Am To Fm Conversions In Solo Markets


Does this mean 2GN have to do a deal with Sky Sports Radio for a frequency swap from 1368 to 94.3? If agreement cannot be reached will they have to stay on 1368 permanently?

Are Grant Broadcasters trying to get 2ST approved with the same specs as Power fm from Knights Hill to use the existing Power fm array.

Is ACMA blocking the proposed transmitter specifications of 2ST Nowra so there will be no overspill of this service into the licence area of 2ST Bowral as crazy as it might sound?


It’s possible, similar to what happened with 3YB in Warrnambool, which they swapped frequency with Vision Australia Radio (3RPH) to convert to FM. Problem is that 94.3 has the potential for adjacent-channel interference with 2BRW Braidwood (94.5), as well as co-channel interference with 1WAY’s Tuggeranong translator in certain parts.

It’s worth noting that 94.3 was proposed for a 2nd commercial FM licence when the Goulburn LAP was being consulted on back in 1998 before allocating the licence for a HPON service.

Don’t forget that Wollongong particularly also comes into consideration on why ACMA rejected 2ST’s proposed transmitter specifications, probably due to complaints by i98 & to a lesser extent, Wave FM, of potential overspill that 2ST would cause into the market. I mean, i98 & Wave FM already have enough trouble by the Sydney stations’ overspill into the market.

With that in mind, I think 2ST would need to transmit out of Cambewarra Mountain instead of Knights Hill due to the reasons above.


I get that i98 would complain about overspill into Wollongong from a proposed 2ST Service from Knights Hill, but if they approved Power Fm in the first place why would they not approve a new service from there with roughly similar specs.

Are ACMA admitting we made a mistake licensing Power fm from this location as we did not consider the overspill into Wollongong when the service first went to air?


It probably won’t happen realistically, but shouldn’t Power FM be moved to Cambewarra Mountain if ACMA’s findings reveal that it’s the ideal location for 2ST’s FM service to be transmitted from?

Also, how good (or otherwise) is reception of Sky Sports Radio 103.7, 2UUU 104.5 and Kix Country 105.3 from Cambewarra Mountain in the Wollongong market?

Probably because 2ST is programmed towards a distinctively different market/demographic to the other three Wollongong/Nowra commercial stations. If their FM service were to be transmitted from Knights Hill, I suspect 2ST would likely be listened to by a not insignificant amount of people in the Wollongong radio market.

As the market’s most dominant broadcaster, i98FM/WIN would likely have the most to lose from a 2ST FM service transmitting from Knights Hill. Grant Broadcasters probably wouldn’t care that much, just as long as people are listening to at least one of Wave FM, 2ST or Power FM.


It should be 101.1, as 105.3 is from Brokers Nose (Wollongong’s northern suburbs).

To answer your question, the FM services from Cambewarra Mountain is not too well received in much of the Wollongong market.

If that were to be the case, 2ST would attract plenty of 40+ listeners in the Wollongong radio market who are not properly catered for by i98 & Wave. It’s a bit similar to how Zinc (owned by Grant) from Gympie/Noosa attracts older listeners in the Sunshine Coast as an alternative to 92.7 Mix FM, who attracts a slightly younger audience, likewise with Triple M in the Fraser Coast/Hervey Bay region.


Thanks for the correction (not for the first time and dare I say, probably not the last ever :slightly_smiling_face:) on the Kix Country frequency.

Also judging by what you said about existing Cambewarra Mountain FM services being not too well received in much of the Wollongong market, then it seems like a great location for 2ST to be transmitted from if ACMA agrees with the concerns of i98FM/WIN about overspill.

Mind you, I personally hope 2ST (which I didn’t mind listening to - at least during the day - while on a couple of trips in the licence area during 2016) will be able to transmit from Knights Hill. i98FM, Wave and even Power FM sound not overly dissimilar to each over, so anything to shake up a fairly boring Wollongong radio market would be welcomed.


2ST 102.9 gets into some of the far western suburbs around the M7 and comes in clear into Campbelltown, from my experience, so unless that has changed (?), it would be odd to have 2ST overspill into Sydney but not into Wollongong.


Not to mention that 2ST also has overspill into the Blue Mountains.


2ST are potentially much more of a threat to the Wollongong stations than to the Sydney stations.

And that Mt Gibraltar’s elevation still affords a good signal towards Western Sydney even despite a fairly low ERP.


I can imagine that the conversation on this one would go down a treat


I agree. From a Sydney perspective, the levels of satisfaction with the local commercial stations in this market are probably high enough (for the average listener at least, I’m sure many of us here try out the nearby regional stations fairly often though :slight_smile:) that the existence of fortuitous reception from multiple regional/fringe markets aren’t a major enough issue for Sydney’s main commercial radio broadcasters to worry about.

But in the Wollongong radio market, fortuitous reception is basically Sydney, Nowra and that’s about it?


If they moved Power fm to Cambewarra Mountain they would loose their coverage into the Southern Highlands. Yes it will service Nowra well but that’s about it.
Power Fm would then require a translator for the Southern Highlands broadcasting from the Gib. Complete waste of spectrum.

2ST may only get approval to broadcast from Cambewarra as a local only service to match their existing service with Bowral and Ulladulla translators remaining in place. Will have to wait for the details to be released.


What about Kiama and Gerringong? Isnt that part of 2st area? I dont think Cambewarra gets into there well? They could consider a using 91.7 and transmitter at a high point around Jervis Bay? Maybe at Point perpendicular lighthouse. Should cover the coast nicely. Not sure how good Nowra would be.


Yes, Kiama & Gerringong are in the 2ST licence area. An FM service from Cambewarra should get into Gerringong quite well, especially considering that a number of houses there have their UHF antennas pointed towards Cambewarra, due to its direct Line-Of-Sight. For Kiama though, it’s a different story, in which Saddleback Mountain blocks the path towards Cambewarra.


Agree. Specs must be equal. Bad planning otherwise.

They knew the overspill, they were happy to encourage overspill in every adjacent metro market to Sydney, Sydney itself and even the next one on (adjacent to the adjacent metro).

The Edge is listed in their surveys unlike in Sydney.


ACMA and CRA have since changed their tune in relation to overspill. Look at the crazy decisions being made in relation to the planning of Dab+ on the Gold Coast. 2BS having different specs to Brock, and the hagling over power restriction for Move Fm and 2LT conversion.


I haven’t heard it prior to today when I’ve been checking but at lunchtime Friday 7BU was on 100.9. Picked it up quite well in Devonport except for a couple of pockets where 100.9 HiT Hobart took it out.


And this was always going to be the problem. Why wouldn’t you allocate on a more distant freq?

Sure have and it’s a crazy position to choose.


Spectrum management is an issue around Bass Strait. They should really use the first adjacents to Hobart up in Northern Tassie, but these are occupied by Victorian stations which pound in during the warmer months. The only district that can get away with using the Melbourne/Gippsland/Ballarat allocations is the We(s)t Coast which has sufficient terrain blockage.

102.9 could be another option; it would depend on 7ABCRR moving from 102.5 to 92.1? per the revised LAP. There would be potential co-channel issues with the flea powered services on 102.7 at Launceston and Rosebery respectively, though.


Great thinking on all your post @dxnerd well done.