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NAB Creates LPTV Identifier

The NAB has created an online resource where users can determine whether they get television signals from low-power TV stations. LPTVs and translators--stations that relay the signals of full-power stations to far-flung areas--are not subject to the Feb. 17, 2009 DTV transition date.

There are roughly 2,100 licensed LPTVs in the nation, according to the Federal Communications Commission. Another 600 are considered “Class A,” or LPTVs that have to follow more FCC rules than non-Class A stations. More than 4,700 translator stations carry TV signals through some of the nation“s more forbidding terrain.

Unlike full-power stations that carry a “-TV” after their call letters, e.g., “WECT-TV,” Class As are suffixed “-CA;” and LPTVs, “-LP.” Translated signals show up on a different channel number than the primary signal.

The NAB“s new data base, at, provides information on how the transition will effect low-power stations and the people who rely on them. A ZIP Code search turns up the LPTVs in the defined area.