KISN-LP Update

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  • #8332
    Andy Brown
    Participant

    I heard KISN-LP “testing” over the weekend on 95.1. I caught their signal from about 12:15 to 12:30 PM as I was heading up to the PDXRadio.com get together in NE Portland. The entire observation was outside their primary service contour (60 dBu) so YMMV. I left Westmoreland (Sellwood) via SE Bybee and first tuned them in adjacent to the Eastmoreland Golf Course. Their signal strength was inconsistent as I drove along Bybee to the corner of SE 28th and SE Woodstock (SW corner of Reed College campus). The signal improved as I drove by the Reed campus on SE Woodstock towards SE Caeser Chavez (39th) where I turned left on SE 39th heading north. The signal remained steady and at full quieting along 39th until they did an I.D. and went silent as I approached SE Division.

    Audio quality: Being that this was a test, it is unknown what their source was but the modulation was very very low. I’m guessing about 25 kHz (100% modulation is 75 kHz), so they sounded very weak albeit clean. There was no high end and no low end response with the music on air. Then the ID came on at full modulation and full response. It did not sound like there was any processing going on, i.e. no limiting or compression on the voice was evident although the music might have been compressed but it was at such a low level it was hard to say.

    Content: Of the songs they played when I tuned in, they were total throwaways. I kind of recognized them as stuff I had long forgotten as junk late 50’s early 60’s filler music with old fashioned production value sound. Sorry, horrible would be overstating it. I don’t think there would be much of an audience for that kind of “entertainment” but then again, it was just a test. It certainly DID NOT remind of the KISN I heard in 1976 nor did it sound like any of the air checks of earlier KISN stuff. More importantly, though, if they were running RF power checks they should have gone with a dead carrier instead of that crap. They did break a golden rule (which surprised me as these guys are supposedly ex radio people) about on air day time testing for a new signal. That unwritten rule is don’t modulate at low levels. It serves no purpose. If low level modulation is needed for example to perform a proof of performance (no longer required but certainly handy), use tones AND do it at night where it won’t 1)confuse any listeners 2)present to the potential audience anything less than the real deal on signal quality 3)misrepresent the sound and programming nature of your future presence on the dial.

    Their 60 dBu contour only extends (in the direction of where I heard them) to SE 52nd, so this is about a mile outside of their interference free listening area, so the good news from a coverage perspective looks positive as long as you aren’t below the ridge along SE 39th, where whatever is left of the signal is shooting over your head.

    Here’s their coverage: http://binged.it/1FQ7uuL
    With 1.8 watts at 249 m HAAT, it is unlikely this signal will still be strong enough to completely overcome co channel and adjacent channel interference anywhere close to the river which is 5 miles West (to Mocks Bottom) or about 6.5 miles NW to the Ross Island Bridge.

    Radio in my car: Alpine
    Antenna: Rear window diversity

    Full quieting: A phenomenon on FM transmissions where the incoming signal is sufficient to engage the receiver limiters – thus eliminating the noise due to amplitude fluctuations.

    #8465
    msndrspdx
    Participant

    Over the weekend, I went to the Portland Roadster Show at the Expo Center. Sarurday was billed as KISN Day, so they had their Street Team there, selling the new KISN Goodguys T-Shirts with the new 95.1 reference on the back. On the main stage at one point, one of the Street Team members told the crowd that KISN-LPFM should be ready to go “in about a month.” That would put opening night in late April.

    This morning the Goodguys Facebook page advised listeners to set a preset on your radio (if you have presets) for 95.1. They are starting transmitter tests in short bursts to check the equipment and penetration. They say a start date should be announced soon.

    I live in Sellwood, and my boom box is set at the moment to that Spanish station next door to KISN’s frequency. That station is basically Spanish language gospel. A bit of background noise, but fairly listenable. The station runs an ID covering several stations. Can’t quite make out calls, but cities include Fresno, CA, Winnemucca NV, at least three East Coast locations, and an Oregon ID (presumably, Portland area). The ID is usually read by a female voice in English, voices otherwise alternate between male and female. No sign of a peep from KISN yet.

    Best, Mike 😉

    #9417
    msndrspdx
    Participant

    KISN Everywhere Facebook page reports that a date and time for the kickoff of KISN-LPFM will be made tomorrow (Friday 4/10/15). Expect the transmitter tests to progressively get longer as launch night nears.

    #9436
    semoochie
    Participant

    How about May 1st? It’s a nice round number. 🙂

    #9454
    Alfredo_T
    Participant

    The Spanish Gospel station is 95.9 MHz. You would be closer by tuning to KNRK (94.7) or KBFF (95.5). [I consider the programming of KNRK much more listenable than the Spanish Gospel on K240CZ, but of course, that is just according to this bunny’s ears.]

