AFN equipment from the 1980s

The Headquarters AFN Europe used to be located in downtown Frankfurt am Main. That was where most shows originated from. The HQs AFN supplied the local AFN radio stations and transmitters with broadcasts, this was done by using special phonelines. Master Control was where the shows on vinyl, tape and satellite were put onto the network. When I was in Frankfurt in 1988 they showed me their new graphics computer which was their pride and joy. Radio wasn't computerized yet. Most records were played on a turn table, only the very often played songs were on short jingle tapes. All public service announcements were also on tape, and at SHAPE they showed me a jingle machine. Today all these machines would be hopelessly obsolete, but back in the 1980s they delivered us a lot of joy!

Clock

HQs AFN Master Control
Clock

Master Control is the very heart of AFN Europe. Where the radio stream would leave the AFN building to be transferred to the transmitters. Here they used to play records with prerecorded radio shows. Mind you, this was in 1988, today AFN uses a big satellite to download programming from America which is then broadcast on AFN Europe's radio and television stations.

Master Control

HQs AFN
Master Control

The radio shows originating from Master Control were delivered to the AFN affiliates by special telephone lines. You can see the turntables on the right which were used to play prerecorded radio shows on vinyl.

Graphics Computer

HQs AFN
computer

This computer was brand new when I made this photo of it.

Graphics Computer

HQs AFN
Graphics Computer

In 1988 I was shown the AFN graphics computer, which was used to make logos for in a corner of the screen, saying things like 'sports', or 'news'. Back then computers still were a novelty.

Jingle Machine

AFN SHAPE
Jingle Machine

The machine above is a jingle machine it makes sure that before for instance the news on the top of the hour the right jingle is played.

Automated Radio

AFN SHAPE
Radio by Tape

This is a 'one machine radio station' with long tapes which contained classical music.

TV Satellite Receiver

AFN SHAPE
Satellite TV Receiver

The photo to the right is a satellite TV receiver and this signal would be broadcast by AFN SHAPE TV.

TV Station

AFN SHAPE
TV Station

This is all the machinery needed to put AFN SHAPE TV on air.

TV Editing Machine

AFN SHAPE
TV Editing Machine

This machine is used for editing and producing locally made TV.