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Radio Latina and Radio Uno, Peru

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The following item is taken from Relampago DX #109 (July 1999) by Takayuki Inoue Nozaki. It is placed here with permission.

Por las Rutas del Perú (24) ...

RADIO LATINA

I visited Chiclayo for the second time in late December of 1994. During my stay I noticed that some new stations were operating on the medium wave and FM bands. After checking the official broadcasting list "Sistema de Radiodifusión Sonora" issued by the Ministry of Transports and Communications, I learned that several of these newcomers had already applied for radio broadcasting licenses authorizing them to transmit on provisional frequencies. The rest of the new stations were apparently transmitting illegally without licenses.

I first discovered Radio Latina, one of the unlicensed broadcasters in Chiclayo, during a band scan made on December 27, 1994. The station announced that it was transmitting on 1070 kHz AM and that it was broadcasting experimental transmissions on shortwave in the 60 meter band. I actually heard the medium wave outlet on the odd frequency of 1072.5 kHz. I monitored the shortwave broadcasts and found that they were being transmitted outside the 60 meter band. I was able to hear Radio Latina's signal around 4575 kHz. However, it frequently drifted up and down in a frequency range of about 5 kHz, and this made it quite difficult to listen to the shortwave broadcasts even in Chiclayo. The station carried an independent shortwave broadcast during the early morning hours in which there was an ordinary Andean folklore music program with greetings directed to listeners in the northern departments of Peru. With the exception of this early-morning transmission, Radio Latina broadcast its programs simultaneously on shortwave and medium wave.

On Wednesday, December 28, 1994, I tried to find the studios of Radio Latina. I had heard its address announced on the air as "Avenida Saenz Peña No. 1558" in the center of Chiclayo. I had no difficulty finding the station's studio building, on the front of which was a metal plate bearing the same street number. Radio Latina's studios were located in an ordinary one-story house which looked like a private residence. There was nothing whatsoever about the building which indicated that it was the site of a radio station. Thus, there was no billboard, and there was no antenna on the roof. I rang the doorbell several times, but it was apparently broken and nobody came to the door. I then knocked on the closed door. Shortly thereafter a middle-aged gentleman opened the door and asked me what I wanted. I asked him if Radio Latina's studios were in the house. Looking at me suspiciously, he said that there was no radio station there. However, I could hear a disk jockey announcing advertisements with high-volume music effect, and these sounds were coming from inside the house. It was obvious to me that the man at the door thought that I was an inspector for the Ministry of Transports and Communications. I had visited a great number of Peruvian broadcasters over the years, and I learned through these experiences that illegal stations were generally suspicious of unexpected visitors because of their fear of government raids.

I therefore made a quick decision. I showed him my passport identifying me as a private Japanese citizen, and I explained to the man at the door that I was engaged in a study of Peruvian radio stations and frequently visited these stations. I also asked him to call the station owner or general manager. However, the man at the door continued to treat me with suspicion. He said that nobody was here and asked me to return on another day. I persisted in my efforts, begging him to call anybody with whom I could speak for only a few minutes. I told him that I was leaving Chiclayo that evening in order to continue my journey to Cutervo. Consequently, it was impossible for me to come back on another day. These efforts finally had an effect. The man was still perplexed about my request but grudgingly admitted that this was Radio Latina. He permitted me to enter the building, but he still would not allow me access to any of the rooms in which the studios were located. I persevered in my efforts and talked to him about my hobby, giving him information about various shortwave broadcasters, including details about several of my friends working at stations, technical aspects about transmitters, etc. Finally he confessed that he was the station owner and introduced himself as Carlos Tiparra González. He told me that he had guessed that I was an inspector of the Ministry of Transports and Communications and had feared that I was making a raid on his station because of its illegal broadcasts on medium wave and shortwave.

He ushered me into the studio of Radio Latina, which was about three meters long and two meters wide, surrounded by plywood partitions with a window near the entrance. There were dozens of posters of well-known singers on these partitions. There were many cassette tapes displayed in an orderly manner on the partition rack, including a good collection of Peruvian music, commercial advertisements, station identifications and spots. The master control was equipped with a "Nippon Amerika" brand mixer (4 channel), a "Sony" microphone, two old turntables without brand names, two radio cassette decks, and a "Scala" brand audio processor. I was invited to participate in the morning music program, on which I was interviewed and asked about details of my country and also about my hobby of studying and visiting Peruvian radio stations.

