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RF Shorts: Other Items of Interest – Nov. 24, 2009

Keithley Instruments is selling its RF product line to Agilent Technologies. Neither Web site had information on the sale, but a Santa Rosa Press Democrat article Agilent acquires Keithley division in Santa Rosa said Keithley will sell its RF product line to Agilent for $9 million. The article said all workers at Keithley's RF design center near the Charles M. Schultz-Sonoma County Airport had been offered jobs with Agilent's Santa Rosa-based Electronic Measurement Group. Keithley sells some interesting RF products, including a vector signal analyzer and RF vector signal generator.

I've reported on some of EDN Senior Technical Editor Brian Dipert's stories about receiving off-air DTV at his Nevada home in his "Thin-Air ATSC" blog. Last week he posted a report on lack of reception at a lower elevation in the article Thick-Air ATSC: A Dearth of Reception Leaves Me Feeling Uneasy. Dipert tested a variety of tuners and two indoor antennas at a friend's house with no success. The antennas he picked where not ones I would have chosen. I wonder if the results would have been different with an antenna like the Winegard SS-3000 positioned to avoid interference from electrical devices in the house. Take a look at his blog, if for no other reason than to read about his encounter with a completely clueless Radio Shack employee, whom he quotes as saying "Both UHF and VHF are irrelevant with ATSC..." Readers' comments on the DTV transition are also interesting.

Doug Lung is one of America's foremost authorities on broadcast RF technology. He has been with NBC since 1985 and is currently vice president of broadcast technology for NBC/Telemundo stations.