Radio Currents Online - Aug 11 - Aug 17, 2008


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125TH AES Convention Expands Broadcast Audio Profile
San Francisco - Aug 12, 2008 - In his 20th turn as chairman of the AES Convention Broadcast Committee, David K. Bialik has shaped a far-ranging program of workshops, special events and panels for the 125th Convention scheduled for Oct. 2-5 at San Francisco's Moscone Center.

Mobile/Handheld Broadcasting - Developing a New Medium
Moderator: Jim Kutzner, PBS
Panelists: Mark Aitken, Sinclair Broadcast Group; Sterling Davis, Cox Broadcasting; Brett Jenkins, Ion Media Networks; Dakx Turcotte, Neural Audio
The broadcast industry, pro and consumer technology vendors, and the Advanced Television Systems Committee have been vigorously moving towards a Mobile/Handheld DTV broadcast standard. Players from various industry segments are collaborating in an unprecedented fashion. The Panel will discuss the current situation and future prospects.

The History of Audio Processing
Moderator: Emil Torick, CBS Laboratories (ret)
Participants: Marvin Caesar, Aphex; Frank Foti , Omnia; Bob Orban, Orban/CRL; Glen Clark, Glen Clark & Associates; Eric Small, Modulation Sciences; Mike Dorrough, Dorrough Electronics; Dick Burden, Burden Associates
These pioneers in audio processing developed the tools we still use today. A lively discussion of the ongoing loudness wars is anticipated. This session is a must for understanding how and why audio processing is used.

Loudness Workshop
Moderator, John Chester
Panelists: Thomas Lund, TC Electronic; Jeffery Riedmiller, Dolby; Andrew Mason, BBC; Marvin Caesar, Aphex; James D. Johnston, Neural Audio
The panel will consider the multitude of new challenges and opportunities awaiting broadcast engineers concerned about optimum sound quality in this age of multi-channel sound and digital broadcasting. This session will explore the latest techniques in the measurement and control of loudness levels and look ahead to the next generation of technical options.

Considerations for Facility Design (A Roundtable)
Moderator: Paul McLane, New Bay Media
Panelists: John Storyk, Walters Storyk Design Group; Bice Wilson, Meridian Design; Sam Berkow, SIA Acoustics
This comprehensive overview of the myriad details associated with designing and building a facility will cover radio, television, recording studio and production environments. Wiring, acoustics, ergonomics, system integration, computer-aided design and budgeting will all be explored.

Listener Fatigue and Longevity
Moderator: David Wilson CEA
Participants: Gary Marince, Arbitron; Sam Berkow, SIA Acoustics; Marvin Caesar, Aphex; James D. Johnston, Neural Audio; Ted Ruscitti, On-Air Research
This panel will address listener fatigue and its impact on listener retention. Clearly an issue of interest to broadcasters, listener fatigue is equally important to telecommunications service providers, consumer electronics manufacturers, and music producers. Whether audience members tune out or switch to other carriers, erosion is a critical issue.

Additional broadcast panels include:

  • Audio and Non Audio Services and Applications for Digital Radio
  • Internet Streaming - Audio Quality, Measurement and Monitoring
  • Audio Transportation
  • The Art of Sound Effects with Sue Zizza and David Shinn of Radio Works
  • DTV Audio Myths
  • The Lip Sync Issue

CEA's Wilson: Radio Committed Suicide
Washington - Aug 12, 2008 - Dave Wilson, senior director, technology and standards at the Consumers Electronics Association, penned an editorial that points to radio's demise. He says the Buggles got it wrong -- video did not kill the radio star -- and satellite radio and the music industry are not to blame, but rather radio's real demise could be attributed to suicide.

Wilson does not believe that radio is dead yet, but he says that CEA research has shown that interest in free, local radio is waning. In CEA studies, respondents have indicated a desire to have a portable media player, a satellite radio receiver and other personal electronics. No one hopes to receive an AM/FM radio receiver of any kind. Not digital, not analog.