"Radio Latina Empresa Individual de Responsabilidad Limitada" was established by Carlos Tiparra González, an electrical technician who had wide experience in manufacturing transmitters for broadcasters. Señor Tiparra had wanted to found his own station ever since his adolescence. On Saturday, January 30, 1993, Radio Latina began its transmissions on 1070 kHz medium wave with a home-brewed transmitter of 1 kW. The station claimed that its medium wave outlet transmitted on 1070 kHz. However, as previously-mentioned, my local monitoring in Chiclayo in late December of 1994 revealed that it was really broadcasting on 1072.5 kHz.

On December 20, 1994, Radio Latina commenced its experimental transmissions on shortwave in order to enlarge the service area and to reach more people living in the remote communities and villages in the Department of Lambayeque and in other neighboring departments. The shortwave outlet operated on the nominal frequency of 4580 kHz with a home-brewed transmitter of 0.5 kW, but in fact it was actually drifting between 4579.5 kHz and 4567.3 kHz due to technical problems.

As of December 1994, Radio Latina broadcast 19 hours of programming, including music shows, light entertainment, message service, international and national news, market information, and commentaries. The station transmitted at 0800-0300 on medium wave, and during two separate time slots (0800-1400V and 2100-0300) on shortwave. While the station was active on the air, its program schedule was as follows: 0800-1130 "Música Folklórica Vernacular", (0800-1100 "Amanecer Andino" on shortwave), 1130-1200 "Una Luz en Tu Camino", 1200-1300 "Reloj Musical", 1300-1400 "Música Mexicana", 1400-1630 "Música Chicha", 1630-1730 "Boleros Inolvidable", 1730-1900 "Noticiero Teletipo", 1900-2100 "Música Chicha", 2100-2200 "Cholo Berrocal", 2200-2300 "Sentimientos Ecuatorianos", 2300-2400 "Atardecer Ranchero", 0000-0100 "Sentimientos Peruanos", 0100-0200 "Por los Caminos del Ande", 0200-0300 "Música Folklórica Vernacular".

Radio Latina had a small provisional studio at the transmitter site situated in the Urbanización Simon Bolívar about 6 km north from studio. This separate studio was utilized to broadcast different programs on shortwave exclusively designed for campesino audiences living in rural regions. The independent shortwave programs were broadcast for two hours in the early morning at 0900-1100 daily. Unfortunately, I was unable to visit the provisional studio and transmitting equipment due to lack of time.

Radio Latina transmitted on shortwave for about one year, and was last heard in January of 1996. During my short stay in Chiclayo in late September of 1998, I learned that Radio Latina had ceased both its shortwave and its medium wave transmissions due to financial difficulties and had disposed of its equipment to other persons who were interested in the broadcasting business. After the disappearance of Radio Latina on the shortwave band, another new station identifying itself as Radio Gotas de Oro made its first broadcast from Chiclayo in the middle of May, 1996. At first this new station transmitted on a variable frequency of 4524 kHz. However, as many DXers in the world noted in February of 1997, Radio Gotas de Oro subsequently moved to the same general frequency range as that formerly used by Radio Latina. This newer station later changed its name to Radio Uno, and actually uses the same transmitter which was formerly used by Radio Latina. In this way, the transmitter's life has been prolonged due to its use by another broadcaster.

Identification texts

  • "Tú escuchas Radio Latina, tu nueva frecuencia."
  • "Desde Chiclayo para todo el territorio nacional, transmite Radio Latina."
  • "Desde la ciudad de Chiclayo, transmite para toda la Región Nor Oriental del Marañón, Radio Latina."
  • "Radio Latina transmite desde sus estudios ubicados en Avenida Saenz Peña 1558, telefóno 233140, desde Chiclayo, Perú."
  • "Tu estás en la sintonía de los 10-70 de amplitud modulada de Radio Latina con un nuevo imagen desde Chiclayo, Perú."
  • "Atención, mucha atención, se comunica nuestros oyentes en diferente parte del país que nos recepcionan, deben escribirnos ya sus cartas. Serán recepcionadas y a la vuelta del correo, estarán recibiendo un presente de Radio Latina. Sus cartas deben enviarlas a nuestros estudios ubicados en Avenida Saenz Peña 1558 en pleno centro de Chiclayo, a un costado de Coliseo Cerrado de Chiclayo. Radio Latina, con un nuevo imagen para todo el Perú."

