Recently I received a copy of a new book that I would like to recommend to you. It is called National Association of Broadcasters Engineering Handbook - 10th Edition. Authored and edited by Graham Jones, Dave Layer, Thomas Osenkowsky, and Edmund Williams, this not-so-little jewel has 2072 pages and weighs 11 lbs. (yes, I actually weighed it). It is published by the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) under the Focal Press banner, a division of Elsevier. My initial reaction was that I don't have much to do with broadcast standards or technology, but after I read the book I found it was a fabulous reference on electronics, wireless, and communications in general.
The book is divided into nine major sections. Section 1 covers the electromagnetic spectrum and various related regulations and frequency allocations. Wave propagation is also reviewed. Standards for analog and digital radio are summarized as well as those for analog and digital TV. The worldwide standards are also given. Other pieces cover digital audio and video practices. Lots of this detail is hard to find elsewhere.
Section 2, covering management and safety issues is a snoozer. I did not spend much time on this section but it does cover electrical shock, exposure to RF, and disaster planning and recovery if you are interested.
Section 3 umbrellas pretty much all aspects audio technology and provides a rundown them. Topics include acoustics, microphones, recording practices and equipment, digital audio compression, and telephone and remote connections.
Section 4 covers radio transmission technology. All that you ever wanted to know about AM and FM radio systems is presented, including AM stereo, AM and FM antenna systems, FM stereo and the SCA, and the RDS system. The new digital HD systems based on the IBOC method are also included. Great chapter.
Section 5 is related to video production and technology. Here you can bone up on light, cameras, video switching, video compression and recording, video servers and all the related products equipment, formats and standards. The book includes rarities like TV weather radar systems, TV graphics, lighting, audio for digital TV, film issues, and closed captioning systems. Where else can you get this info?
Section 6 dives into TV transmission. TV transmitters for analog and digital systems are discussed, and antenna and transmission lines are covered in detail. This section also discusses things like cable TV and digital satellite TV.
Section 7 covers broadcast towers—a huge part of broadcast stations. Section 8 provides signal measurement and analysis methods. Finally, Section 9 covers AC power, grounding, and standby power systems.
I love this book. It is a superior reference and good source for hard to find subjects related to broadcasting. If you want a good reference for your shelf rather than Googling everything, this one to consider. It serves the subject area well and is a great summary and reference in general—a bona fide one-stop-shop.
The price is $199.95 which is a bargain given the size and content of this winner.