Wilson says that radio is traditionally afraid of expansion and terrified of new competition. He notes the tendency for radio to request regulatory roadblocks to limit competition and recaps radio's reluctance to consider new broadcast bands for digital use. In 1990, radio broadcasters rejected the idea to allocate new spectrum for digital use. More recently, the NAB radio board opposed the idea of using TV channels 5 and 6 for new radio services.

Wilson writes, "Radio tends to oppose improvements in its own service that would enable stations with poorer coverage to gain too much competitive ground on stations with great coverage."

"Radio needs to focus more on serving today's modern consumers -- no one wants to read its obituary any time soon."

Read his entire entry at this link.


Business

Comic Wonder, McVay, NAB Partner on Talent Search
Austin, TX - Aug 11, 2008 - Comic Wonder, operator of an online, competitive joke-telling forum, has partnered with McVay Media and the NAB to find the funniest air talent. The winner will receive $1,000, a trophy and trip to the NAB Radio Show in Austin, TX.

To enter, visit www.radioscomicwonder.com by Aug. 31, 2008, and tell your best joke. Site visitors will vote on the performances to choose the winner. The winner will be announced at the NAB Radio Show on Sept. 18.


Clear-Com Celebrates 40 Years
Alameda, CA, Cambridge, UK - Aug 12, 2008 - Clear-Com Communication Systems is celebrating its 40th anniversary. The company's first product was its party-line beltpack for live venues. Clear-Com has since expanded its product offerings into broadcasting, government, medical and house of worship segments. In 2003, Clear-Com merged with UK-based Drake Electronics.

Clear-Com notes its major accomplishments of the past 40 years: 1968 - First beltpack and analog party-line system 1976 - First four-wire intercom in 1976 1986 - First intelligent user display panel


Beasley Broadcast Recognizes Annual Operating Award Winners
Naples, FL - Aug 14, 2008 - Beasley Broadcast Group has announced the winners of its annual Operating Awards. Each year, Beasley Broadcast recognizes noteworthy achievements, operating success and contributions from individual Beasley employees and stations over the preceding 12 months. This year's honorees were presented at the company's annual gathering of general managers.

  • Thomas Manning - General Manager of the Year
  • Tom Calococci and T Gentry - Program Directors of the Year
  • John Jaras - Sales Manager of the Year
  • Pet Money - Business Manager of the Year
  • Power 96 WPOW-FM - Radio Station of the Year
The General Manager of the Year selection is based on the overall operation of the station or stations under his or her management. This year's winner is Thomas Manning, general manager of WPOW-FM in Miami, and vice president of sales for the company's three-station Miami cluster that includes Power 96 WPOW-FM, 99.9 Kiss Country WKIS-FM and Sports Radio 560 WQAM-AM. He joined the company in 2007.

Beasley bestows a Program Director of the Year award in recognition of the role program directors play in providing creative and compelling content, and consistent ratings leadership. This year, two PDs were chosen to receive the honor.

Tom Calococci, operations manager/program director for Power 96 WPOW-FM and HD2 station 96 Dash 2 Pirate Radio in the Miami market, was honored for his outstanding performance over the past 12 months. Calococci joined Beasley in 2006 as operations manager and was named program director in 2007.

T Gentry, program director for Kicks 99 WKXC-FM in Augusta, GA, has been with the station for nearly 13 years. Program director since Beasley Broadcast purchased WKXC in 2001, he is also operations manager for the nine-station Augusta cluster. This award also recognizes his major role in Kicks 99 being named the Country Music Association's Station of the Year for 2008.

John Jaras, general sales manager for Power 96 WPOW-FM, was recognized as Beasley's General Sales Manager of the Year for leading his WPOW sales team to obtain year-over-year revenue increases. Jaras' sales expertise and commitment to the market are further evidenced by the fact that he is a 20-year veteran with Beasley, having come on board as local sales manager for Power 96 in 1988.