Technical Information

1070 kHz: was equipped with a transmitter (1 kW) manufactured by Carlos Tiparra González, and a 1/4 wave vertical antenna (64 meters high above the ground). The nominal frequency was 1070 kHz, but in fact the medium wave outlet was measured on 1072.5 kHz.
4580 kHz: was equipped with a transmitter (0.5 kW) manufactured by Carlos Tiparra González, and a 1/2 wave dipole antenna (10 meters high above the ground). The nominal frequency was 4580 kHz, but the shortwave outlet was actually monitored in the frequency range between 4565.1 kHz and 4580.1 kHz.

Transmitter site: Urbanización Simon Bolívar, Provincia de Chiclayo, Departamento de Lambayeque, Perú.

Studio: Avenida Saenz Peña No. 1558, Chiclayo, Provincia de Chiclayo, Departamento de Lambayeque, Perú.

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RADIO UNO

In the middle of May of 1996, Radio Gotas de Oro, another new shortwave station transmitting from Chiclayo, was first logged on a variable frequency around 4524 kHz. The station claimed that it was broadcasting on 1430 kHz, medium wave, from its studios located at Calle Primero de Mayo No. 278, Urbanización Urrunaga, Distrito de José Leonardo Ortiz, in Chiclayo. Afterward, upon checking the official broadcasting list "Sistema de Radiodifusión Sonora" issued in January of 1997 by the Ministry of Transports and Communications, I learned that no stations were officially authorized to broadcast on 1430 kHz in the Department of Lambayeque. At the same time I also noted that "Radio Gotas de Oro" was not yet registered on the official list of provisionally-licensed stations. I could only draw the conclusion that the station was undoubtedly operating without a license both on shortwave and medium wave.

Subsequently, in February of 1997, Radio Gotas de Oro made its reappearance on a drifting frequency in the vicinity of 4566 kHz. The station was monitored on the same general frequency range between 4564.8 kHz and 4573.2 kHz on which Radio Latina had formerly transmitted. The frequency change was made either to avoid interference from Radio Horizonte (which transmitted from Chiclayo on the frequency range between 4505.0 kHz and 4505.1 kHz) or perhaps because of another technical problem. At any rate, the shortwave transmissions of Radio Gotas de Oro were widely noticed around the world soon after the move from 4524 kHz.

(Check my Peru Radio Graphics website for some great photos of Radio Uno.)

In early November of 1997, the station changed its name and began identifying itself as "Radio Uno, la diferente". The station announced that it was transmitting on 1430 kHz medium wave from its studios at "Calle Primero de Mayo No. 278, Urbanización Urrunaga, Distrito de José Leonardo Ortiz, Chiclayo," which definitely corresponded to the same address as that formerly announced by Radio Gotas de Oro. The station now identified itself with new slogans, including: "Porque somos la primera, somos Radio Uno, la diferente." and "Cambíate tú también, Radio Uno, la diferente."

In the course of my recent "DX research" journey to the northern Departments of Cajamarca and Amazonas, I made my third visit to Chiclayo in late September of 1998. On Wednesday, September 30, 1998, I decided to visit Radio Uno, one of the new shortwave stations which had never replied either to my reception reports or to my questionnaires. Relying on the address formerly mentioned on the air, I took a motorbike taxi to go to the station. This address was only about 10 minutes from the hotel in downtown Chiclayo, and it was easy to find the station facilities thanks to a tall steel antenna tower for medium wave and a dipole antenna for shortwave. There was no billboard, and the entrance was closed. I knocked on the door, and shortly thereafter a young girl answered. She appeared to be totally bewildered by the sudden visit of a foreigner. She told me that the building did not contain either the offices or the studios of Radio Uno, but she admitted that it did contain its transmitting plant. Naturally, I asked her if it was possible to show me the equipment. However, she stated that due to "security reasons" she was unable to comply with this request without the station owner's permission. Despite refusing me entry to the transmitting plant, she did give me the actual street address where Radio Uno's studio and office were located and at which I would be able to contact the station owner. I learned that the station's place of business was located in front of the central market, right in the center of Chiclayo. Therefore, I took another motorbike taxi to the central market.

