April 23, 2015 at 12:28 pm #9799
Does anyone know anything about K-XRY 91.1. I was tuning around on my wifi radio this morning and found them. The info I found saying they are the old KRRC 89.3 that I used to listen to when I lived in Portland in the 70s. I guess one of the few liberal talk stations in the NW now. KBBR North Bend 1340 is liberal talk, but I had not heard about K-XRY. It was probably discussed here, but somewhere along I missed it. 8.2 watts ERP is not much power. Does it cover Portland?Where is their antenna? I remember the old 10 watt K-BOO in the early 70s and they had trouble monitoring their own signal at the studio from the tx location in the West hills with 10 watts. The 100 KWers caused a lot of intermod. Thanks
PatrickApril 23, 2015 at 12:35 pm #9800
91.1 and 107.1 fm in Portland, xray.fm online
Been on the air about a year. Search this forum for KXRY or XRAY.April 23, 2015 at 1:01 pm #9803
The 91.1 MHz transmitter is at a communications tower site on Rocky Butte. Translator K296FT (107.1 MHz) broadcasts from Stonehenge (the “KGON Tower”).
KXRY has no affiliation with The Reed Institute. The Reed Institute transferred the KRRC license (at 97.9 MHz) to an organization called Common Frequency, LLC. Common Frequency had the license modified to broadcast at 91.1 MHz from SE Portland and then modified it again for the same frequency from Rocky Butte. They also had the callsign changed.
Common Frequency still holds the KXRY license, but the programming is being produced by an organization called the Cascade Educational Broadcast System.April 23, 2015 at 1:52 pm #9805
Thanks. I see their format is much like KBOO’s, a mix of everything. In checking Radio Locator, until I click on “fringe”, it does not show up even in the “distant” mode. The meter shown, does not show any signal to speak of in downtown Portland. I would guess that with only 8.2 watts. Probably they have a lot of listeners online.April 23, 2015 at 4:22 pm #9854
I’m not sure why you’re looking at Radio Locator and making a judgement call about 8W, most people listen in their cars on 107.1 K296FT which has far better coverage as it’s on the top of the hill. And yes quite a few listen online when indoors as 28W doesn’t penetrate walls very much. I can get 107.1 at home if I move my antenna a bit to clean up the signal.
The basic format is progressive talk and podcast from 7am till 2pm weekdays, the rest is music.April 23, 2015 at 4:27 pm #9855
The 28 watt translator at Stonehenge gives them Class A equivalent coverage at 107.1 as far as distance to the 60 dBu (before anyone asks, 107.1 can not meet Class A requirements). They lease the translator from MetroEast. MetroEast is in a 6 way MX for 100.7 MHz, the last remaining undecided LPFM frequency filed on in the most recent window for low power FM. I think the lease is for 3 years, but not sure. If MetroEast gets their own LPFM, they would not have to divest the translator but would have to rebroadcast their new LPFM on it. That would be bad news for KXRY. but the chances of MetroEast winning 100.7 outright are zero. However, the time share settlement of 100.7 is still a threat to KXRY’s future access to the translator.
KXRY, being a Class D station, can not be upgraded but has almost as much range as an LPFM which is 3.1 miles.
As far as any available frequencies for future translators or LPFM’s in the metro, that depends on a laundry list of parameters including what LPFM’s don’t get on the air and what gets gobbled up in the next translator window which would precede the next LPFM window. Also, LPFM’s can not move their antennae very far (as a minor change), even if the new site still meets spacing requirements.April 23, 2015 at 5:12 pm #9858
I did not know 107.1 had a better coverage than the 91.1. I see quite a few LPFM’s in the area. It is hard to tell from a distance how good or bad coverage is from these LP stations. It is always location of tower more than the power. I saw one in Hillsboro listed with 5 W ERP. So far we do not have any LPFM’s in Clatsop County, but a few years ago I saw one CP for 99.5. We do have many translators out here. I logged the old KRRC out here on the coast during a good Trops opening in the 70s or 80s. I used to get quite a few 10 watters from all over the NW when reception conditions were good. I used a huge Winegard FM Yagi in those days with a booster. Of course, the dial was not nearly as crowded then.April 23, 2015 at 5:53 pm #9861
KQRZ-LP 100.7 (the 5 Watt station) has a usable signal at my home in downtown Hillsboro. The main handicap is that second-adjacents KKRZ and KXL are significantly stronger, and KKRZ has IBOC. This causes KQRZ-LP to sound noisy on tube radios, but full quieting can be achieved on radios using ceramic filters.
K296FT sends a good signal toward downtown Portland, but the signal strength seems to really be compromised to the southwest. There are places, on the way to Beaverton, where the tower is visible, but the multipath is terrible. I wonder whether the tower legs are blocking the signal in this direction.April 23, 2015 at 6:04 pm #9862
I have never heard an HDFM signal OTA. Now AM HD I have. I have a Sony XFR receiver and often when I hook up the 1500′ Eastern Beverage, I get enough signal from KSL 1160 SLC, to get them in HD at night. There is no HD in Clatsop County and I hope with my FM6 yagi I might pull something in HD. Probably more likely Seattle than Portland, as the mountains are not as high to the NNE. I do well with Cougar Mt stations. I guess the IBOC hash on FM does not travel out as well on FM than it does on AM, as I have never heard any here. I have never checked in Portland, the car radio mutes inbetween the stations anyway. I get many stations on AM with the IBOC hash, though.April 24, 2015 at 12:34 am #9987
“It is hard to tell from a distance how good or bad coverage is from these LP stations. It is always location of tower more than the power.”