The Business Manager of the Year Award honors the individual who demonstrates excellence in all areas of a station's business operations including financial reporting, accounts receivable and payable management, payroll and human resources. As business manager for Beasley's six Fayetteville stations, Pet Money is a three-time winner. Money started her career with Beasley Broadcast in 1983, and was named Business Manager of the Year in 1998, 2005 and now 2008.

The Station of the Year is determined based on the overall strength and success of a station. Power 96 WPOW-FM in Miami was selected this year for its strong growth in ratings and revenue, as well as cash flow performance, excelling under the leadership of Market Manager Joe Bell, General Manager Thomas Manning, and Program Director Tom Calococci.

Radio magazine congratulates these individuals on their recognition. Radio magazine also suggested to Beasley that an Engineer of the Year recognition should be added to the management team recognitions.


Sales Call
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The Radio Broadcast Facility of the South African Broadcasting Company (SABC) has just taken delivery of 15 Axia Element broadcast consoles and associated IP-Audio routing equipment. SABC will package the consoles into flight boxes for use at major remote broadcasting events, such as Soccer 2010, elections and breaking news.

The Army & Air Force Exchange Service (AAFES), which operates retail outlets that provide goods and services to U.S. military personnel and their families, recently upgraded its Wegener Compel network control system. Compel enables AAFES to deliver addressable digital HD video, SD video and audio content to satellite receivers at more than 100 retail outlets on military bases. AAFES delivers three program services: Exchange Television (EXTV), Business Television (BTV), and the AAFES Radio Network (ARN).
WERS of Emerson College in Boston is expanding its Wheatstone Bridge routing system to outfit two new studios with Wheatstone control surfaces. The station has 11 Bridge Router frames in place. The DSP required for the new G4 surface will be added to an existing frame, while the new E6 surface and associated I/O frame will be connected to the central Bridge Router frame. Emerson expects to eventually replace all of its existing analog consoles in similar formation.
Stream Guys is managing enterprise-level live and on-demand video streaming for St. Olaf College of Northfield, MN. The college relies on Stream Guys to provide high-quality, enterprise-level audio and video streaming services globally for live concerts from many of the college's music ensembles, including the St. Olaf Choir, and Sing For Joy, a weekly half-hour radio program syndicated in 200 U.S. communities plus many international countries and regions. Stream Guys also hosts live and on-demand streams for daily chapel services, guest lectures and commencements among other events.
German public broadcaster Westdeutscher Rundfunk (WDR) has installed five Fairlight Xynergi Media Production Systems at its facilities in Cologne. These are being used for a variety of audio projects, including longform radio drama.
The speed and accuracy of Prism Sound's Dscope Series III audio analyzer has led Focusrite Audio Engineering to install a second unit at its headquarters in Buckinghamshire, UK. Focusrite has been using Dscope Series III audio analyzers for many years.

People

James Stewart

Loud Technologies Appoints New COO
Woodinville, WA - Jul 30, 2008 - Loud Technologies has appointed James Stewart as its chief operating officer. Stewart will be responsible for the core operations of the company including information technologies, technical support, service and logistics as well as management of Loud's manufacturing partners.

Stewart has an extensive background as a senior business leader in technology product development and P&L operations management. Prior to joining Loud, he served as vice president and general manager at Hewlett-Packard's specialty printing unit.


Clear-Com Hires Romero as Global Customer Operations Director
Alameda, CA, and Cambridge, UK - Aug 14, 2008 - Clear-Com Communication Systems has hired Bob Romero as its global customer operations director. Romero will lead and manage the company's worldwide service and support teams, including the application engineering, technical support and service and repair teams, based in the US and UK.

In his nearly 20 years working in the worldwide communications hardware and software industries, Romero, who earned a B.S. in finance from the University of California at Berkeley, has built customer service and support teams as well as best practices programs. He has been employed with top-level companies including Chemoil, Bank of America, Ascend Communications, Alcatel-Lucent, Vpacket Communications and IP Infusion. Most recently, with Advent Software, Romero built a team to support the company's financial management software portfolio.




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