    #9460
    msndrspdx
    Participant

    KISN Everywhere FB page reported this morning that kickoff day will indeed be on May 1st. They!re planning to open with “Morgen,” the same song the original KISN started with over 50 years ago to the day. When they get going, the stream will be on goodguyradio.com and on the TuneIn Radio app (free!) on iPads, iPhones, and Android phones & tablets. They did the same thing on the KISN Internet station (2012-14).

    Beat, Mike 😉

    #9462
    MarkAndrews
    Participant

    I still have the old KISN TuneIn app setting… Will I need to download it again? Anxious to blare Beach Boys music while burning up the Superstition Freeway in Tempe full blast!

    #9482
    msndrspdx
    Participant

    Yup. The original KISN started with that song back in ’59. German lyric, first issued in the US on Laurie, originally issued in Germany (and several other countries) on Polydor. You may be more familiar with The Ventures instrumental version, from their debut Liberty/Dolton LP. In fact, if memory serves, The Ventures actually started that album with that song. I actually found label scans for Ivo’s version on 45cat.com which is an amazing resource.

    Best, Mike 😉

    #9715
    Alfredo_T
    Participant

    KISN-LP was testing again on Monday, April 20/Tuesday, April 21.

    I first caught the station in the 11 PM hour, while driving on Route 43, between Lake Oswego and Portland. The signal was pretty stable from Lake Oswego to just a bit north of the Sellwood Bridge. I started to encounter some multipath on SW Macadam Ave. Continuing through downtown Portland and west on US 26, I was able to keep listening until I passed the top of Sylvan Hill. After that, the frequency was dominated by KSND.

    I then ran into a big surprise in that I was able to hear KISN-LP from my home in Hillsboro. I am not kidding. I used a Yagi and a tuned RF preamplifier. Without the tuned amplifier, I just heard horrible overload that completely covered up KISN-LP.

    KISN-LP dropped carrier around 12:30 AM. I am now hearing KSND.

    #9719
    msndrspdx
    Participant

    Really? What were they playing? Jingles?

    Best, Mike 😉

    #9722
    Alfredo_T
    Participant

    On this test broadcast, they were playing music, IDs and tones. The tones sounded as if somebody were at the transmitter site, manually turning the amplitude and frequency knobs on the signal generator. Overall, the modulation levels were pretty good this time.

    #9754
    Alfredo_T
    Participant

    I heard more of KISN-LP testing on Tuesday evening, during the 6 PM hour. This time, I was driving eastbound on OR 8 then south on SW Murray. From these locations, the signal was listenable on a car radio, albeit weak. When I reached the intersection with SW Scholl’s Ferry Rd, I lost the signal. They may have dropped carrier at this point.

    During this test, I heard test tones that sounded like the ones I heard on Monday night. I now wonder whether the test tones served any real purpose or if they were there just to be cute.

    #9781
    msndrspdx
    Participant

    KISN-LP is testing as I write this. starting just before 11pm. They’re playing music and jingles. When they came on air, they ran an ID which ran, “KISN-LP, Portland…testing!” At the top of the hour they played the fanfare and an ID which ran, “KISN-LP, Portland, a service of the Western Oregon Radio Club!” Playing Chad & Jeremy at the moment. I live in Sellwood, so the signal has only a tiny bit of BG noise. Now that they are playing music, I have my tuner set to them. Heard the carrier come on, too. Nice sound so far.

    Best, Mike 😉

    #9782
    jr_tech
    Participant

    Thanks for the heads up!…. Dxing them from Hillsboro best with my antenna pointed about 125 degrees. Just heard Eight Miles High.

    #9791
    msndrspdx
    Participant

    I stayed with KISN until they closed down at midnight, using the same ID they used at the start. Then the carrier faded out two or three minutes later. They’re clearly getting the kinks (Kinks?) sorted out before they formally open for business on May 1, which is a week from tomorrow. Sounds like they’re almost ready. They did play the “Rose City Rocker” jingle once, about halfway thru the hour or so they were up.

    By the way, Alfredo and Jr., you might want to send your reception reports to KISN thru the comments section of the photo gallery at goodguyradio.com or to the KISN Ecerywhere Facebook page. (I sent a message to the latter while they were broadcasting.) A signal running just under two watts from Hillsboro is pretty good! Being on top of Mt. Scitt clearly helps! There must be a notch in the West Hills that lines up with their tower that allows their signal to travel that far west!

    Best, Mike 🙂

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