Category Archives: News

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.

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.

Andrew Moore Assigned ACE Role at KGTV

IT Manager Andrew Moore is widening his responsibilities again as he takes the Assistant Chief Engineer KGTV, the San Diego ABC affiliate. Andrew had moved from sister station KERO Bakersfield as Maintenance Engineer in 2011, but was promoted to IT Manager in 2014. He reports to Director of Engineering Bob Vaillancourt.

Gangitano Rejoins KFMB

John Gangitano recently returned to KFMB Stations as Broadcast Engineer.

John Gangitano, KFMB
John Gangitano, KFMB

He had specialized in IT services during his stay from 2006 to 2008 and left to join L-3 Communications during the recession. He has over 16 years of widely varied IT and broadcast experience in San Diego, and has an MA in Educational Technology and BS in Business Administration from SDSU.

Scottie Rice to Take CE Helm at KSDS

Scottie Rice KOGO BasementScottie Rice will take the Chief Engineer job at City College’s KSDS and Radio, Television, and Film Department August 1st, 2016, the position left vacant after Larry Quick’s recent arrest on theft charges. Scottie has served as staff broadcast engineer at KFMB Stations since 2011, but also working part-time as engineer at KSDS. Since filling in, Scottie has made a noticeable improvement in audio processing at KSDS.

Before his stint at KFMB, he had worked for two years at Clear Channel with John Rigg, and at KHOU-TV in Houston.

Larry Quick is serving a probation term for theft of City College property.

Gary Stigall is Scottie’s supervisor at KFMB and wishes Scottie great success at KSDS. 

FCC Launches EAS Test Reporting System

The FCC EAS Test Reporting System (ETRS) is up and running. The system is for EAS participants to file identifying information, day of test data, and post-test data related to a nationwide test. The ETRS provides several new features that ease the data-entry burden on EAS participants, encourage timely filings, and minimize input errors. The ETRS also offers new data fields that are responsive to stakeholder comments.

Read more about the new system at the SBE website.

FCC Fines KURS

The FCC has issued a $12,000 monetary forfeiture and short-term renewal for Station KURS(AM), 1040 kHz, San Diego for failure to prepare issues and program’s lists in the Station’s public file and to file biennial ownership reports. The station is owned by Quetzal Bilingual Communications, associated with Jaime Bonilla Valdez of Chula Vista.

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

Bonilla’s group Media Sports de Mexico owns 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.

Time Warner Cable Purchased by Charter Communications

In much of San Diego County, your cable service provider is soon to be renamed. Charter Communications, who took over Time Warner Cable and Bright House Communications on May 18, is rebranding the combined company “Spectrum.” Support phone numbers are remaining the same as for Time Warner for the time being, but Charter is claiming their support staff is being brought back to the US from overseas, so presumably they will centralize. If you receive commercial fiber service from the old Time Warner system (TW Telecom), that part of the business was sold to Level 3 Communications in December 2014.

May 18 Meeting: RTS and Dante

By now, you’ve likely heard about the audio-over-IP protocol called Dante. It’s low-latency so that you can use it with live audio, and can pass through most data switches. Many of the largest broadcast suppliers have adopted it. RTS, the intercom company that has been around since the 1970s, will come to town and explain why their latest generation of products is knee-deep into Dante.telex-rts-logo

They can answer a few questions you might have:

  • What data rates are used?
  • What is the packet structure?
  • Does it play well in my network?
  • How many audio channels can fit at a time?
  • What is its latency? Will my air staff hear an echo?
  • When should I favor analog audio, if at all?
  • Are there phone apps that work with intercom systems now?

Jeff Shorsher of RTS/Telex will sort out these topics and more in a meeting Wednesday, May 18 at 12 noon at KFMB Stations, 7677 Engineer Road in Kearny Mesa. Join us for a lunch provided by RTS, then a general meeting and presentation. Members and guests are all welcome.

About the Presenters

Jeff Shorsher is new to RTS, but has a long history in broadcast engineering, most recently as sales representative for Commscope. He worked as engineer at KTTY (now Fox 5), Paramount Pictures, and National Mobile Television. He has math and computer science degrees from UCSD and broadcast engineering training from Palomar College.

Calvin Ogawa has served as Field Support Engineer for RTS since 2011, but has served many broadcast engineering roles in southern California, including those for Fox Sports West, ABC Network News, Paramount Studios, KCET-TV, and NPR.

KURS Hit with FCC Fine and Short-Term Renewal

The FCC in mid-April announced it had issued a $12,000 monetary forfeiture and short-term renewal for KURS(AM) 1040 kHz, San Diego, CA for failure to retain issues and program’s lists in the Station’s public file and to file biennial ownership reports. Quetzal Bilingual Communications, Inc. owns the station, which shares the self-supporting tower along I-5 near its junction with CA-15.