Then there are the guys who distribute phase-coherent millimeter wave LOs for hundreds of meters over fiber optics, and when they can't buy a mixer at Mini-Circuits that does what they want, they grow one from a freakin' crystal. Those guys all seem to end up at NRAO, even though there's no money in radio astronomy and even less glory.
Probably because it's the kind of environment that values damn-good research above all else, be it in RF, astrophysics, astrochemistry or even in IT (where I work). I've gone from job-hopping every 3-18 months at my previous employers to staying at NRAO for 6 years now. And every year at the annual service awards presentation they give out 30 or even 40-year service awards. Sure, there's no money in astronomy and our budget is projected flat for the next what... 5 years or something, but even with that people like it here and stick around.
Proof (IMO) that you can develop and sustain a great R&D culture on a limited budget!