ABC Local Radio

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It depends when you’re listening to BBC R2. They’re a bit chatty in the mornings. Less so in the afternoons and evening.


How were they this morning? Did anyone listen? @TV.Cynic


Another article in The Age this time lamenting the declining fortunes of ABC Local and pointing the finger at the disadvantage of being on AM, especially in attracting younger listeners, but saying it was “unlikely” they could switch to FM.

Hmm I’m almost thinking it’s worth a small wager that they move Classic FM to DAB+ only and put the metro Locals on FM.

It’s starting to be a theme in ABC press releases…


97.3 Illawarra gets into most of Sydney, and 92.5 Central Coast gets into the northern suburbs ok from my experience, so ABC local radio has been available on FM in most of Sydney since about 1991. I wonder how many listeners actually tune into FM instead of AM.


Yep, I reckon that’s what they’re planning to do.


I suppose a possible shift to FM may explain the reason why the AM frequencies were dumped when the rebrand happened last year, but I’m still sceptical that it would help improve the ratings of ABC Local Radio - the content and presenters seems to be the main issue with Local Radio judging by the feedback I’ve seen online about the Melbourne & Brisbane stations in particular. Thankfully from all reports, ABC Radio Sydney seems to have been mostly spared from this nonsense and continues to have high quality presenters/program content…for now.

Also, Classic FM got figures around the 2-3% mark during the last set of metropolitan radio surveys. A decent chunk of that 2-3% or so would probably drift off to non-surveyed community stations (particularly the MBS stations on the East Coast & Adelaide, not sure if Perth has an equivalent) if the ABC were to make Classic FM a DAB+ only service in the capital cities. Would the ABC really want to lose 2-3% of their audience that isn’t guaranteed to have an interest in listening to any of the national broadcaster’s other analogue stations? Probably not.

Not to mention you’d have all the audio snobs/purists complaining that classical music sounds terrible on Digital Radio compared to FM.


AM/FM has nothing to do with attracting a younger audience, if they want to get a younger group, focus on DAB, streaming, better presenters, better content and update the bloody playlist. ABC Radio Perth plays some shocking stuff that would make anyone under 60 switch off.


Rubbish. Younger people listen exclusively to FM/bluetooth etc. They just don’t do AM, it’s ‘old’ and sounds awful. I do but I’m not a normal consumer. Younger people would be the least likely to use DAB as well. ABC Local Radio on FM makes a hell of a lot of sense. Classic Radio could shift to DAB+ and online.

I do agree content wise there could be changes though, but adding Myf and weird music at lunchtime isn’t helpful I don’t think. I’m 28 and I don’t enjoy that show very much, whereas I do enjoy Raf and Jon, but again I’m not a regular 28 year old media consumer.


If the suggested shift of ABC Local to FM and Classic FM to DAB in metro areas happens then:

What happens to 702, 774 etc in metro areas. Do they just go off air?

It creates the unusual situation of Classic FM being available on FM in regional areas, but not metros, which will impact on branding and may cause confusion.


I don’t think I own anything to listen to AM radio either (other then the radio in the car)


Yes I agree with you.

I also think that when ABC Local radio talks about keeping or attracting younger audiences they’re not talking about teens or even 20-something’s. I think they’d focus on broadening the appeal of ABC Local to 30+ age groups which would be where the appeal of FM would be highest.


I would suggest that if it happens in metro areas they would also replace Classic FM in regional areas with something else - possibly ABC Country or Double J

Classic FM generally rates even lower in regional areas than in metro.


They wouldn’t want to lose those frequencies! I suspect they’ll try to simulcast the metro stations on AM and FM.

And I don’t know anyone who listens to AM radio these days (apart from me!) except to listen to sport.

That includes people from youngsters to 70+ year olds.


Number one stations in Sydney and Melbourne are AM. Last survey 35% share for AM stations in Sydney 30% Melbourne.


Isn’t that based mostly on the same 65+ audience listening to 2GB all day?


I’m mostly dab+ but occasionally I’ll take the footy tranny out from the footy bag and have it next to me around the house or in the garden. Also got an old clock radio which goes between the garage and laundry.


I’m a newsradio listener and at home i’ll stream onto my smart speaker and in the car i’ll normally have DAB on unless i want to hear parliment (and even than i only last 10 mins before i switch back to DAB with non answers to questions and dorothy dixers)


So you are listening to parliament on NewsRadio? That’s on DAB too.


I wonder how Beethoven would sound on AM?

Kidding. I’d say they would simulcast ABC Local on AM and FM at least for a while. Just guessing.

The AM frequencies might eventually be auctioned off to community or even commercial operators perhaps. Would love to see a commercial operator get them actually - even just to annoy Macquarie Radio :slight_smile:


no, parliment is not on DAB - only alaogue. during sittings of parliment newsradio continues with rolling news (as they do when the analogue service boradcasts sport)