Total posts : 45366
AFAICS, KENC was always a labor of love first. I hope Ken Cartwright can finally come up with a venue that works … I hate to see a once-appreciated radio effort go down … but I wouldn’t blame him for losing heart after all this.
As for the 2-watter LPFM, I’ve never heard of one operating at power level that weak either. KLOI on Lopez island is 17 watts, but operates under the 100 watt license rules. I haven’t queried them about it, but 1) It’s a directional antenna, and 2) It’s HAAT is fairly low (Lopez Island doesn’t have big hills like Orcas Island and my own San Juan Island do).
Altogether, my best guess is the engineering was set up to prevent any interference on their frequency. On certain parts of San Juan I can hear a Canadian station on that same frequency. Their coverage area has to be very defined, but because there is just low hills, it’s able to service the community pretty well.
OTOH, it looks like the Stayton LPFM station has a HAAT consistent with the area and also has a 50′ ND antenna. I imagine a directional antenna with specific shadowing is more expensive to engineer and build. IOW, it might that if it had more power, it would have to be directional. As it is, they have some altitude (approx. 650′) and antenna height which probably gets them LOS target coverage they can live with, even if only 2 watts.
Under the new regulations for LPFM, I’d be willing to bet applications for new LPFM community stations in cities have to have very low power as well.