All posts by Gary Stigall

John Battison Dead at 96

SBE founder and first president John Battison has passed away in Loudonville, Ohio. According to an article written about him by his editor Chriss Sherer at Radio Magazine Online, John had a long, distinguished career as broadcast engineer, both in the U.S. and internationally. He served as staff broadcast engineer, technical consultant, writer, and lecturer. He founded the Society of Broadcast Engineers in 1963 and was honored with the SBE’s Lifetime Achievement Award in 2006.

Audio Loudness Seminars Presented by SBE and ATSC

The Advanced Television Systems Committee (ATSC) and the Society of Broadcast Engineers (SBE) have partnered to offer a day-long seminar discussing important updates in DTV audio loudness standards and the implementation stage of the FCC’s Commercial Audio Loudness Mitigation (CALM) Act. The CALM Act becomes effective on December 13, 2012.

Experts from the industry will present FCC rules and updated information on the CALM Act, practical solutions for implementation, loudness measurement and monitoring technology, receiver processing and equipment solutions and an in-depth tutorial on ATSC’s Recommended Practice A/85. Speakers for the seminar include Jim Starzynski, NBC Universal; Pat Waddell, Harmonic; Steve Lyman, Dolby Labs; Tim Carroll, Linear Acoustic; Steve Silva, Fox; and Dave Higgins, Comcast.

The Audio Loudness seminars will be held in Chicago, Ill. on August 23; Los Angeles, Calif. on September 27; and Atlanta, Ga. on November 13. Station engineers, broadcast executives, cable operators, satellite TV providers, the content creation community and other industry professionals will find these seminars of great value and packed with practical information.

Members of ATSC and members of the SBE may register at a discounted rate of $95. The non-member rate is $150.

Details of the September 27 seminar in Los Angeles and the November 13 seminar in Atlanta will be available soon. Attending this seminar at any of the three locations qualifies for one credit, identified under Category G of the Recertification Schedule, for SBE Certifications.

If you have questions regarding this seminar series, contact Kimberly Kissel at SBE via email or by phone at (317) 846-9000. You may also contact Lindsay Shelton-Gross at ATSC via email.

Lunati Leaving Town

Longtime San Diego broadcast and two-way tech Matt Lunati says he’s leaving San Diego for Yuma, Arizona. Besides participation in numerous broadcast projects through the years, he has extensive experience as a Motorola technician. Matt owns Combined Wireless and set up channel 7 on Mt. Woodson. He says he will continue to work with the station as a technical consultant. He has three amateur UHF repeaters on the air that he says he will continue to remotely control over IP.

Why the move? “I have been raised in San Diego most of my life and consider myself a native but I have noticed that San Diego has changed, not for the better and not for the worse. Lets say its changed….”

You can contact Matt at 928-554-7588,, or by mail at 11881 S.Fortuna Rd., Yuma, Az. 85367.

Entravision Wins Channel 25

The FCC last week granted KTCD channel 25 for a low power digital TV service. The twist is that this UHF construction permit puts the facility on the KGTV tower on Mt. Soledad.

In order to gain the CP, Entravision settled with Civic Light, the former license holder of K63EN in Hillcrest, for a competing application. Matt Lunati of Civic Light says they decided to pull out of the channel 25 competition without compensation. The company maintains KZTC-LP channel 7 on Mt. Woodson that they plan to flash to digital.

Entravision buys a great deal of flexibility with the new installation. They operate English-language network affiliate MyNetwork TV, and Spanish language affiliates for networks Univision, Telefutura, and Telemundo. They will be able to multicast any combination of those signals from Mt. Soledad.

They currently operate KBNT-LD 51 digital at Mt. San Miguel, KTCD-CA 17 analog downtown at the KNSN 1240 AM tower, XHDTV 47 digital and 49 analog at Cerro Bola near Tecate, KHAX-LP 49 analog in Vista, and XHAS 33 analog and 34 digital at Mt. San Antonio in Tijuana.

Verizon Fires Off First Emergency Alerts in San Diego

I was working in my office yesterday when I heard the familiar emergency alert dual tones coming from another room. It didn’t fully register with my conscious mind until it happened again. I found on my Verizon Droid X2 device notification of potential flash floods in the desert and mountain areas. An app called Emergency Alerts had been triggered.

Media sources reported 700 lightning flashes, and the rains did fall by the inch in the desert east of San Diego County, creating dangerous driving conditions and flash flood danger in desert gullies.

Of course, the problem is that the information wasn’t properly regionalized. This is a great step toward enlarging the alert system beyond broadcasting to personal communication devices and desktop computers, but users are likely to block notifications if are irrelevant. That crying wolf thing.

Verizon says it knows of the problem and will work to do a better job of matching location of the emergency to the location of its customers.

The National Weather Service provides the alerts and maintains an information page on the subject. They don’t detail how they are handling CAP location data.