Arriving at the central market, I easily found the studios of Radio Uno. The station was in a third story building which contained many general commercial stores and offices. One of the windows of the third floor was painted with the station name, the slogan and a beautiful illustration of a parabolic antenna. Upon my entry into the reception room, the secretary immediately recognized me from a photograph of myself and of my DX shack which I had enclosed with my reception report. The station facilities consisted simply of a reception room, an owner/director's office, an operations studio, and an announcer's cabin. The operating studio was equipped with a "ELTEC" brand console mixer (5 channel), a "Pioneer" CTW-2021 model cassette deck, a "Sony" brand cassette deck, a "Denkey" XRD-960 model amplifier, and two microphones. The station operators utilized cassette tapes as their main source of program material, and for this reason the station had no turntables.

"Radio Gotas de Oro Empresa Individual de Responsabilidad Limitada" was established by Plutarco Chamba Febres on December 8, 1995. The station began its transmissions on 1430 kHz with a 1 kW transmitter which was manufactured by a local electronic technician. The studio and office were originally set up at the same location as the transmitting plant at Calle Primero de Mayo No. 278, Urbanización Urrunaga, Distrito de José Leonardo Ortiz, in Chiclayo. At that time, Radio Gotas de Oro operated for 21 hours a day at 0800-0500 (i.e. 0300-2400 local time). In the course of my visits to Peru over the years, I have found that shortwave broadcasting has generally lost its commercial value in the coastal regions of that country and that few shortwave stations still exist in this area. However, this is not the case in the Department of Lambayeque. Chiclayo is geographically and commercially the most important gateway into the different provinces of northeastern Peru. Many campesinos visit Chiclayo to do business or to get temporary jobs, and they wish to communicate with their families who reside in the remote rural regions. These campesinos find it desirable to communicate with their family members via the shortwave broadcasts of stations located in Chiclayo. As has been monitored by Latin American DX enthusiasts, in recent years some commercial broadcasters began operating on shortwave in addition to their regular medium wave transmissions. These stations include Radio Horizonte, Radio Naylamp, Radio Frecuencia San José, Radio Latina, and Radio Nueva Sensación. For these reasons and possibly also for the owner's amusement, Radio Gotas de Oro also began its shortwave transmissions in May of 1996, utilizing the second hand transmitter of Radio Latina.

In October of 1996, Radio Gotas de Oro purchased a "Petrick" brand transmitter of 1 kW output power in order to produce high quality transmissions and to achieve major coverage. On September, 3, 1998, the medium wave outlet was officially licensed with the callsign OAU1R and was assigned to the frequency of 1280 kHz. According to my local monitor, it was actually measured on 1281.1 kHz. The shortwave outlet was not yet licensed as of September of 1998. After the station was legalized by the Ministry of Transports and Communications, the studio and office were moved to their current convenient location in front of the central market at Avenida José Balta No. 1480. The move to this more central location was made in order to attract the business of urban and rural listeners visiting for the purpose of trade and shopping. On November 1, 1997, the station changed its name to Radio Uno with the desire of becoming the number one broadcaster in Chiclayo.

Currently Radio Uno broadcasts simultaneously on the nominal frequency of 1280 kHz medium wave and on the nominal frequency of 4570 kHz shortwave, at 0900-0500 for 20 hours from Monday to Saturday, and 1100-0200 for 15 hours on Sunday. Listeners are divided into upper class (5%), middle class (40%) and lower class (55%). Women constitute 40% of the listening audience. Its programs may be classified and divided as follows: news and information constitute 10%, culture 5%, message and greeting service 15% and musical entertainment 70%. Musically speaking, these are the percentage categories: folklore 50%, tropical music 30%, pasillo 10%, and western music 10%. The station has its own original newscast called "Noticias Radio Uno" produced by César Cesoeres. It is broadcast at 1800-2000 (i.e. 1300-1500 local time) daily except for Sunday.

Radio Uno has been monitored in the widely drifting frequency range between 4559.2 kHz and 4573.5 kHz since the station changed its name from Radio Gotas de Oro. Thanks to a lot of reception reports from abroad, the station staff knows that the shortwave outlet has been constantly audible around the world and that its frequency has been unstable due to a technical problem. Plutarco Chamba Febres, the station owner and manager, is very interested in receiving reports and comments, and promised me that he would issue verification letters for all correct reports. The station has neither pennants nor stickers as gifts, but it would be pleased to send greetings to reception reporters via its shortwave transmission.

