Page 2 of 4 FirstFirst 1234 LastLast
Results 11 to 20 of 31

Thread: Stations should revive Quadraphonic to attract more listeners

  1. #11
    Moderator/Co-Administrator
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    SoCal
    Posts
    38,876
    Quote Originally Posted by Uncle Kaimbridge View Post
    I'm not anywheres near San Antonio (I'm a Beantown Boy! P=), so I have no clue about the SA market or the station you are talking about, but I'm guessing that AM station has an FM translator to match, in which case the tail is wagging the dog (i.e., the AM is just there to feed the FM).
    In this case the oldies AM, KONO, is there to complement what is one of the top couple of stations in 25-54 and in revenue, Cox’s classic hits KONO-FM which carries on a call letter brand that goes back many decades to when it was a Top 40 station.
    Last edited by DavidEduardo; 06-06-2018 at 01:17 AM.
    www.americanradiohistory.com
    Broadcasting Magazine and Yearbooks, Billboard, Cash Box, R&R, Record World, Music & Media, Audio, Television/Radio Age, R&R, Duncan's American Radio, Popular Electronics, Studio Sound, Broadcast Engineering, db, and more.

  2. #12
    More likely the FM feeding the AM. Cheap STL.

  3. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by TheBigA View Post
    The ill-fated WQIV-FM in NYC marketed itself around quadraphonic in 1974. It lasted a year. Of course there were other factors, but the quad moniker didn't help them then. I doubt it would make a difference now.
    WBCN Boston also did around that time. Their method caused a somewhat out-of-phase sound on a conventional two-channel FM stereo receiver, and some phase cancellation on a mono receiver.

  4. #14

    Harris Exciters

    The old MS15 and MX15 Harris exciters had a marked card slot for "Quad" in the front. I think I have one of each version in storage; find that card then name your price and four glorious channels of non-decodeable audio could be hanging on your carrier too. The MX15 handles low bass processing wayyyyy better than the unmodified MS15, though. Keep that in mind if you plan to move into the 1990's and attempt some type of 5.1 modulation. That LFE channel might send the MS into carrier-related hysterics.

    Sorry, just rambling in jest on a Monday morning. More coffee, please....
    -D

  5. #15
    The FCC finally did adopt a standard for broadcasting quadraphonic FM -- in 1983, long after the quad fad had passed, so nobody cared about it anymore. (Fun fact: compact discs were originally designed to support quad as well, but nobody ever made use of it, so it was removed from the Red Book standard in the late '80s.)

    But I remember circa 2005 there was a big push to get HD Radio to support 5.1 channel surround sound -- Orban and Omnia even talked about introducing surround sound-capable audio processors for it. But splitting HD into subchannels quickly became the more attractive idea, and it's hard enough to get even acceptable-quality stereo sound out of 24 kbps, let alone 5.1 surround sound...

  6. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by Uncle Kaimbridge View Post
    I'm not anywheres near San Antonio (I'm a Beantown Boy! P=), so I have no clue about the SA market or the station you are talking about, but I'm guessing that AM station has an FM translator to match, in which case the tail is wagging the dog (i.e., the AM is just there to feed the FM).
    Actually KONO AM 860 doesn't have their FM translator 92.3 on yet, and filed it after switching back to Oldies from Sports as the Big 86 KONO. KONO was the heritage Oldies station back in the 80's which at a time competed with Magic 105.3, and 99.5 KISS. KONO flipped to Oldies around 1987 or so and didn't have an FM counterpart until 1990 when they LMA'd KFAN 101.1 which at the time the COL was in Fredericksburg. But they also now stream with the Big 86 app.

  7. #17
    I know this is an old thread but needed to add this. Chicago re-released all their quad albums as a package in the last year or two - Chicago Quadio is the name. The first album thru Chicago 10 (excluding 4 which was a live album and not done in quad) - on blue ray with quad converted to 5.1 surround. When I listen to it I hear stuff in the recordings I never heard before. Really cool. Maybe other bands will or have done the same.

