WGBH-TV coverage after August 2

Norm Pierce npierce.aq3h@dappermapper.com
Wed Jul 31 14:56:28 EDT 2019

After a lifetime of watching Channel 2, I'm wondering if those days are 

Looking at the application for their construction permit for the new RF 
channel 5 assignment [1], it appears that the WGBH engineers have done 
their best to give the strongest signal that the FCC rules allow them to 
do on that channel.

According to the "Post Auction Baseline" spreadsheet [2], the baseline 
population served by WGBH-TV, as limited by terrain, is given as 
7,633,586.  In WGBH's application for a construction permit for the new 
RF channel 5 assignment, they give a slightly higher number of 7,669,250 
because of the change of tower, and the fact that they were able to 
increase the ERP from 5.3 kW to 6.7 kW without exceeding the geographic 
coverage area of the largest station within the same market (see 
§73.622(f)(5)) -- something they are apparently allowed to do because 
the proposed coverage contour may extend beyond that of the CCRPN 
parameters for a station that changes bands (see §73.3700(b)(1)(iii)).

But even with the higher ERP, does anyone think that the population 
served won't actually be much smaller than it currently is, given the 
problems with DTV on VHF?  Will it really reach an over-the-air audience 
slightly larger than it currently does on RF channel 19, and comparable 
to channels 4, 5, and 7, or do the above coverage numbers suffer from 
gross optimism?

Norm Pierce

[1] WGBH-TV_reassignment_initial_minor_mod_application_ENG_06-18-2017.pdf

[2] "Post Auction Baseline" spreadsheet"

"Incentive Auction Closing and Channel Reassignment Public Notice" 
(CCRPN) (DA 17-314)

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