KPR Engineer Brings Vintage Mic Stand Back to Life
In an effort to preserve parts of the station's rich history, KPR Production Engineer Chuck Smith recently repaired a vintage Starbird Model 180 studio boom microphone stand back to its former glory.
Originally manufactured in the 1950s, this microphone stand had been in KPR's possession since the early days of the station, along with several others of its kind. Smith believes the others were likely destroyed in the University of Kansas Hoch Auditorium fire of 1991, where at the time KANU stored a considerable amount of archival material.
George Starbird originally created this model of microphone stand in the 1940s after opening his radio part manufacturing corporation in Los Angeles, Calif. Designed for large broadcast environments, the music and recording industries soon discovered its impressive motion and sound-capture abilities, and it quickly became the microphone stand of choice in major recording settings. The original model was in production until 1970, after which Starbird's Meletron Corporation set its sights on other projects. Iterations of the Model 180 continue to be created to this day by other companies, with the same range of motion and performance abilities of the original still in mind.
This surviving microphone stand will enjoy a new life at the KPR station thanks to Smith's dedication to preserving a part of the station's and recording's history.