Broadcast Legends Celebrate FM Stereo’s Half-Century Milestone At 131st AES Convention Special Event

NEW YORK: On Friday evening, Oct. 21 a panel of legendary FM Radio engineers gathered at the Clear Channel Studios in the PC Richards & Son Theater in lower Manhattan to celebrate a half century of FM Stereo. The event was a highlight of the 131st AES Convention held earlier this month at NY’s Jacob Javits Convention Center.
Developed by the New York Section of the AES and by AES Convention Broadcast/ Streaming Events Co-Chair David Bialik, the panel was Co-chaired by Bialik and Scott Fybush of Fybush.com / Inside Radio. Participants included such iconic broadcast figures as: Richard Burden, an original member of the FM Stereo Committee; Frank Foti, Omnia Audio; Richard Mertz, Cavell and Mertz; Arno Meyer, Belar; Robert Orban, Orban; Skip Pizzi, NAB; Bill Sacks, Orban; Eric Small, Modulation Sciences; Jeff Smith, Clear Channel; and former WQXR Radio Chief Engineer, Herb Squire.

Topics covered by the event included: FM stereo’s birth; the merits of the competing systems that sought FCC approval; the initial technical challenges faced by the new medium; the development of high-density FM audio processing; and, the future of analog FM stereo in an increasingly digital world.
As panelist Skip Pizzi noted in his closing remarks, “FM Stereo has outlived a host of highly-touted broadcast technologies.” And, as Bill Sacks pointed out, “FM Stereo is one of the few technologies that has become a world standard.”
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Pictured Rear: Eric Small, Richard Mertz, Skip Pizzi, Frank Foti, Herb Squire, Bob Orban, David Bialik. Seated: Bill Sacks, Richard Burden, Arno Meyer, Scott Fybush, Jeff Smith. Photo by Kim Sacks

The Audio Engineering Society was formed in 1948 by a group of concerned audio engineers. The AES counts over 14,000 members throughout the U.S., Latin America, Europe, Japan and the Far East. The organization serves as the pivotal force in the exchange and dissemination of technical information for the industry. For additional information visit http://www.aes.org

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