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Robert Cham wrote:
>> All the networks started airing one-hour delayed programming for the 
>> non-Daylight Saving Time stations after the war, and this led to ABC 
>> (which had been NBC Blue before 1942) allowing Bing Crosby to 
>> pre-record and edit Philco Radio Time in 1946.
>
> After financing Alexander Pontiof's (SP?) development of the first 
> Ampex tape recorders from the Telefunken recorders brought back from 
> Germany after WW II.  Crosby used to tell the story of how the 
> superior signal to noise ratio of tape was responsible for ABC's 
> decision.  Similar stories of how Telefunken's development of tape 
> recording during WW II enabled the Germans to confuse the allied 
> bombing command about the whereabouts of Hitler at any given time abound.
>
> Bob
>
>
This story is almost complete fiction.  First of all, the tape machine 
was developed and made by AEG not Telefunken.  Two entirely different 
companies.

Second, that Hitler story is laughable.  Hitler would "be" where ever 
the broadcast announcer said he was!!!  Besides, Hitler was not making 
many speeches during the war.  The sound quality of distant radio 
reception would mask any differences between a speech recorded on tape 
and a speech recorded on disc.  Steel tape recording on 
Blatnerphone/Marconi-Stille machines was done by the BBC in England 
since 1929, so there were other familiar ways to avoid surface noise.  
The Philips-Miller mechanical recording-optical playback machine was in 
common use in Europe before the war, and was capable of long continuous 
quiet recordings of higher quality than the early tape recorder.  And a 
freshly recorded lacquer disc was very, very quiet and capable of 
frequency response way beyond 10 KHz even in the 30s.  There are so many 
other reasons why that Hitler story is a joke but these should be 
enough  Those stories only "abound" because they get be repeated without 
any research. 

Lastly, the entire first season of Philco Radio Time was recorded and 
edited on DISC.  Tape was only used for mastering and editing starting 
in the second season, and even then the tapes were dubbed to disc for 
broadcast.  The tapes were not directly aired until the final weeks of 
the second season.  Therefore the use of tape had absolutely nothing to 
do with ABC's decision.  The only part of the story that is true is that 
Crosby put money into Ampex, but Jack Mullen had already gotten Ampex 
working on developing improvements on the AEG Magnetophons he had 
brought back.  But ironically the first tape machines ABC bought were 
Stancil-Hoffman. 


Mike Biel  [log in to unmask]