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Lubbock, Texas
United States
Branding KTTZ Channel 5
Channels Digital: 39 (UHF)
Virtual: 5 (PSIP)
Subchannels 5.1 PBS
5.2 Create
Affiliations PBS (since 1970)
Owner Texas Tech University
First air date October 16, 1962 (1962-10-16)[1]
Call letters' meaning Texas Tech
Sister station(s) KTTZ-FM, KTXT-FM
Former callsigns KTXT-TV (1962–2012)
Former channel number(s) Analog:
5 (VHF, 1962–2009)
Former affiliations NET (1962-1970)
Transmitter power 890 kW
Height 143 m
Facility ID 65355
Transmitter coordinates 33°34′55.2″N 101°53′26.6″W / 33.582000°N 101.890722°W / 33.582000; -101.890722
Licensing authority FCC
Public license information: Profile
Website kttz.org

KTTZ-TV, virtual channel 5 (UHF digital channel 39), is a Public Broadcasting Service (PBS) member Public television station for Lubbock, Texas. The station is owned by Texas Tech University, where the station is housed.

History and facilities[edit]

An open circuit, noncommercial, educational television station licensed by the Federal Communications Commission, KTXT-TV began broadcasting on October 16, 1962.[1]

The station is located on the southwestern part of campus of Texas Tech University, near the 817-foot broadcast tower. Its mission is "to serve the public interest, convenience and necessity, and satisfy all federal regulations relating to its staffing, operation, and funding; to support all aspects of the University, with special emphasis given to curricula and cultural contributions; and to make a positive contribution to University-community relations throughout the South Plains". KTXT-TV, also referred to as South Plains Public Television, began digital transmission in the fall of 2002.[2]

KTXT has broadcast solely digitally since 4:30 pm February 5, 2009; as the Channel 5 analog transmitter had failed less than two weeks before the scheduled end of analogue broadcasting, the approximately $25,000 cost of repair could not be justified.[3]

The station's former analog channel 5 was added to the FCC table of allotments in 1952 as a commercial channel. Plains Broadcasting Company (newspaper interests behind Amarillos Globe and News newspapers and KGNC A/F/T and The Lubbock, Texas Avalanche and Journal and KFYO/A/F) received a construction permit for channel five in 1953. The station planned to locate on then rural land at 74th street and college (now University avenue). That site is today used for KLBK-TV and virtual sister station KAMC (TV).

The KFYO-TV owners had their hands full with their first station in Amarillo KGNC-TV (now KAMR) on channel 4. By 1957 Amarillo had three operating TV stations. KFYO realized the difficulty of making money with a third station in a city then smaller and younger than Amarillo. They allowed the KFYO-TV cp to 'go to seed'.

In the late fifties and early sixties, there were occasional rumbles that someone would file for channel 5 on a commercial basis. The locally based owners of Lubbock stations KCBD-TV (Joe Bryant) and KDUB-TV (Dub Rogers) stepped in and offered to assist Texas Tech College with starting a station to operate on a non commercial basis. Each pledged 25,000 dollars and the donation of various equipment.

KTXT-TV signed on from a converted building (the former Agriculture Pavilion) and a 452-foot tower located at the new studios. The station installed a six bay RCA antenna, used dual 1 5/8" feed lines, and a 500 watt RCA TT-500BL transmitter for an ERP of about 2,500 watts visual. In 1966 a grant bought the station a TT-6EL transmitter which raised power to 25,700 watts. In 1982-83 the station received a donated 817 foot tower (former KAMR-TV Amarillo tower) and 12 bay antenna. This allowed the station to raise power to 60,600 visual. A Harris transmitter was installed in 1984 and the station converted to BTSC (stereo TV audio) operation.

On January 15, 2012 KTXT-TV changed its call letters to KTTZ-TV.


In 2007, KTXT-TV was awarded a Silver Telly Award for the first season of its original series, StoryTellers & MusicMakers. The 13-part music interview show is hosted by Lubbock native singer and songwriter Kenny Maines, member of The Maines Brothers Band and uncle to Dixie Chicks lead singer Natalie Maines. It features various regional musicians and industry insiders talking about West Texas' musical influence on the rest of the world.[4]

Digital television[edit]

Digital channels[edit]

The station's digital channel is multiplexed:

Channel Video Aspect PSIP Short Name Programming[5]
5.1 1080i 16:9 KTTZ-HD Main KTTZ-TV programming / PBS
5.2 480i 4:3 KTTZ-DT Create

Analog-to-digital conversion[edit]

KTTZ-TV (as KTXT-TV) shut down its analog signal, over VHF channel 5, at 4:30 p.m. on February 5, 2009 (four months before most full-power television stations in the United States transitioned from analog to digital broadcasts under federal mandate on June 12). The station's digital signal remained on its pre-transition UHF channel 39.[6] Through the use of PSIP, digital television receivers display the station's virtual channel as its former VHF analog channel 5.



See also[edit]

External links[edit]