97.9 MHz
Long Beach, CA

I Was There:

Station Information:

Freq: 97.9 MHz
Power: 79,000 Watts ERP
Height/DA: 440' AAT
City Of License: Long Beach, CA
TX Site: Signal Hill
Format: Soft Adult Contemporary

Owner: Pennino Music Co. (Jack Banoczi, President)
GMs: Jack Banoczi
CE: Paul Sakrison (PSBES)
PD: Madelaine Pennino
Engineers: Paul Sakrison Broadcast Engineering Services
Talent: Madelaine Pennino Vlasic, Dominic Vlasic, Mike Villani, Michael Moore ("Michael Harris"), Ed MacKay, A.J. Martin, Richard Navarro,
Sales Geeks:
Others: Jeanette Banoczi (Owner); Johanna Flores (Traffic), Tim Guebert,
Vehicles: None

KNOB Tower
The upper 8-bay ERI antenna was put up to replace a deteriorating Jampro. The ERI was replaced later with an ERI 1/2-wave 6-bay antenna fed by a new Harris FM-35k 35,000-watt transmitter.

KNOB Tower with Jampro Antenna
Pre-1980s picture of the tower on Signal Hill. The KNOB tower is on left.

KNOB Engineering Shop
Literally a closet, very vertical.

KNOB Microwave Racks
including STL transmitters, audio processing and remote control

KNOB was a grandfathered Class-B Superpower station transmitting 79,000 watts from a tower on Signal Hill, CA. I was their Contract Engineer from 1986 to 1990.

KNOB SMC DP-2 Automation System
with 6 ITC Reel Players, 5 SMC Cart Carousels, 3 ITC Delta Cart machines were added after this picture.

KNOB Control Room
Used for Live Assist on morning show and production work at other times

KNOB Production Studio 1
The main Production Studio

KNOB Production Studio 2
Teeny, in some space at the end of the hallway
. Used mostly for laying down voice tracks.

KNOB Harris FM-35K
Marked Serial #0003, this was the first FM-35K that went on the air in the world. Harris sent out their own engineers to noodle with it when we turned it on
. It worked fine as it turned out.

KNOB Collins 831G-2 20kW Backup Transmitter
Somewhat unstable, the boxes on the left and right were each 10kW
power amplifiers and the unit in the middle was 831D (1kW) that drove the power amps through a divider and trombone delay line. The grid on the left unit had to be retuned after about 12 hours from a cold startup. I was told it always did that.

Harris Engineers checking out the new FM-35K
We brought it up delicately, checking all readings as we went. It made it up to full power without incident
. It was very computerized and measured inlet and stack temperatures digitally. I suggested that they have excessive stack or inlet temperature shut down the rig a few months later after the air conditioning died and the room got up to 170 degrees Fahrenheit. It melted the phone, but the transmitter was fine...
KNOB had been the Jazz station for the Los Angeles market for many years, but struggled financially. Eventually its format was changed to a soft Adult Contemporary when it was purchased by Pennino Music Co. It was a family operation until it was sold in the early 1990s to Raul Alarcon and Spanish Broadcasting System.

---More coming---