CG-3 mobil unit
Above: WMAQ-TV color mobile unit CG-3

WMAQ-TV has four color mobile units of three distinct types developed by the station engineering staff. The first filled the need for a compact videotape unit that could move into the field on a moment's notice. It was constructed in a Ford Econoline Window Van, equipped with a TR-5 tape recorder and a 5KW generator to power equipment, air conditioning and lighting. Early in 1967 is was equipped with a Cohu three-videcon color camera, which has been modernized with plumbicons. There is a second unit of the same size equipped with a Norelco PCP Backpack portable camera.

The station's third remote unit, designated as CG-3, was designed as a major facility with complete capability for network sports coverage, one of the most demanding program requirements today. The unit is in two parts, each a 35 foot semitrailer custom built by WMAQ-TV. The A unit, or control unit is the production center on wheels, and the B unit acts as a carry-all for cameras and other equipment, and includes a videotape room. The A, or control unit, is airconditioned by two four tone units, which can also be used for heating. The monitor housing contains 16 moonochrome and two color monitors. There are consoles for the technical director and director, a technical supervisor and associate director. The unit has five Norelco PC-70 color cameras with facilities for a sixth. Video from the cameras is routed to an auxiliary switching of a 22 in and 10 out INC relay crossbar, with SCR controlled overlay switching. The main switching system is a relay type, basically a two bus switcher which offeres a total of 29 different wipes, spotlight, additive and non-additive mix and insert effects.

The audio installation is built arounf 10 four channel remote amplifiers, providing facilities for 32 microphone inputs. It has three basic systems of communications---interrupted feedback, studio address, cue, squawk box and interphone and Telco PL. Each has a different function for production and intercommunication connecting all personnel at a remote location. The B unit of CG-3 also contains facilities for crew comfort and sanitation.

WMAQ-TV's fourth remote unit, CG-4, represents an expansion of the first two tape units. It is a two TK-44A plumbicon camera unit with its own engine generator for power, heat, etc. The chassis and body was custom built. The console contains the entire electronics and control head of a Grass Valley Switcher, with 12 input, preset and program buses with outbar and flip-flop switching. It also includes two special effects buses and a special effects package. The mobile unit is designed to be readily stripped so the equipment can be moved into a building.

Return to the 1970 WMAQ-TV tour

Introduction and main index to this site
WMAQ radio history | "Amos 'n' Andy" | "Fibber McGee and Mollie" | "The Breakfast Club"
Dick Kay | Television at the Merchandise Mart | 1970 television facilities tour | Channel 5 turns 20
The "Chicago School" of television | "Kukla, Fran and Ollie" | Dave Garroway | Mary Hartline
"Lights Out" | Sound effects | 1930 studio tour | WLS | "Empire Builders" | Barry Bernson
Floyd Kalber | The Queen of Love and Beauty | "Today's Children" | Staff announcers | Carol Marin
Ron Magers | Studs Terkel l "Chicago Tonight" | Channel 5 News scrapbooks |Roger Miller recalls
Zoo Parade | Clifton and Frayne Utley | Val Press | Len O'Connor | Johnny Erp | Bill Ray | Daddy-O
Experimental Television: 1930-1933 | Bob Deservi | Kermit Slobb | Ding Dong School | Quiz Kids
Bob Lemon | The Korshak Chronicles | KYW: The Chicago Years | WENR | O.B. Hanson | Renzo
Jack Eigen | Ed Grennan | The World's Best Cup of Coffee | Glenn Webster | Mr. Piano | Hawkins Falls
Chicago Television for Kids |
Radio Hall of Fame |The NBC News Night Report: 23 February, 1967
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