How to start a Aircheck Collection:
First lets get to
basics real quick on what a Aircheck is.
Simply put its a recording of a broadcast Radio or TV station to be played back and enjoyed later.
Why do people record,
collect and trade Airchecks?
Most people who do this as a hobby are either a broadcast professionals or people who love Radio and TV or a particular station or an on air personally or show. Everyone does this for different reasons, to relive their youth, to see and hear what broadcast TV and Radio look/sounded like in years past, to hear what a station sounds like in a different state/country etc...
How to start a
collection? (for this instance it's for Radio)
First you need some way to capture the Radio stations audio, while I like to use Cassette tapes, most people new to this hobby are using more Digital means to record their Airchecks. If you are doing it the old-fashion way like me with cassettes, you will need to get your hands on a Boom-box or a stereo with a Cassette player/recorder. Example you will also need Cassette tapes. Example Most use 90 minute cassette tapes to record their aircheck onto.
How to Aircheck a
When you have the above pieces of equipment take the cassette tape and put it into the radio's cassette player/recorder. Then turn on the radio to the desired band AM/FM and station, Example if you live in Atlanta Georgia and you want to record NPR 90.1 WABE-FM you would turn your radio to 90.1 FM. Make sure you have a CLEAR static free signal before you start recording. In most cases moving the radio around the room or another part of the house works best as well as making sure your FM antenna is extended fully (if you are recording a AM station make sure your radio is away from other electronic devices like TV's, other radio's, touch/dimmer lamps, light switches, and florescent lights).
If you are using a 90 minutes tape, the time to record is 45 minutes (each side) you will need to be nearby so when the first side has run out of room you can then flip the tape over and continue to record to fill up the other side of the tape. After you are done recording and the tape is full take the tape out of the radio and use the labels that came with the tape to label what you just recorded. most people will label their tapes like. (NPR 90.1 WABE-FM July 15, 1997, 5:30pm) it's always important to label your Airchecks, what you just recorded, the station, and the Date, and Time.
Now the perfect aircheck collector will always record things they don't care for, say you don't like country music, it's always a good idea to at least have some country stations recorded just in case the person you are wanting to trade with does, especially if that person has an Aircheck in their collection you really want the chances of them wanting to trade with you goes up when you do this.
When you have a aircheck in your collection that some one wants you will need a way to copy that Aircheck to a blank cassette tape unless you intend on sending them the original tape. You will need a Dual Cassette Player/Recorder to do this Example.
One more important thing about trading, IT IS MUTUAL that means when you promise you are going to send them a copy of your Aircheck DO IT.