Thanks for all the research Rod! And others too. This is fascinating. I wondered why so many big
band performances were captured in air-checks, but I think I now know -- the transcriptions were
made by and/or for the sponsors, who would generally sponsor an entire program. Studios in NYC that
did a lot of commercial work often offered air-check service, which was recording from a tuner in
the control room to a professional quality tape or disk. This must have been proof-of-performance or
proof-of-broadcast for ad agencies and sponsors. And your posting below explains why most radio
stations had a tuner in the station manager's office instead of or along with a direct feed from the
line to the transmitter.
Now here's a followup question. If an affiliate recorded a program off the network feed line for
delayed broadcast, is that an air-check or something else?
-- Tom Fine
----- Original Message -----
From: "Rod Stephens" <[log in to unmask]>
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Thursday, February 09, 2006 7:03 PM
Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] "Aircheck" history
> Hi Tom,
> Here's an even more possible explanation from this web site by an amateur ham:
> "The term "aircheck" is borrowed from broadcasting, where disc jockeys and newspeople can hear
> their on-air performance with a sense of realism not possible by simply recording from the studio
> The realism comes from how someone's voice is changed by the audible characteristics of the
> station's transmitter, audio chain and processing equipment. For broadcasting, it's an absolute
> way to judge "loudness" against a competitor."
> I've always understood it also was used by engineers to check the quality of radio broadcasts and
> transmitters "over the air".
> Rod Stephens
> Tom Fine wrote:
>> What is the genesis of the term "aircheck" and how did it come to mean "off-air recording", or
>> did it mean something different at another time?
>> -- Tom Fine