Radio Groups Ask FCC For More HD Power
June 11, 2008 at 4:53 PM (PT)
A group of broadcasters has filed a request with the FCC seeking to increase the HD power levels. This "high-power" FM initiative has been in the works for months, have cited several reasons for the Commission to grant the request.
Current HD Radio power is limited to 20 dB below analog power, the equivalent of one percent of a station’s authorized analog power. The power of those digital signals, in many cases, don't offer sufficient building penetration or market coverage to maximize HD Radio potential to the listening public. The proposed power increase will allow broadcasters to better replicate analog coverage areas and thereby offer more listeners the benefits of digital technology.
Field tests conducted by an independent third party for several broadcasters and IBIQUITY DIGITAL CORP. focused on increasing HD Radio power from -20 dB to -10 dB, Increasing digital power from one to 10% of analog power generally expanded digital coverage to ensure stations are able to replicate analog coverage and filled in deficiencies with the stations’ digital service areas. The tests also showed a substantial increase in indoor listenability resulting from better building penetration.
Better still, the tests showed insignificant adverse effects on first adjacent analog operation, and any interference wasn't distinguishable from the interference that can be expected from LPFM spacing relaxation.