, September 21, at 12 noon at KFMB Stations, 7677 Engineer Road. Utah Scientific will pick up the tab for lunch.  This is truly bleeding edge information that we’re lucky to see the day before the presentation is made in L.A.

September 2016 Meeting: BDI On Transmissions Parts

Something we don’t talk a lot about are the precision electro-mechanical devices we use at the transmitter–the RF power metering, RF switch control, dummy loads, and so on. What goes into this gear? What’s the state of the art? We intend to take the wraps off this wizardry at this month’s SBE meeting. Bob Tarsio, President of Broadcast Devices Incorporated, will present information about the advanced devices used in transmitter plant infrastructure.

Bob spoke Wednesday, September 14th at KGTV in San Diego before a number of local engineers.

Bob’s been at BDI since 2002, when he left a 20 year stint at Viacom as their Director of Engineering. Earlier, he was a radio Chief Engineer at what was WLTW/WAXQ in New York.

Making Waves Editorial: To Chill or Not to Chill

In August 1980 I was in my second year of TV engineering at KTVZ Bend when my boss Jess Ortega and I were to be on a live, local call-in TV show at 7pm at the station, talking about TV reception. About 30 minutes before air time, the transmitter dumped. As in—we were off-the-air. We jumped into the truck dressed in our suits, drove to the transmitter site, and were able to immediately put it back on-the-air because it had cooled during our drive. The show was re-scheduled for the next evening. Continue reading Making Waves Editorial: To Chill or Not to Chill

Homegrown Pico Digital to Talk About Their Station in a Box

Many, if not most, radio stations these days have an Xpress box to bring them some flavor of satellite-delivered content, whether a talk show or syndicated music broadcast. But did you know these receivers are made in San Diego? Did you know they can be programmed to operate as self-contained radio automation systems? What can networks do with these store-and-forward devices?

Damon will talk about their watermarking and monitoring technology as well.

Pico Digital started as Pico Macom in 1969, selling TV modulators and related RF devices for the cable TV and hospitality markets. They still make and sell sophisticated cable RF modulators, but have widened their offerings to include radio and TV IRDs.

Damon Semprebon of Pico Digital will give a talk on the capabilities of the Xpress line of receivers and other Pico products of interest to TV and radio broadcasts Wednesday, August 10th at 12 noon at KFMB, 7677 Engineer Road in San Diego. We’ll have a small lunch provided by Pico Digital, then the presentation. Members and guests welcome.

About Our Presenter

Damon Semprebon has 30 years experience in technical project management, product development, and other technical services. Before coming to Pico Digital a year ago, he spent 25 years at the San Diego company variously known as Comstream, Tiernan, Radyne, Comtech, and International Datacasting.