No, it is not hard. It’s always 3.1 miles to the 60 dBu contour. If they are higher up on a hill or a tower, they have to reduce power so as to not push that 1 mV/m beyond that 3.1 mile limit. No exemptions. Height helps if there is line of sight when you are slightly outside the 60 dBu contour, but even then once you get to 5 miles you are going to be bombarded by co channel interference unless you are in the middle of the eastern Oregon or someplace where the dial isn’t jammed full. The LPFM service works really well in small towns between larger markets where a 3.1 mile radius encompasses the entire population. In Portland, not so much. It’s kind of neighborhood radio. The folks at KXRY thought being up on Rocky Butte would cover the whole city and mistakenly promoted themselves that way before going on air. Oops. Even now with their translator, they can’t cover the whole market and on the fringes of the city the translator is noisy and sometimes not receivable. Other LPFM’s have begun to tone down their rhetoric somewhat as they are learning that these signals aren’t going to cover the whole city let alone the entire metropolitan area. Incidentally, Portland had more LPFM applications then any other city or metropolitan area. Many of them definitely thought they were going to have city wide coverage. Surprise! A full Class A can’t even cover the metro. Neither can the translators in the west hills. It’s just too much turf. That’s why they authorized Class C FM’s out west but not in the east. The markets cover huge areas of land.April 24, 2015 at 12:39 pm #9989
Thanks Andy. That I did not know. No wonder an LPFM’s coverage is limited. Yes, it would be easy to have a 100 watt or less LPFM cover Seaside and if the location was on a hill, it would cover from Seaside to Astoria. I live about halfway between Seaside and Astoria and I easily get all of the lower powered FMs as well as the majority of the 10 watt translators. Most of the stations are either on Megler Mt (SW WA), Coxcolm Hill (Astoria), or Tillamook Head (Seaside), so their coverage is good. We also do not have as much RF out here with no 100 KW locals. The most powerful ones are 102.3 Seaside (25 KW) and 99.7 Ilwaco WA (25 KW). 103.9 runs (Astoria) 11 KW. Everything else is 6 or 7 KW or less. I do remember living in NW Portland, off 21st years ago with am TV yagi on my balcony a couple floors up and I got a lot of FM, but there was still a lot of RF. Fortunately for DX, the Portland stations being in the West Hills, their signal shot over me, so I did not get much intermod. Before, I lived in SE Portland for a time and got a lot more. The dial in the metro area is much more crowded these days too.April 28, 2015 at 7:43 am #10081
The 28 watt translator at Stonehenge gives them Class A equivalent coverage at 107.1 as far as distance to the 60 dBu (before anyone asks, 107.1 can not meet Class A requirements).
Andy, what is the technical barrier for 107.1 to become a higher power or primary service, if a filing opportunity arises? Is it KLVU Sweet Home, KRQT Longview, or is the problem interference with adjacent frequencies?
What’s the primary barrier to 107.1 increasing it’s power? As a CP is already approved (requires digital OTA feed so not in place now) to go to 99W, where does the first technical (not legal) barrier to increased power arise?April 28, 2015 at 8:18 am #10083
I would say the main rule keeping 107.1 from a power upgrade is that fact that it is a non fill-in translator, and thus is limited to 28 watts as per FCC 74.1235.
If they found a way to become a fill-in translator (likely by leasing HD-2,3,4 space on a local station), then they are limited by proximity to KLVU. A directional antenna with a null to the south would be needed. Andy has done the research and knows the exact limitations. It has already been discussed a few times on this forum, in fact.April 28, 2015 at 10:06 am #10087
Even though it is not being used to feed the 107.1 translator (in fill-in status), 89.9 HD-2 is sill transmitting “KZME” program material.April 28, 2015 at 12:00 pm #10093
The most significant issue preventing 107.1 from being a primary service is the second adjacent issues on both sides. 106.7 and 107.5 are much too close (only 2.67 miles away) for 107.1 to ever meet Class A minimum spacing requirements. Remember, translators and LPFM’s are secondary service and can obtain waivers.
Second to that, there is an IF issue with the soon to be on air 96.5 MHz. at the same location (which would limit any secondary service power level to 99 watts if status was reversed back to “fill in” translator (74.1204 (g) ) http://tinyurl.com/nhxt2hm
The difference, however, between the existing 28 watts and the maximum for a “fill in” of 99 watts is not all that significant. Here is a map showing existing KXRY’s 60 dBu, K296FT’s existing 28 watts 60 dBu and K296FT’s 60 dBu for CP with power increase to 99 watts and directional antenna (under former fill in status). You can see even without drilling down into the FCC database for the application channel study and directional pattern that K296FT can not increase coverage north or south. (Click for full size map).
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