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Discrepancy Sheet

The Dawn of Plug and Play

Posted by Tom Vernon on July 23, 2015

BA-24The advent of modular electronics was a great leap forward for broadcast maintenance. Many of us remember the Gates Solid Statesman line of consoles - the Executive, Stereo Statesman, Gatesway II, Dualux II, and Diplomat, as some of the first items of studio gear that had plug-in modules. The amplifiers, power supplies and muting control could all be swapped around, which was a great aid in isolating troubles, repair, and staying on the air.

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Topics: Vintage Radio Technology

Found in the Attic: Ampex TU-40 Flutter Meter

Posted by Tom Vernon on July 17, 2015

Ampex Flutter MeterIn the digital age of WAV files and hard drives, sound appears as if by magic from a PC or iPhone. But it wasn't that long ago that audio reproduction involved something going around, be it a turntable platter, tape or cassette reel, cart hub, or film reel.

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Topics: Vintage Electronics

Found in the Attic: National Radio NC-HFS VHF Receiver

Posted by Tom Vernon on July 13, 2015

HFS VHF ReceiverDuring a recent Found in the Attic we visited Malden, Massachusetts while discussing the Millen 90651 grid-dip meter. Malden was also the home of National Radio Company. It occurred that after about 25 installments of FitA, no NRC equipment has ever been hauled down from the great upstairs for a write-up. Easy to remedy. The only challenge was finding something a bit unusual. Almost hidden behind a stack of National shortwave receivers was a 1949 NC-HFS VHF radio. Yes, that will do.

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Topics: Vintage Radio Technology

Found in the Attic: Heath IT-28 Capacitor Checker

Posted by Tom Vernon on July 13, 2015

Heathkit IT-28 Capacitor CheckerThis edition of Found in the Attic might better be called Found on the Workbench, because that is where this item lives. The Heathkit IT-28 capacitor checker is an incredibly useful device, particularly when working on vintage gear. Most modern test equipment, even inexpensive items, can run circles around older test and measurement devices. But there are a few items that have a timeless design that enables them to thrive in the digital age. The IT-28 is one of them; there are things you can do with it that can't be done with digital devices. Of course, the IT-28 is a vintage device itself, dating from the late 1960s.

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Topics: Vintage Electronics

Found in the Attic: General Radio 1550-A Octave Band Noise Analyzer

Posted by Tom Vernon on July 13, 2015

General Radio 1550-AA recent installment of Found in the Attic looked at the Allison Laboratories 650 Random Noise Generator. Tuning up a multiband audio processor with pink noise was discussed as an application of noise generators. The classic Texar Audio Prizm was used as an example. We mentioned that you could measure the noise output of the device under test with an AC VTVM at the individual band outputs, oscilloscope, low frequency spectrum analyzer, or Real Time Analyzer (RTA). To complete the 1960s vintage noise measurement series, this installment of Found in the Attic looks at the General Radio 1550-A Octave Band Noise Analyzer.

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Topics: Vintage Electronics