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Letter: Michael Bolton and Workbench

Thoughts on audio over-compression and the value of tech tips

As always, Workbench is my “first read” in every RW issue. I learn something new, confirm stuff I already know or get a chuckle.

I still fondly recall John Bisset’s presentation at SBE Chapter 22 in Liverpool many years ago. I almost wore out my hand taking notes. My favorite tip involved “black double-knit fabric”!

In reference to the column “How Michael Bolton Can Be 300 Times Worse” in the Sept. 16 issue:

That YouTube demo by “Nickd2011” of MP3 over-compression revealed the standard’s shortcomings. The artifacts were horrific!

I used to record my church services in MP3 until I heard a few “sour” organ notes, then switched to 44.1/WAV, which was noticeably-better. (Any necessary MP3 conversions from Audacity are done post-editing.)

Meanwhile your generator maintenance mentoring will yield large dividends for our “newbies” whose only experience with “backup power” is usually a UPS.

Good familiarity with “heavy tech” can save time and money; diligent recordkeeping may seem “overkill” but I’ve learned from years of transmitter work that it may reveal slow trends towards pending failure, and knowing what to tell the service person on the ‘phone can often ensure better site reliability or quicker restoration.

Again, thanks, John!

[Read recent Workbench columns.]