About HD Radio

KCCK received a major grant from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting for conversion equipment that allows us to broadcast using the next generation of over-the-air radio technology, digital HD Radio. HD Radio brings to FM and AM the same advantages that digital TV is bringing to the television world.

It's important to note that KCCK has not changed! You can still listen to and enjoy all of our programming on your radio, without having to change a thing. Here are some of the most common questions about people ask about digital radio:

What is HD Radio?
HD Radio is a new technology that enables AM and FM radio stations to broadcast their programs digitally, a tremendous technological leap from today's familiar analog broadcasts. These digital broadcasts provide listeners with radically improved audio quality and reception. Signal fading, static, hisses and pops are a thing of the past.

Best of all, the digital signal is transmitted alongside the regular analog signal, which means that even though you'll need an HD-capable receiver to hear KCCK's digital broadcast, you'll tune to 88.3, just like you always have, no new channel numbers to remember. If you travel out of the coverage range of the digital signal (which has a tighter radius than the analog) and lose it, your radio will automatically switch over to analog, like a roaming cell phone.

What does it cost?
Nothing! This is not a satellite subscription service. Digital radio is free to the listener, but you will have to buy a new, HD-capable radio to receive the HD transmission.

Will I still be able to get KCCK's signal without a digital radio?
Yes! The digital signal is transmmitted alongside the regular analog signal. You can still hear us in your car, your office and home on your radio as you always have. KCCK will always broadcast in both analog and digital so you will still be able to hear us on your existing radio (but once you hear HD, you'll want to make the switch!)

Any other advantages?
Data services such as song and artist information, weather, etc. will start to display right on your receiver. HD also makes available a second program channel, where we could offer special music or features, in additon to our main signal. We don't have the equipment to do that right now, but are looking into it.

I love KCCK, but am not about to buy a new radio just for one station.
Cedar Rapids-Iowa City has several HD stations. No fewer than four area stations in addition to us (KZIA, KMRY, KSUI, WSUI) have also added digital capabilities. This means you'll have several listening options once you invest in an HD receiver.

What about a digital receiver? Can I buy one?
At Jazz 88.3, we have the Boston Acoustics Receptor, the Sangean HDR-1, HDT-1 (Sangean has since added the HDT-1X) and the Radio Shack Accurian. Corridor-area Radio Shacks are carrying the Accurian. Our opinion: The Radio Shack is a great buy for the money. The Sangean HDR-1 is a close second and with its wood-grain case, might look better with your decor. The Boston Acoustics has slightly better sound, particularly bass response, but it's expensive. All of the above are table-top models. The only component tuner we've tried out is the Sangean HDT-1. But it is outstanding, and we think may be the equal of tuners costing hundreds more.

If you have questions about HD radio or concerns please contact KCCK at 319-398-5446 or email , KCCK General Manager. Thank you!