Part 15 Not Good for FM

We really need something between Part 15 and LPFM. The coverage of Part 15 isn’t going to be much better than a couple of hundred feet. The Inner Richmond is an urban neighborhood with a mix of apartment buildings and single family homes. So even with Part 15, my signal could reach a couple of hundred people.

Even so, I want to reach a wider audience. My ideal pattern would be to cover USF to east, Park Presidio to the West, between the Park and Geary Boulevard. ¬†Ideally, I could just run my 1 Watt “barefoot” – no amplifier – but there is no service that lets me do that without a license.

LPFM seems out of reach, both in terms of allocation and the station I am prepared to construct. It would be nice to have a service between Part 15 and LPFM. Such a service would not require coordination, but perhaps a minimal authorization so as to avoid being a higher power Part 15.

I don’t expect anything useful to come from the Federal government, so I have to consider my options.

Maybe I could do better, in terms of range, with AM instead of FM. The downside of course is that I would have to construct an AM transmitter. Besides, AM can sound really good. On the other hand noise is a real problem for low power AM in the urban environment. Just about everything plugged in is generating noise these days.

I guess I’ll proceed with construction of the FM station and just see how far a Part 15 signal goes in the neighborhood and take it from there.


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