Identification texts

  • "Cambíate tú también, Radio Uno, la diferente."
  • "No se quede, vacílate con Radio Uno, la diferente."
  • "Desde hoy y para siempre, Radio Uno, la diferente."
  • "Tú la elegiste y tú la consagraste Radio Uno, la diferente"
  • "Somos la única AM que hace temblar a la FM. Radio Uno, la diferente."
  • "En todo el norte, una sola respuesta de ganar, yo escucho Radio Uno, la diferente."
  • "En tu dial solo Uno, Radio Uno, la diferente. Siempre con Radio Uno, la diferente."
  • "Cuando te pregunten qué emisora escuchas, contestas correctamente Radio Uno, la diferente."
  • "Desde Chiclayo, Perú, nace una radio con mucho amor, una radio que te busca, te informa, te entretiene, es Radio Uno, la diferente."
  • "Radio Uno, la diferente, saluda nuestros oyentes en Piura, Huancabamba, Morropón, Chulucanas, Lagunas, Selva Buena, Ayabaca, Sicchez, Agurr, Colán, Huachumi, Jilili, Montero, Joras, y todo el Alto Piura. Radio Uno, la diferente."
  • "Radio Uno, la diferente, saluda nuestros miles oyentes que siempre están conectados a nuestra frecuencia en Mochumi, Túcume, Illimo, Pacora, Jayanca, Motupe, Olmos, Ferreñafe, Picsi, Mocupe, Chongoyape, Chiclayo, Pimental, Santa Rosa, Puerto Etén, Ciudad de Etén, Reque, Monsefú, y a todos otros miles oyentes en la Regíon Nor Oriental del Marañón. Radio Uno agradece tu sintonía y recuerda que somos Radio Uno, la diferente."
Full identification text
"Desde Chiclayo, capital de la amistad, transmite Radio Uno en 1430 kHz de la amplitud modulada. Radio Uno tecnología digital que apunta al futuro con cobertura internacional. Radio Uno en los 1430 de la amplitud modulada sonido llegando a todo el Perú. Radio Uno, únicamente diferencia total."

Opening announcement
"Amables oyentes, la Empresa Radial Gotas de Oro en los 12-80 kHz de amplitud modulada les da la bienvenida a su dulce programación. Llegamos a ustedes con información, entretenimiento, cultura y lo mejor de la música de nuestros días. Les invitamos a compartir con nosotros y participar de nuestra variada programación a cargo de un selecto plantel de profesionales en comunicación. Radio Uno les da los buenos días y un feliz amanecer. Radio Uno, la diferente"

Closing announcement
"Amables oyentes, la Empresa Radial Gotas de Oro en los 12-80 kHz de amplitud modulada les agradece de todo corazón por su sintonía dispensada y de haber compartido con nosotros de la dulce programación de Radio Uno, esperando haya sido de su completo agrado. Nos despedimos para retornar dentro de algunas horas en que estaremos nuevamente con ustedes con más música, entretenimiento, cultura e información, Radio Uno les agradece infinitamente de todo corazón. Que tengan dulces sueños y un alegre despertar. Radio Uno, la diferente."

Technical Information

OAU1R 1280 kHz: is equipped with a "Petrick" brand transmitter, TRX-1000 model (1 kW), and a 1/4 wave vertical antenna (55 meters high above the ground). The nominal frequency officially assigned to the station is 1280 kHz, but in fact the medium wave outlet was measured on 1281.1 kHz.
4570 kHz: is equipped with a transmitter (0.5 kW) manufactured by Carlos Tiparra González, and a 1/2 wave dipole antenna (20 meters high above the ground). While the transmitter was under the operation of Radio Latina, its nominal frequency was 4580 kHz. However, due to numerous reception reports from overseas listeners, the people working at Radio Uno are aware that the shortwave outlet is actually being heard on approximately 4570 kHz.

Transmitter site: Calle Primero de Mayo No. 278, Urbanización Urrunaga, Distrito de José Leonardo Ortiz, Provincia de Chiclayo, Departamento de Lambayeque, Perú. (It is situated at 06-45-00 L.S. and 79-48-43 L.W. and at 1.8 km north from the studio. The studio and the transmitter site are connected by a fixed telephone cable.)

Studio: Avenida José Balta No. 1480, 3er piso - oficina No.305, Chiclayo, Provincia de Chiclayo, Departamento de Lambayeque, Perú.

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Association of North American Radio Clubs
DXer of the Year for 1995
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