How many AM's in your area have dropped HD?

IBOC, HD Radio, FM eXtra, DRM, Importers, Exporters, Exgines...digital radio spoken here!
LowBand
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How many AM's in your area have dropped HD?

Post by LowBand » Sun Aug 12, 2012 12:17 pm

We have had three AMers drop HD recently, one Class B 5kW regional and two Class D 1kW's.

Reasons were: 1) receivers and listeners: not enough listeners and economical HD radios, 2) technical: problems with exciters and sideband noise. The one Class B had continual problems with spurs about 30-45kHz above the assigned frequency.


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Re: How many AM's in your area have dropped HD?

Post by NECRAT » Sun Aug 12, 2012 12:31 pm

5 Built:
1) Owned by Radio Disney, when it was sold, RD kept the gear, shut down.
2) Old school AM engineer doesn't believe in anything digital, convinced corporate to shut the HD down.
3) Built for HD, sister to station #2. Spent one day on the air in HD.
4) On the air.
5) Owned by Rhode Island Public Radio, who had the large FCC protest against their FM and a 1st adjacent FM in Boston doing high level IBOC testing. So you can imagine the reasoning why it was shut off.
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Re: How many AM's in your area have dropped HD?

Post by BroadcastDoc » Sun Aug 12, 2012 5:44 pm

I believe the all three of the AM HD's here are still on.
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Re: How many AM's in your area have dropped HD?

Post by Deep Thought » Sun Aug 12, 2012 6:36 pm

I haven't checked lately but I think that WBBM (780-CBS), WGRB (1390-Clear Channel) and WVON (1690-Clear Channel) are the only ones left in Chicago running it. The others shut it down.
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Re: How many AM's in your area have dropped HD?

Post by Shane » Sun Aug 12, 2012 11:34 pm

I can't tell for sure from Omaha but it seems like WSCR hasn't been on in awhile. Here only 1 AM has put it on: KFAB. It was still on up to a few weeks ago but was down last week. Don't know yet if its permanent. It's a CC property so my guess is it's temporary.
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Re: How many AM's in your area have dropped HD?

Post by w9wi » Mon Aug 13, 2012 6:47 am

Only ever had two in Nashville. (WPLN-1430, WLAC-1510) WLAC dropped it some time ago.
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Re: How many AM's in your area have dropped HD?

Post by Muadeeb » Mon Aug 13, 2012 9:02 am

Only 3 left here:
620 KMKI (Disney, me)
1080 KRLD (CBS)
1270 KFLC (Univision)

Stations that have shut down:
KLIF (Cumulus)
KTCK (Cumulus, when they lost two towers)
WBAP (Off when Citadel)
KAAM
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Re: How many AM's in your area have dropped HD?

Post by Kent T » Thu Sep 24, 2015 9:35 pm

AM HD= Should have never been legalized to begin with. Too much interference. AM needs better tuner sections, for NRSC to go away, and for C-Quam to be in use for all AM music formats, Wideband AM better than narrow band cell phone grade.

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Re: How many AM's in your area have dropped HD?

Post by Deep Thought » Thu Sep 24, 2015 10:17 pm

What AM needs is more programmers who actually give a shit.

And yes, I mean that.

What we have now for the most part wouldn't find an audience if it was the only thing on the air. The technology is just one of and not the biggest problem.
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Re: How many AM's in your area have dropped HD?

Post by sallen » Fri Sep 25, 2015 9:57 am

In Seattle the ex Disney station on 1250 turned it off a while ago (5KW). There was a CC station on 850 in Tacoma that shut it off due to exciter issues (10KW directional day/ 1KW directional night).

I work with a CBS station in Seattle on 1090 that has had IBOC on for about a year and a half now. They use a Nautel NX50. IBOC seems to run well on this transmitter. Once you understand the NX50 overall it is not been a big issue running IBOC. There was some work to make the 3 tower, 2DA, shared with another station tower array the proper bandwidth. But over all from what I'm told the IBOC on 1090 works rather well. Nice not having any external add on stuff with the exception of the Exporter. Not sure if I would even run IBOC on anything less than 5KW or even 10KW. Overall I'm happy with the NX50 running IBOC. Checking modulation can be tricky but as long as you keep the positive peaks below 140% your good. The NX50, I'm told has a function(hard limiter) that keeps it from doing 100% negative. I know they say only to drive at 95% negative with IBOC but running. But at 99% negative does not seem to upset the IBOC or the IBOC mask. Not sure if I would feel the same running IBOC on a Harris DX-50 or older Nautel like the XR Series.

