Although Coop was writing for and publishing the American
Ionospheric Propagation Association (AIPA) monthly 'journal' from 1954 (at age 16
with several hundred subscribers), his first 'major' publication would be in the
June 1956 edition of 'Popular Electronics'. Within months he had been
engaged by the Hugo Gernsback publication 'Radio Electronics' to create
their regular column feature "TV DXing" (later enlarged to ("TV-FM
DXing"). The "VHF-UHF Column" for Western Radio Amateur
quickly followed (jumping ahead two+ decades Coop inaugurated "The New
Frontier/ World above 1 Gig" for QST in March 1979 through May
A group creating The Old CATV Equipment Museum (http://theoldcatvequipmentmuseum.org)
has begun the process of web posting what could
eventually include more than 20 of his books plus thousands of his magazine
articles, and even their early material NOW available includes all of his
as-editor major publications between 1974 and 1987 (note: this includes CATJ
/ Community Antenna Television Journal, CSD / Coop's Satellite Digest,
CSD-2 and CJR / Cooper-James Report). These same publications are
also available on this web site on DVD (JV003/4); go to order form here.
From 1956 through 2011 Coop created more than 30,000,000
'published' words (and several hundred hours of professional television). The
near-term challenge here is for as much of this to be 'webbed' for worldwide use
as possible. Beyond the now-available CATJ-CSD-CSD2-CJR archives only a
mouse-click away, initial emphasis is being placed on recreating DXing
Horizons, Television Horizons, and Video Communications Journal
- Coop's original (1960 onward) 'trade publications' for the television
You might enter
a go-to site favorite and future use; it is an ever-expanding resource. His (he
suggests) "final book" has been in process from 1990 (a working title of 'TELEVISION:
How it infected all of our lives') built around hundreds of one-on-one
personal interviews (from Zworykin to Arthur [C. Clarke]), more than 4,500
printed publications covering 1920-2011, an estimated 50,000 page-by-page copied
documents from FRC/FCC archives, 600 hours of Coop-created edited and 'raw'
videotape, and a collection exceeding 12,000 still photos shot and collected
between 1954 and 2011. Volunteers gratefully accepted (for an example of how
'volunteers' can assist, see Simon Winchester's "The Surgeon of Crowthorne").
Finally, the images to follow are from an
early-September (2011) 'status' of the under construction "Coop's Chronicles"
web site from The CATV Old Equipment Museum; an ever changing and enlarging
effort (with credit to creator Neal McLain).
|The Old CATV
|Robert B. "Coop" Cooper Jr. is one of the unsung
heros of the CATV industry. During his career, he has been an
amateur radio operator, RF engineer, CATV equipment manufacturer, association
CEO-by-default, journalist, videographer, novelist, and CATV
system operator. As an RF engineer and equipment manufacturer,
he founded and ran CADCO, the Community Antenna Development
Company, an early manufacturer of CATV headend and distribution
equipment. As a journalist, he has been an effective voice on
behalf of small CATV operators and the home satellite community,
documenting industry news with pointed political analysis and
detailed technical explanations. As a CATV operator, he built
and operated several 12-channel systems in California during 1960s, at a time when solid-state
amplifiers were just being introduced.He now owns Far North
Cablevision, in Mangonui, New Zealand.
Bob Cooper in 1970
||Underlying all of these activities, Coop is a writer. He has
written and published numerous journals, technical articles, novels,
and memoirs. And he's still writing today, documenting the history
of the CATV and home satellite industries. His most recent
publication, C-Band Remembered: Home Satellite TV Pioneer
Memories, is now in print (see ad at left).
Other publications of note are listed below. Coop urgers
readers to give "serious thought" to ordering
Television's Pirates: Hiding behind your picture tube.
Community Antenna Television Journal
• CSD: Coop's Satellite Journal
• CJR: Cooper James Report
Coop published these journals between 1974 and 1987
for the cable TV and home satellite industries. Scans of
the complete set are available
• CATV System
Management & Operation. TAB Books, 1966.
• CATV System Maintenance. TAB Books, 1967.
According to Coop, CATV System Management is
apparently the first-ever "how to" book describing how to
create, build, and operate a Community Antenna Television
system. It went to 5-plus printings and introduced
thousands to the concept of CATV. CATV System
Maintenance expanded on keeping a system functioning
(solid state was new in those days). These books describe
12-channel CATV systems Coop had constructed in California
at a time when Pacific Bell would not grant pole-attachment
agreements. As a result, Coop's Valley Vision system set
more than 3,000 of their own 25- to 35-foot poles.
These books are out of print, but they occasionally
appear on Amazon as "used and collector" items.
• Television's Pirates: Hiding behind your
picture tube. ______, 2006.
From primitive rooftop and rabbit-ear aerials through to
cable and satellite TV, it's 'pirates' who have been at the
forefront of pushing the technology. —Ken
Schaffer, in a review posted at
• C-Band Remembered: Home Satellite TV
Pioneer Memories. ______, 2010.
Just published ― see ad at left.
• Portobello One,
• Portobello Two, ________, 19__.
• Portobello Three, ________, 19__.
Coop's account of life in Providenciales, Turks &
Caicos Islands, at a time of rapid development and social
Coop's personal website, a memoir in itself.
The backstory behind Coop's Portobello series.
For a more complete list of Coop's publications, see