  8. #18
    The key problems that kept Quad from penetrating the market was confusion over formats (4 discrete, 5, 6, or 7 matrixes formats depending on who is counting) none fully compatible with each other, some not at all. Then there was the problem of correctly placing 4 speakers in a typical living room, with one listening position that worked well, dead center in the middle of the speaker array. And the death blow: more than twice the cost of stereo, and relatively few releases. Fortunately a bit of the matrix decoding tech morphed into Dolby Stereo sound in film (4.0), and from there came 5.1. The speaker plan for 5.1 dramatically increases the good listening area over stereo, and of course the one-seat quad plan.

    If broadcasters were more forward thinking when HD Radio was forced on us,and had partnered with the music industry to get 5.1 music into general release its just possible both industries could have been given a boost. Think of all the new and remastered music it would take for an “All 5.1, All The Time” format!

    Instead we use the bandwidth to slice up the pie into smaller slices with low bit rate HD2 and HD3 “stations”. Smart, that was not.

  9. #19
    Moderator/Co-Administrator
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    SoCal
    Posts
    38,876
    Quote Originally Posted by dc2bluelight View Post
    The key problems that kept Quad from penetrating the market was confusion over formats (4 discrete, 5, 6, or 7 matrixes formats depending on who is counting) none fully compatible with each other, some not at all. Then there was the problem of correctly placing 4 speakers in a typical living room, with one listening position that worked well, dead center in the middle of the speaker array. And the death blow: more than twice the cost of stereo, and relatively few releases. Fortunately a bit of the matrix decoding tech morphed into Dolby Stereo sound in film (4.0), and from there came 5.1. The speaker plan for 5.1 dramatically increases the good listening area over stereo, and of course the one-seat quad plan.
    People do not listen to radio in the living room and have not for more than a quarter century. When they did, the benefits of quad were not capable of moving the market and radio and the record industry stepped back while manufacturers stopped production. This is a "benefit" that never convinced consumers that it was of value.

    The "key problems" were in that fact: nobody cared. Few were concerned about the format because in most listening locations where most radio was consumed (bedroom, kitchen, office, workspace, car) it would have been impossible to place so many speakers or things like ambient and road noise would have negated any advantage. In the era of boom boxes, quad was just not on anyone's "need" list.

    If broadcasters were more forward thinking when HD Radio was forced on us,
    Broadcasters pushed for HD, and they did it via significant first round venture capital investments in iBiquity. It was not "forced" on radio; radio wanted it in the belief that stations had to be able to use the "digital" term to be competitive. Of course, that was wrong.

    and had partnered with the music industry to get 5.1 music into general release its just possible both industries could have been given a boost. Think of all the new and remastered music it would take for an “All 5.1, All The Time” format!
    The idea of having to replace all the smartphones and MP3 players and player software is something that consumers will not do unless they feel there is a significant benefit.

    Instead we use the bandwidth to slice up the pie into smaller slices with low bit rate HD2 and HD3 “stations”. Smart, that was not.
    And most consumers don't care. That is what drives the market.
    www.americanradiohistory.com
    Broadcasting Magazine and Yearbooks, Billboard, Cash Box, R&R, Record World, Music & Media, Audio, Television/Radio Age, R&R, Duncan's American Radio, Popular Electronics, Studio Sound, Broadcast Engineering, db, and more.

  10. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by DavidEduardo View Post


    People do not listen to radio in the living room and have not for more than a quarter century. When they did, the benefits of quad were not capable of moving the market and radio and the record industry stepped back while manufacturers stopped production. This is a "benefit" that never convinced consumers that it was of value.