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Re: How many AM's in your area have dropped HD?

Post by Deep Thought » Fri Sep 25, 2015 11:16 am

sallen wrote:Not sure if I would feel the same running IBOC on a Harris DX-50 or older Nautel like the XR Series.
XR requires an external exciter along with the exporter, which takes care of the negative modulation issues. I've installed it on an XR6 which has been fairly trouble free.
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Re: How many AM's in your area have dropped HD?

Post by RFWarrior » Fri Sep 25, 2015 11:53 am

sallen wrote:I know they say only to drive at 95% negative with IBOC but running. But at 99% negative does not seem to upset the IBOC or the IBOC mask. Not sure if I would feel the same running IBOC on a Harris DX-50 or older Nautel like the XR Series.
I think that -95% limit was a brand specific thing. I don't recall any of our stuff having a negative modulation issue, although you can lose lock on receivers pretty quickly if you bang -100 too hard or too often. As far as the older rigs, I've set up AM IBOC on stuff from the newest back as far as ND10 transmitters built in the late 1980's. The older ones require more tweaking to get them running right, but once you're there, as long as the array is stable, they're good to go. Andy Skotdal is running IBOC on a pair of XR50's, less than an hour north of Seattle. Other than me blowing his AM-IBOC generators up during an "upgrade" as part of all digital tests and having to get new firmware flashed into them onsite, I don't believe they've had any significant problems.
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Re: How many AM's in your area have dropped HD?

Post by RGORJANCE » Sat Sep 26, 2015 7:16 am

The former Radio Disney AM on 1640 in the Milwaukee area went off IBOC quite awhile ago, and stayed analog until the station was sold. It remains analog and is owned and operated by Relevant Radio.

On a personal note-------long live analog, and I really liked the old "AM STERNO" as we used to call it. My old 1990 Dodge Grand Caravan had a really nice sounding AM Stereo radio.

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Re: How many AM's in your area have dropped HD?

Post by Bill DeFelice » Sat Sep 26, 2015 9:17 am

Deep Thought wrote:What AM needs is more programmers who actually give a shit.

And yes, I mean that.

What we have now for the most part wouldn't find an audience if it was the only thing on the air. The technology is just one of and not the biggest problem.
Followed closely with local ownership that cares about the community and isn't syndicating some morning show. It makes no sense to have a station on in the market with no local programming. One of the big corporate names has an AM near me with a part-time "news director" who does morning news and both the AM and FM drive hosts pre-record rip-n-read news headlines as part of the AM's news "coverage." It's really sad when I have to turn the a NYC all-news outlet to find out about Connecticut traffic!

I remember engineering a daytimer that used Kahn AM Stereo and it sounded wonderful. I beg to wonder what will become of the entire HD debacle now that DTS purchased iBiquity.
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Re: How many AM's in your area have dropped HD?

Post by sallen » Sat Sep 26, 2015 10:36 am

Jeff, nice to know the Nautel transmitters can run up to 99% negative with IBOC. Must have been early IBOC folk lore. The 1090 NX50 has been running great since the latest firmware upgrade to the Exgine card.

I think there are three camps here. 1-Those that want IBOC to go away. 2- those that see it as benefit. 3- Those that have to embrace it as part of the Job. I guess I'm in the "I embrace it as part of the Job". But my experience has been for the most part painless with IBOC. I live 5 miles from the transmitter and in my day to day life listening to radio in my area the IBOC has not been an issue. Most analog listeners have no idea when it's off. When It's on the IBOC does very well again no complaints. The station is a talk format so my biggest challenge is making live sports sound good. The biggest issue with IBOC is getting your antenna array to play nice.

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