by Jerry Vigil
As the debate on the future of DAT continues, stations that have taken the bold step to all DAT undoubtedly will have many eyes upon them. R.A.P. checked in with Kevin Clark, Production Director for the "All DAT Gold" WMTR-FM, to find out how the machines are holding up and to get some insight into DAT in production.
"It's going great so far," says Kevin. "They work fine, the sound quality is great, and the receivership by the listeners is unbelievable." WMTR heavily promotes their all DAT format, even to the point of answering the phones with a reference to the DAT format.
A DAT machine is even taken out on remote broadcasts to educate the listeners and further promote this new format that has penetrated Toledo's airwaves.
As far as DAT in production, the station uses 3 DAT machines in their production studio. All of their custom client jingles from TM Productions are sent on DAT. Commercials and promos are mixed down to DAT, and DAT masters of all spots and promos are kept on file.
Problems? Kevin reports that keeping the machines cool is very important. Coasters were placed between the 4 decks in the control room, which are stacked on top of each other, to keep them cool. Also, all the jingles (70+ cuts) used on the air are kept on one cassette. The "jingle" cassette is moved to a different machine at the start of each jock shift. Apparently, some problems with condensation and "oiliness" occur if a cassette is kept in one machine for too long.
The machines in use are modified Sony DTC-1000's. The modifications were made by Radio Systems, Inc., and included complete remote functions and larger buttons for the "DAT Jockeys"