Reinhard E. Wagner worked in the IT, AV, broadcast, video and production industries for more than 45 years. He is the former Editor-in-Chief for FKT, a role he held for over a decade and was also a regular German correspondent for TVBEurope.
He sat down and talked to us about the changes he personally experienced during his career, and how the step from analogue to digital was huge with the enhancements it to the quality of video and audio.
Since 1998 Reinhard worked independently as a freelance journalist, author, and consultant in the field of pre/post production, reporting on technical innovations in the video and broadcast environment, describing content/asset management tools, presenting servers and storage technology, and testing computer and software network technology. Today, he focuses on his passions for art and travel, running a travel blog since 2015 and sketching on a regular basis.
What did you study?
RF technician, Senior Engineer
When did you start working and where?
Back in August 1970 as an apprenticeship training in Bonn
In which field?
Radio-, TV- and VTR maintenance and repair
Which knowledge gaps did you experience back then?
Back then there were many knowledge gaps to fill!!! Different technologies changed and for each shift, they were coexisting:
radio tubes and transistors; transistors and IC technology; analogue and digital; tape technology and HDD; HDD and Solid State Drives; memory sticks and SSD; Hardware based editing (VTR/VTR) and SW based editing on dedicated mainframes; analogue and digital audio (uncompressed); analogue video and digital video (uncompressed); uncompressed and compressed video; PAL/SECAM/NTSC and 601 digital video; SDTV and HDTV; TV tubes and LCD/Plasma/LED displays.
How did you fill these gaps?
I filled the gaps as best I could through self-research and self-studies. I also undertook several training courses. Exchanging ideas and obtaining feedback and advice from colleagues, tutors and coaches were crucial to building my awareness and knowledge.
Exchanging ideas and obtaining feedback and advice from colleagues, tutors and coaches were crucial to building my awareness and knowledge. Click To Tweet
Talk about your first technical challenge
My first technical challenge was the start at a broadcasting station because I went from the reception side to the transmitting site. To learn about encoding and decoding meant a lot at that time, especially when the implementation of digital equipment in an analogue environment took place. At that time, I started presenting and writing papers at SMPTE and FKTG conferences, so that others could learn from my experience in the field.
Share your passion for technology
Technology is my hobby and my life – spending time and learning new things is not a burden but a must.
Share your vision concerning any tech enhancement, future revolution
The step from analogue to digital was huge and brought enhancements to the
quality of video and audio. The introduction of different digital compression
standards, which are often incompatible, makes life in a broadcast/production
environment hard. I would very much appreciate when there could be one
standard/solution for all.
The step from analogue to digital #TV was huge and brought enhancements to the quality of #video and #audio. Click To Tweet
What’s your personal motto?
Never be afraid to face a challenge!