November 1, 2007
Do you remember?
In the March 1965 issue of Broadcast Engineering, RCA advertised a new look for its transmitters. Pictured here is the 20kW, RCA BTF 20E, but the 5 and 10kW versions had the same cabinet. The transmitters' new look came with new exciters and new circuits for “operating simplicity and full fidelity sound.” The newly designed transmitters included eye-level monitoring, “space age” colors, a built-in remote control, solid-state power supply, fewer components and better accessibility. Field modification of 5 or 10kW to a higher power required only a change in basic power-determining parts.
Do you still have one of these old transmitters in use? Take a photo and tell us about it at radio@RadioMagOnline.com.
That was then
During the atomic-fearing 1950s and 1960s, many buildings were equipped with bunkers. WBT-AM in Charlotte, NC, is one of those buildings. The aboveground transmitter facility dates back to the 1930s, but WBT's bomb shelter is frozen in the 1960s. It was built in 1963 and is still capable of transmission, with equipment including a Gates five-channel console, which replaced the original RCA, a tube-type Marti receiver, Magnacord tape machines and RCA 18" transcription turntables.
The station is also stocked with survival crackers, proudly stamped April 1963, and a 7-gallon water barrel, both unopened. There are also giant air filters, a wool blanket, a sanitation kit and a quart of old iodine. The studio was tested on-air in the Sixties, but was never actually used. Today it stands as an untouched symbol of the past, and the fear the entire nation once felt.
More photos of the WBT facility can be found online at RadioMagOnline.com.
Sample and Hold
The Influence of Radio
Of heavy users of various forms of media, radio listeners are more likely to purchase an automobile.
Adults planning to purchase a vehicle in the next 12 months.
Heavy users defined: radio – listen three or more hours per day; outdoor – 200 or more miles per week; Internet – one hour per day; TV – five hours per day; newspaper – one hour per day
Source: Media Audit