Low-power signal may affect reception near Coeur d’Alene

The Idaho Public Television over-the-air signal in the Coeur d’Alene area is temporarily broadcasting at lower than normal power. Some viewers on the outskirts of our coverage area may be experiencing an interruption in reception. We apologize for the temporary inconvenience and appreciate your patience.

We are in the process of installing a new transmitter and antenna at our Canfield Butte site in Coeur d’Alene. To accomplish this we are using a temporary transmitter and antenna while the new installation is being completed, and we are currently running at a substantially lower power.

This is the first step in a re-channeling process that will give the Coeur d’Alene area a new transmitter with improved signal strength on a new frequency by October 18.

Around October 18, when this process is complete and the new transmitter is operational, viewers in the Coeur d’Alene area who receive our signal over-the-air will need to “rescan” their TV tuners to find us again. After rescanning, viewers will continue to receive IdahoPTV on virtual channel 26.

Information on performing a rescan is located here: fcc.gov/rescan.

Here is some background on why this is happening: the current transmitter is broadcasting on frequency channel 45 (received by TV tuners as virtual channel 26). The FCC by virtue of funding raised in their Broadcast Spectrum Incentive Auction is funding the costs for this new equipment. The new transmitter will broadcast on over-the-air channel 18, which will continue to be identified by TV tuners as virtual channel 26.

In 2017, as part of the FCC’s nationwide Broadcast Spectrum Incentive Auction, spectrum in the 600 MHz block of television channels across the continental United States was auctioned off to bolster cellular networks. The Coeur d’Alene transmitter sits in the middle of this auctioned spectrum and is required to relinquish that channel by October 18 and move to the new channel allocation. IdahoPTV was assigned a new channel (18) to continue broadcasting in the area.

“While this undertaking has been a very large task, we are fortunate that the burden of cost has not been a factor in making the adjustment, since the Congress and FCC have provided the necessary funding,” says Rich Van Genderen, IdahoPTV’s director of technology. “So although this is an inconvenience, at least it isn’t an unfunded mandate for us to meet.”

3 thoughts on “Low-power signal may affect reception near Coeur d’Alene

  1. David Rolando says:

    1/7/20 Power seems less than it used to be when I thought it would be better. I could pick up before in Spokane with no problem – now it cuts in and out no matter what I do or how I aim my antenna.


    1. Greg Likins, Idaho Public Television says:

      Hi, Jack! The new transmitter began operation on Oct. 18. You should be able to get the signal now. You’ll probably have to rescan your TV for the updated signal to appear.


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