AM Technical Profile: WMXB

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Frequency:
1280
Format:
Adult R&B
Transmitter Location:
[map] [bird's eye] [street view] On 3rd Street in Northport, just east of US-43 (Lurleen B Wallace Boulevard).  Near Wintzell's Oyster House.
Power (ERP):
Day: 5 kW
Night: 500 watts
Antenna:
Day: 1 tower
Night: 3 towers [pattern - PDF]
Other Information:
0.5 mV/m Daytime Groundwave Service Contour from the FCC's Public Files
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// W297BJ Tuscaloosa, AL
// WWPG Eutaw, AL
// WQZZ Boligee, AL
// W281CE Tuscaloosa, AL
(CP)
History:
1280 came on around 1951 and was WNPT (for NorthPorT). It was a Middle-of-the-Road (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 Classic R&B, 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.
 
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".
As of July 2017, the station appears to be in a four-way simulcast with WWPG Eutaw, as well as WQZZ in Boligee.  As of September 2017, the move to the Kaulton Field site had not happened; a new permit for 1 kW days and 35 watts night was subsequently issued in late October 2017.  That permit appears to have expired, and the facility was never built out.

The station grabbed a permit for a second FM translator in Tuscaloosa in July 2018, for 104.1 MHz. 

In September 2019, the station received a permit for the translator on 107.3 MHz to relocate from the Jug Factory Road tower to one in Holt, where several other translators will also be moving.  It will come with a boost in height and power. 

Although this station is shown as having a three tower array for directional nighttime operation, it appears to only operate using the one daytime tower.  The other two nighttime towers have been gone from the transmitter site since at least 2010, if not further back in time.