GatesAir suspends AM TX sales (Radio World)

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RodeoJack
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Re: GatesAir suspends AM TX sales (Radio World)

Post by RodeoJack » Sat Mar 17, 2018 9:39 am

Be careful about your impressions of Australia.

I have a brother and a niece who live over there. They compare Fosters with some of the cheap American stuff you see, blasted on our TVs... and when I suggested Outback Steakhouse was modeled after the spirit of their country, they nearly choked on their meal (yah... by that time, I was looking for ways to kid them). Seems that hanging a few boomerangs on the wall and pasting Aussie baby-talk signs around, authentic does not make! :-)

dd92251
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Re: GatesAir suspends AM TX sales (Radio World)

Post by dd92251 » Sat Mar 17, 2018 12:01 pm

I'm thinking that Gates/Harris is devoting all their resources to the TV Repack. They will be supplying FM transmitters as well as TV transmitters because of the Repack...so AM Rigs take a back seat. My guess is that this is going to be a 3 year long dry spell for AM rigs from them.

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kkiddkkidd
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Re: GatesAir suspends AM TX sales (Radio World)

Post by kkiddkkidd » Sat Mar 17, 2018 3:13 pm

dd92251 wrote:
Sat Mar 17, 2018 12:01 pm
I'm thinking that Gates/Harris is devoting all their resources to the TV Repack. They will be supplying FM transmitters as well as TV transmitters because of the Repack...so AM Rigs take a back seat. My guess is that this is going to be a 3 year long dry spell for AM rigs from them.
Just curious, beyond a few FM's going with lower gain antenna's and higher power TX's to clear tower space, and an even fewer that builds full power aux sites rather than lower power for RF exposure rules, how does the TV repack affect FM transmitter sales substantially?
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PID_Stop
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Re: GatesAir suspends AM TX sales (Radio World)

Post by PID_Stop » Mon Mar 19, 2018 10:24 am

kkiddkkidd wrote:
Sat Mar 17, 2018 3:13 pm
dd92251 wrote:
Sat Mar 17, 2018 12:01 pm
...They will be supplying FM transmitters as well as TV transmitters because of the Repack...so AM Rigs take a back seat.
Just curious, beyond a few FM's going with lower gain antenna's and higher power TX's to clear tower space, and an even fewer that builds full power aux sites rather than lower power for RF exposure rules, how does the TV repack affect FM transmitter sales substantially?
My guess is that a comma would clear things up. I think he meant "FM transmitters, as well as TV transmitters because of the repack"... two separate applications.

From my perch on the TV side of things (where many of our stations started their DTV service with Harris transmitters), Quincy's last few years haven't demonstrated the sort of stability that would make me favorably inclined toward one of their transmitters. Our several Diamonds haven't exactly set records for reliability, in no small part because of rather cheap connectors and switches.

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Re: GatesAir suspends AM TX sales (Radio World)

Post by Lee_Wheeler » Mon Mar 19, 2018 1:48 pm

kkiddkkidd wrote:
Sat Mar 17, 2018 3:13 pm

Just curious, beyond a few FM's going with lower gain antenna's and higher power TX's to clear tower space, and an even fewer that builds full power aux sites rather than lower power for RF exposure rules, how does the TV repack affect FM transmitter sales substantially?
There are not that many. I have one affected station on a candelabra. The TV is on one of the three candelabra legs but there are 4 FMs stacked on the adjacent two tower sections at the top. Since the work will be done dead center in the FM antennas you really can't lower power to a safe level and radiate more than 1 kW or so and my transmitters won't go that low. I have a standby centered at about 800' that is fed with some old (circa 1955) RCA universal line so (assuming that the line doesn't blow up) I'm not in bad shape other than the horrible pattern off of standby antenna since it is face mounted on a 14' face tower.

Two of the other FMs have standby sites that are nearly as good as the main other than no HD but the 4th FM has nothing. They were talking about chopping the Heliax in half and mounting temporarily mounting a 1 bay lower on the tower but that seems like a monumentally bad idea to me. No matter how hard you try you can't keep the debris from falling into the line when you cut it vertically. I see trouble for them in the future after they patch it back together.

I haven't seen the text about the circumstances to qualify for the pool of money available to the FMs but they certainly sound like a candidate for some help running up a new line for a standby antenna, If the pot of money is enough they might even be able to buy a standby transmitter to feed the standby antenna but it is a K-Love station and I don't know how EMF thinks on backup. They run naked all of the time anyway with only one transmitter and no generator. They were off the air for a whole week when they had transmitter trouble a couple of years ago.

...Lee

JustMe
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Re: GatesAir suspends AM TX sales (Radio World)

Post by JustMe » Tue Mar 20, 2018 7:59 pm

This might be the time for some enterprising group or individual to come up with some design retrofit workarounds. I am sure they
would make a killing. Whatever they may charge, I am sure it would cost far less than having to buy a new transmitter. That is, another transmitter that may also become obsolete in three years. It seems we are on a race to the bottom.

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Re: GatesAir suspends AM TX sales (Radio World)

Post by Deep Thought » Tue Mar 20, 2018 8:41 pm

Or you could buy from a company that still supports everything they've made, like brand N or B.

