Behold the Talk Radio “Metro” station

Behold K283CC – started this week in Des Moines, Iowa, operated by Saga Communications, which has been very aggressive in creating “metro” FM translators. Few people listen to the sub channels on digital HD radio (HD2/3/4), but by saying you intend to retransmit an HD channel using an analog FM translator, you essentially create a new FM station for the cost of an FM translator license. As a bonus, the new FM translator doesn’t count against the per market ownership caps. In theory, that could mean one owner having 15 or more FM stations in a market.

The down side is FM translators are limited to 250 watts, but if you mount it up very high in the air, that can cover most of a major city. I like to call them Low Power commercial FM stations, mirroring the NAB’s fight against the LPFM non- profits cluttering up “their band”

K283CC coverage map (250 watts)
KAZR FM Analog map (100,000 watts)

You can see that 250 watts is almost as good as 100,000 unless your target demographic is corn plants growing in the sun making ethanol,

This is the first metro station I remember running a conventional conservative talk format.

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