Sunday, May 21, 2017

DRM dominates conversation at NASB 2017

I just returned from another fun and interesting National Association of Shortwave Broadcasters conference, this year hosted by KVOH at Rancho Simi, California. Yet again, the enthusiasm for DRM was apparent with both the presentations being made as well as the conversations between sessions.

Full disclosure - I presented one of the DRM sessions. I covered the current status of DRM worldwide, the new DRM application Turms Tech LLC from New Jersey, the latest updates from Gospell on the GR-216 and a bit on the non-DRM topic of the VOARadiogram

George Ross followed-up with much anticipated details about the imminent release of the Titus II by PantronX. George is confident that we are about a month away from seeing production models become available. This receiver appears to be the game-changer we all have been waiting for.

We were also fortunate to have Jerome Hirigoyen of TDF in attendance. He offered us some details and insight about the SmartCast / NavCast development. He brought along a sample of one of the series of receivers under current development. Their ambitious project includes maritime weather and safety information as well as audio news and entertainment broadcasts via a system of MW and SW transmitters deploying DRM.

No NASB meeting is complete without a trip to a studio or antenna field, and attendees were not disappointed this year! Not only were the sessions held at the KVOH and 99.1 The Ranch studios (BTW original KHJ console seen in this photo!), but we all braved a death-defying van ride to the top of Chatsworth Peak, the home of the KVOH Transmitter! 

I rode in the van driven by KVOH's Ray Robinson. Mr. Robinson deftly maneuvered the curves, boulders and pot-holes to get us safely to the top and back again. 
JD Tayloe served as our MC for the conference and for our tour of the transmitter facility. He and his crew really took amazing care of us. A special shout-out to Bari and Ray for their fine organizational and driving skills!

As much as the technical topics and presentations are an attraction to attend NASB, I once again recognized that the friendships and camaraderie of this group are why I return. NASB members and enthusiasts alike come to share a bond and support one another in the thing they all love... Shortwave Radio! Of course we all love food too and the pair makes this small group inseparable.

We ended our adventure with a tour of the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library. It really is a grand place. The Air Force One exhibit was truly the highlight for me. This Boeing 707 flew seven presidents, from Nixon through George W. Bush.