Jun 1, 2008 12:00 PM, by Erin Shipps, associate editor
That was then
These photos were sent to us by Steve Dresser, chief operator at KMPH-TV 26, Fresno, CA. Dresser's current employer owned KFRE 940 Fresno for a few years in the 1990s. The first photo is the KFRE transmitter room in the early 1950s. The 50kW General Electric BT-25-A that went on the air in 1949 can be seen. It shows the four-tower system phasor cabinet that is still in use and the transmitter control desk. Like many AM radio stations in the 1930s, 940 Fresno started as a 250W station on a different frequency. Over time it evolved into the only 50kW AM station from Bakersfield, CA, to Stockton, CA. Current call letters on 940 are KWRU. The station is on the air with a Harris DX-50 50kW transmitter with a Harris MW-50 50kW transmitter as a backup.
Dresser also sent us two photos of WPTR 1540 Albany, NY's, "Golden Studios." AM 1540 first signed on the air in 1948 with 10kW of power. In 1953, the station gained network affiliation with ABC and increased to 50kW. After a fire in 1964 damaged the inside of the studio building, a new 10,000-square-foot broadcast facility was constructed at the transmitter site, and programming originated from what became known as the Golden Studios until 2005 when the building was demolished. Programming now originates from new digital facilities inside the transmitter building. WPTR calls are now on 96.7 FM in Albany and 1540 is still on the air but with different calls.
Sample and hold
Jacobs Media Tech Survey IV for 2008 has proven that Ipod usage is and incredible force to be reckoned with. The following data shows Ipod listening vs. radio listening. Up from last year, 22 percent more people own MP3 players in 2008 and its effect on radio is rapidly growing.