Some FMs have begun to raise their IBOC power, as allowed in the order released Jan. 29 by the Federal Communications Commission.
Anecdotal reports from a handful of stations point to speedy approval of their applications for Special Temporary Authority to raise their HD Radio power the automatic 6 dB, up to an FM digital operating power of –14 dBc. (Have you raised power? Tell me at Lstimson@nbmedia.com.)
Those who want to go up to the maximum 10 decibels below carrier need to provide more information than those stations applying for the blanket 6 dB power hike.
The FCC has an instruction sheet on its Web site for those who want to file an STA to raise their digital power by 6 dB to 10 dB now.
Otherwise, the approval isn't official until 30 days after the order is published in the Federal Register.
We've reported that some public stations have gone ahead and purchased new transmitters anticipating the power increase approval, but I've heard that many groups are now grappling with the practical aspects of the power hike, such as how much of an increase their current transmission equipment can handle with minor changes vs. the costs of buying additional gear.
Radio World Editor in Chief Paul McLane outlines other details of the power hike and its implications in his latest column.