AM Technical Profile: WMXB


Frequency:
1280
Format:
Urban Adult Contemporary
Transmitter Location:
[map] [bird's eye] On 3rd Street in Northport, just east of US-43 (Lurleen B Wallace Boulevard).  Near Wintzell's Oyster House.
[map] [street view] On Old Kaulton Road, just south of Beech Street, west of I-359 in Tuscaloosa, near Kaulton Field park. (CP)
Power (ERP):
Day: 5 kW
Night: 500 watts
Night: 35 watts (CP)
Antenna:
Day: 1 tower
Night: 3 towers [pattern - PDF]
Night: 1 tower (CP)
Other Information:
[FCC]
[Radio-Locator]
[Wikipedia]
// W297BJ Tuscaloosa, AL
History:
1280 came on around 1951 and was WNPT (for NorthPorT). It was a MoR station in the 60's. At some point it switched to a black gospel format, possibly when the calls changed to WWPG in 1993.  Sometime around 2000-2002  two of their three tower array mysteriously disappeared. It appeared that there would be a road or pipeline put in right by the transmitter. By January 2005 the station was playing black oldies, with gospel on weekends. The station may have switched back to all gospel shortly thereafter. The station had a permit to move to Eutaw from Tuscaloosa, but the permit expired in December 2008.

As of March 2010 the FCC still shows them with 3 towers at night (500 watts) but darned if I've been able to see them from Lurleen B Wallace Blvd.  They should be right behind Dreamland near the river but I don't see much of anything.  The signal over in the Skyland area of Tuscaloosa was practically non-existent when I did a band scan.  They are shown to be authorized to rebroadcast on FM translator W245BR but (as of late 2009)  it's relaying Alabama Public Radio instead.
 
In May 2010 the station's call sign changed to WMXB.  A month later it was reported the station was being heard on W245BR with an urban AC format as "Mix 96.9".  In April 2011 the station received a construction permit to move to the Kaulton Field area of west Tuscaloosa, with 5,000 watts days and 35 night watts from a single tower.  That same permit was re-issued or changed slightly in July 2014.  The antenna specified in the permit is somewhat unique for this area, a Valcom self-supported fiberglass pole antenna.  These types of antennas are usually used by non-broadcast services, and this particular model is only approved for certain AM stations above 1100 kHz.  In January 2015, the station's FM simulcast moved to translator W297BJ and the slogan changed to "Mix 107.3".