FastPipe Media » HDTV in Oklahoma

DTV Station Power Levels

I know that stations 4, 5, and 9 are operating at around 300,000 watts of power right now, which is extremely low, and I’m wondering what their plans are on ramping up that power to their allotted levels, how soon any upgrade is to occur, etc. At my location (Taloga, OK), I can receive KWET-DT in Cheyenne perfectly. The only OKC station that is receivable is 4, and it has a few dropouts but is receivable 99% of the time. KSBI comes in once in a while in the morning, and 9 only lights up my cable system processing equipment once in a great while, not receivable at all.

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7 Comments

  1. Posted January 13, 2004 at 2:33 pm | Permalink

    I think what cable systems in Oklahoma need is a group that can talk with management and engineers at the local stations. Management, in particular, needs to know that until they’re broadcasting at something approaching full power, the local cable outlets can’t offer their HD signals to rural customers.

    This is one reason I believe Cox in Stillwater doesn’t have an HD package. They can get stuff off satellite, but the local channels require more effort because there isn’t a fiber connection to rural towns like there is in Oklahoma City and Tulsa.

    But I expect all of this to be worked out in time… 🙂

    Dennis

  2. Posted January 13, 2004 at 7:16 pm | Permalink

    Is ggore correct in his assertion that the OKC affiliates are broadcasting at something less than their full authorized power?

    I hope so. That would mean that there is still hope for better signal strength for me here in southwest Stillwater.

    However, I believe I remember seeing other postings on this web site in the past few weeks stating that the stations ARE broadcasting at their full authorized power already.

    As of Sunday night (the last night I took readings after I adjusted my in-attic antenna and signal amplifier setup), I was getting something like 84% for KOCO, 90% for KFOR, 91% for OETA’s OKC affiliate, and 84% for KWTV (with a lot of fluctuation on all of them, at times).

    I guess I shouldn’t be greedy, but I’d like to see signals consistently in the low 90s. If the stations will, indeed, boost their power in the future, maybe there’s hope, yet.

    Anyone know?

  3. ggore
    Posted January 14, 2004 at 9:31 am | Permalink

    The only station I could get to respond to email or phone calls was KFOR. Their engineer (BobAblaugh {sp?}, an extremely interested and helpful guy) told me that they are broacasting around 350,000 watts. From other research I’ve done, KOCO is at the same level and 9 is at 400,000 watts. KOCO’s DTV antenna is at a much lower level on their tower than their analog, which makes their coverage area far less than the other stations. This is because they can’t interfere with KSWO channel 7 in Lawton. All stations in OKC will be at or above 1 million watts eventually, I would just like to know what their ramp-up schedule is.

    There is no trade group in Oklahoma for the cable industry, unfortunately, everything has to be done on a one-on-one basis. Quite a few rural cable operators are inerested in some sort of state-wide fiber network to make sure DTV signals are available in the areas that are now served by analog signals, since several of the DTV stations will not be able to cover their current areas with the new signals.

  4. Posted January 14, 2004 at 6:57 pm | Permalink

    ggore–

    Thanks for the excellent info.

    Question (for you or anyone): When KOCO starts broadcasting at full power, even with their digital antenna at a lower location on their antenna, won’t their signal interfere with Lawton’s channel 7 at that time?

    I’m quite surprised the FCC assigned an OKC station (KOCO) a license to broadcast on a channel (7) already being used by another station (KSWO) not all that far away in the same state.

    Interesting . . . one would think that KSWO would have objected to that.

  5. Hamflyer
    Posted January 15, 2004 at 9:16 am | Permalink

    According to the FCC web site KOCO-DT is transmitting at an effective radiated power of 47,000 Watts. Because this channel is VHF (instead of UHF) a lower power signal will have comparable coverage to 400,000 W on UHF. See http://www.fcc.gov/fcc-bin/tvq?call=KOCO-TV

  6. ggore
    Posted January 15, 2004 at 9:35 am | Permalink

    Thanks for the info, Hamflyer, the plots match what I had seen in FCC documents earlier. From them it is clear that KOCO-DT and KOKH-DT will never be receiveable in western Oklahoma as they are now, due to KOCO-DT 7’s interference possibilities with KSWO-7 in Lawton and KOKH-DT 24’s with KOMI-24 in Woodward. KOKH won’t be receivable NW, NE, or south of OKC, and KOCO won’t be receivable west or south of OKC.

    This is also probably why KOCO has ceased all contact with cable systems in western Oklahoma regarding retransmission consent lately. My customers will be thrilled to no they will be losing KOKH and KOCO after the transition…..NOT!!!

  7. anonymous
    Posted January 17, 2004 at 4:48 pm | Permalink

    ggore: Time Warner is considering WFAA-DT ch 9 (ABC) from Dallas using fiber. Our local ABC does not broadcast HD. Pryor to KCEN-DT ch 9 (NBC) startup, WFAA was easily received using high VHF antenna array 50 meters up. FCC permitted KCEN move to 9. When analog WFAA 8 turns off they plan to move DT to 8, solving our problem. Here in Waco Time wienie is 100 km from Dallas antenna farm.
    KSWO did complain to FCC about perceived interference. KSWO 7 will eventually turn off, opening the door for KOCO-DT 7.
    I love reading your stuff, as i’ve studied the cable industry since 1968. Good luck to you western operators.

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