I am so glad I took up yoga, because it turns out that if I stand on one leg in the middle of the living room, with my left hand holding my right ear and my spine slightly arched, the A's broadcast comes in clearly for at least the next 10 minutes. Unfortunately, "downward facing dog" turns Vince Cotroneo staticky and Ken Korach appears to be highly irritated if I try to run the washer or dryer during his innings.
Where did KTRB get its 50,000 watts? Was it:
a. At a garage sale.
b. From a guy named Joseph who said to call him Ralph, and whose cell phone number is disconnected.
c. From Dyslexic Circuit City, "Where Service is State of the Rat" and all the towers they sell are 00500 watts.
d. xxcccchhhhh ssschchchcxxxchchchch ring him up strrkkkchchchch $%#$kkxalled!
As I understand it, KTRB's issue is not wattage so much as it is too many stations too nearby that broadcast on or near the 860 AM frequency. This causes the station not to come in clearly, or at all:
- When you drive under any power line
- When you drive in a tunnel
- When the weather changes in any way
- When anyone in the same room as the radio moves
And as if the basic reception weren't bad enough, no matter how you position the radio or youself the signal constantly surges and fades to the point of driving a person crazy. Piping KTRB into a hostage situation would actually work well even when Ray Fosse wasn't conducting an interview. ("Jim, how terrible do you feel, knowing that fans are looking forward to all day to hearing the A's radio broadcast, only to have the experience severely compromised by a lousy signal that reminds listeners of KALX's 10-watt signal back in 1979?")
THE SEARCH FOR SOLUTIONS
Here is where I am hoping the community can offer some answers, ideas, or both. I'll start with my planned Monday quests.
On Monday morning, I am visiting an antenna guru or two to see if there are ways I can improve KTRB's reception at least in my Berkeley home. I am willing to spend some money because this is extremely important to me. My thought is that perhaps if I put a good antenna on the roof, pointing towards KTRB's tower, reception might improve. However, I am not even certain how much a good antenna can improve AM reception that is being interfered with by other AM stations - a good antenna might help KTRB come in clearer but it will also help KGO (810-AM) to come in clearer, which is not good.
I am also planning to call KTRB on Monday to try to speak to someone who is knowledgeable about the station's signal. My recollection is that when the agreement between the A's and KTRB was announced, we heard that plans were in the works for KTRB to boost its signal, in some way, in the near future. Does anyone know or remember exactly what was said, and whether any improvements are forthcoming on KTRB's end?
What Can Fans Do?
Those of you who are especially savvy with regards to electronics, please advise: What can a fan do to help the signal come in as strongly and consistently as possible? Is Poochini barking up the wrong tree looking at antennae? Are there other avenues we KTRBeasts should be exploring? Any help is appreciated.
One thing I know fans can do is to tell KTRB that they care, that the problem is real and impactful, and that there is some urgency to the situation. I'm not sure how much KTRB can do, on its end, because so much is restricted and dictated by the FCC, but it can only help to underscore the depth, and immediacy, of this issue.
Something's gotta give, and I'm hoping that between this awesome community and KTRB - both of whom want the same thing - something can. Help!