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Friday Feedback for February 21, 2014

Remember how in the last couple of weeks, we’ve had lots of compliments about various aspects of the station? Well, just when you think you’re flying high…


This is the other kind of Feedback.

Listener John wrote:

I live in Wilmington. Your broadcast has been stuttering for the last several weeks and very hard to listen to. What is going on?

We contacted John and determined that the issue was in the HD radio in his newer model car. When the HD and FM signals are not perfectly in sync and the HD signal fails, it does not gradually go away -- it immediately locks back onto the FM. If they are the tiniest bit out of alignment, the "skipping" phenomenon John mentions is a result. We'll try to tweak the signals to address this. In the long-term a power boost for the HD will address the problem, and that is part of our long-range plan.

Listener Aaron wrote to us last Sunday:

I enjoy tapping into the HD Classical feed while I'm working but I've discovered that the audio only plays out of my right speaker. Is this by design? This seems to be the only station that doesn't play full stereo.

It's definitely not by design. During last week's ice storm, we were adjusting our equipment as ice on the main antenna built up and we had to lower, then raise power. During one of those episodes it appears a connection was disconnected. Once we figured out the problem, the fix was easy. Many thanks to retired engineer John McHarry who helped us out with both of these problems.

Alva Sexton wrote:

I am soooo disappointed with your Jazz programming. Really, is this the best you can do? Why don't the announce the support[ing] musicians (Bass player, drum, etc.) and talk about the music.

Thank you for your comment, Alva. There's definitely a higher proportion of music to talk in our current Friday night lineup. Listeners – especially jazz listeners – what are your opinions?

Listener Nancy wrote:

Are we expected to memorize the content of the Radio Lab show about the smoker who talks about giving $5000 to the Ku Klux Klan? Right now our radio is presenting this to us for the fourth Sunday in a row. Does anyone on your staff EVER listen to WHQR? Jeff has contacted you about this very thing before and now he has just been resisting while counting just how many times you would run the show, but I'm not going to hold back: If you can't do it right, maybe you shouldn't do it at all… Other than this little quirk, I think the station is better than ever.

The least humiliating part of this episode is that we have now fixed the problem, thanks to Nancy and Jeff. Four weeks ago we switched over our automation system from the 15+ year old model we had been running (on its last legs) and went to an upgraded model. For the most part it went very smoothly and listeners noticed few problems. Obviously RadioLab is one program that should have updated itself automatically each week, but clearly has not.

We are very dependent on listeners like Nancy and Jeff to spot errors and contact us. Thank you.

OK, finally: Listener Mark from UNCW wrote:

I heard a rumor that you all are planning to have a classical music sister station soon. I think that is a great idea. I miss having a classical music station in Wilmington. I hope you can get this going soon!

Mark, it is more than a rumor; it is an announced part of that long-range plan I mentioned. We're continuing to wait on some FCC approvals, but we are raising money for this and other projects and working toward getting this done.

We’d love to hear from you on Friday Feedback. You can always leave a message via email to feedback@WHQR.org. Our Feedback Phone is 910-292-WHQR. That’s 910-292-9477. And thanks for your feedback.