    Well, sort of, but that's not really the whole story. The reason the "benefit" of quad was not realized was outlined in my previous posts. It was a seriously flawed delivery system. Add to that the cost of entry and market confusion, and thats why you end up with disinterest in the consumer.
    Quote Originally Posted by DavidEduardo View Post

    The "key problems" were in that fact: nobody cared. Few were concerned about the format because in most listening locations where most radio was consumed (bedroom, kitchen, office, workspace, car) it would have been impossible to place so many speakers or things like ambient and road noise would have negated any advantage. In the era of boom boxes, quad was just not on anyone's "need" list.
    Again, not incorrect, but a very narrow view of the real situation. First of all, during the Quad era there were many large stereo systems sold. I know, because I sold them at the same time I worked in broadcast engineering. We demoed Quad with 4 matched speakers and discrete 4 channel reel to reel tape. Had next to no takers because of the cost of entry, the difficulty of 4 speakers in the corners of the space, there weren't many of those discrete tapes around, and quad records required one of many different decoders, likely several outboard boxes. And the results were often lack luster.

    During the 1970s, thats the era pre-compact stereo systems, and pre portable "blasters". Heck, FM stereo in the car was still a fairly unusual thing. Most stereo systems were components as we came off of the large furniture console years, or at least they were receivers and separate speakers, then later in that decade the cheap pre-configured "rack systems" popped up, also with separate speakers. People did listen at home on their stereos. Yes, more radio was consumed in the car and on smaller radios, but every single component system sold received FM stereo, and a lot of music popular music was just finding its way to FM, triggering the FM music boom. Stereo was a big deal. Music was not, and still is not, listened to much in the bedroom, and it's just background in the office. That puts serious music listening in the car, and yes, at home on the "big stereo". The concept of the dimensionality of stereo should have paved the way for Quad to take it to the next step. It didn't happen for reasons mentioned. But it wasn't because "nobody cared".

    I worked for a station then that broadcast live concerts in what we ended up calling "compatible 4 channel sound" because we modified the encoder to compromise between QS and SQ. We did real live Quad surround mixes, and got a fair amount of listener comment. We even built a studio monitor system capable of switching 4 discreet channels (which we never actually did).
    Quote Originally Posted by DavidEduardo View Post
    Broadcasters pushed for HD, and they did it via significant first round venture capital investments in iBiquity. It was not "forced" on radio; radio wanted it in the belief that stations had to be able to use the "digital" term to be competitive. Of course, that was wrong.
    Um...well, if you define "broadcasters" as the NAB, then sure. But they blew it technically, they really blew it from a marketing standpoint. I don't know any hard core FM engineers that though what we then called IBOC was a good idea. They came up with an expensive system that delivered the same exact programming as FM that remains so fragile a signal that it must "fall back" to analog FM when reception is poor. It offers the consumer nothing more than FM, except for more lower quality signals. And those serve to erode the already shrinking market share. "They" rejected a cellular system which would have provided better reception because "broadcasters" couldn't get their heads around breaking open the coverage barriers, and the NAB was committed to staying in the existing broadcast bands. "They" never considered a system of broadcasting something that consumers couldn't get another way: 5.1 music. And before we go back to "nobody listens in the living room", I should point out that 5.1 solves several problems in the car, has a well controlled and defined method of intelligent down-mixing to a lower channel count, and with today's processing can realize 5.1 out of a flat, front-only speaker array...you know, like in a kitchen or bedroom. And 5.1 music on any of those would have offered something from radio to the consumer that they weren't getting.

    Quote Originally Posted by DavidEduardo View Post
    The idea of having to replace all the smartphones and MP3 players and player software is something that consumers will not do unless they feel there is a significant benefit.
    Not sure what you mean here. 5.1 headphone processing is a plugin, an add-on, or built into an OS upgrade. It's just code.

    Quote Originally Posted by DavidEduardo View Post
    And most consumers don't care. That is what drives the market.
    Apathy doesn't "drive the market", good marketing addresses and attempts to mitigate apathy. If they're so apathetic, why don't we just ditch stereo completely and broadcast mono? Nobody cares, nobody knows, and analog FM gets a 20dB quieting advantage over stereo.

    I just don't think that would fly, and I don't think consumer apathy has anything to do with it, at least in the FM and HD world. AM stereo, well, that's another discussion, and a pretty much dead one too.

Page 2 of 4 FirstFirst 1234 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

     
Useful Contacts
Community


123