GatesAir/Harris has a bad habit of orphaning transmitters when they get bored with them. The SX/Gates series are still out there and parts are available from other than GatesAir. They bet the farm on the DAX series in the under-10 KW market trying to cut costs and it bit them in the ass.
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Shane
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Re: GatesAir suspends AM TX sales (Radio World)

Post by Shane » Tue Mar 20, 2018 9:52 pm

Lee_Wheeler wrote:
Mon Mar 19, 2018 1:48 pm

I don't know how EMF thinks on backup. They run naked all of the time anyway with only one transmitter and no generator. They were off the air for a whole week when they had transmitter trouble a couple of years ago.

...Lee
When K-love is off the air that’s when the $ come in from listeners in that area who think they ran out of money and that must be why they are off. I had to remind people at church that they have a tuning knob on their radios and they COULD just listen to us then. We won’t even ask them for any money.
Mike Shane, CBRE
---Omaha---

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Re: GatesAir suspends AM TX sales (Radio World)

Post by Scott.Cason » Sat Mar 31, 2018 7:38 am

dd92251 wrote:
Sat Mar 17, 2018 12:01 pm
I'm thinking that Gates/Harris is devoting all their resources to the TV Repack. They will be supplying FM transmitters as well as TV transmitters because of the Repack...so AM Rigs take a back seat. My guess is that this is going to be a 3 year long dry spell for AM rigs from them.
They might as well stay gone then. I haven't purchased an AM rig from Harris since the SX-1 days. I have no intentions of purchasing another transmitter from them, period.
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Re: GatesAir suspends AM TX sales (Radio World)

Post by RodeoJack » Sun Apr 01, 2018 11:21 am

Scott.Cason wrote:
Sat Mar 31, 2018 7:38 am
They might as well stay gone then.
I'm not sure what area they'd try to compete with, at this point. Everything from 10kW down is covered pretty well by N and B. Maybe they could go after the high power market, but could they compete and turn out enough of them to cover the R&D for the new tech they say they're working on?

Not having been near megawatt tech, I wonder if anyone would put major money on a new rig, not knowing if it would be supported 25 years down the road.

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Re: GatesAir suspends AM TX sales (Radio World)

Post by W2XJ » Sun Apr 01, 2018 9:58 pm

If New York is any indicator they won’t be selling many TV transmitters either. All but one station so far have purchased Rhode Schwarz.

Regarding power supplies, it would appear that most manufacturers choose to avoid the whole approvals process along with the liabilities involved by outsourcing. Power supplies have never been tecnically difficult except now you need lawyers more than engineers.

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Re: GatesAir suspends AM TX sales (Radio World)

Post by Kent T » Fri Apr 27, 2018 7:24 pm

W2XJ wrote:
Sun Apr 01, 2018 9:58 pm
If New York is any indicator they won’t be selling many TV transmitters either. All but one station so far have purchased Rhode Schwarz.

Regarding power supplies, it would appear that most manufacturers choose to avoid the whole approvals process along with the liabilities involved by outsourcing. Power supplies have never been tecnically difficult except now you need lawyers more than engineers.
And I suspect Rohde & Schwarz will also soon be a major make of FM transmitter in the USA. They make really superb transmitters, and once engineers on the radio side get used to water/vapor cooling, they'll be very popular here (especially if tech support is excellent)

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Re: GatesAir suspends AM TX sales (Radio World)

Post by NECRAT » Fri Apr 27, 2018 10:27 pm

W2XJ wrote:
Sun Apr 01, 2018 9:58 pm
If New York is any indicator they won’t be selling many TV transmitters either. All but one station so far have purchased Rhode Schwarz.
Well NY isn't an indicator. GatesAir is selling a TON of post repack transmitters. I can attest to several markets where 90-95% of the market will be Gates Air. Rohde Schwarz typically makes up the others.
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Re: water/vapor cooling

Post by RGORJANCE » Sat Apr 28, 2018 6:20 am

"Water vapor cooling" is a super simple system and very elegant. Harris built several xmttrs using this technique calling it "VAPOR PHASE COOLING". Only problem was that due to the dislike of water cooling, the US engineers instantly disliked it. This thinking was based on bad experiences in the past with conventional water cooling systems. Think pumps, distilling processes, etc. (I worked for KVOO in Tulsa--they had a 50kw Western linear rig. (The still was huge and the Feds inspected it every year to verify they were distilling only water).

The two Harris models were the VP-50, and the VP-100......50KW and 100KW.

Advantages were superior cooling, NO BLOWERS, no pumps and delightfully quiet operation. They sold reasonably well in the international market, but pretty much bombed in the US.

The MW series did much better in domestic sales.

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Deep Thought
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Re: water/vapor cooling

Post by Deep Thought » Sat Apr 28, 2018 12:09 pm

RGORJANCE wrote:
Sat Apr 28, 2018 6:20 am
They sold reasonably well in the international market, but pretty much bombed in the US.
I seem to recall they used vapor phase cooling in their UHF transmitters back in the 1970s.
Mark Mueller • Mueller Broadcast Design • La Grange, IL • http://www.muellerbroadcastdesign.com

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