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San Diego, California
United States
BrandingKPBS Television
ChannelsDigital: 19 (UHF)
Virtual: 15 (PSIP)
OwnerSan Diego State University
(The Board of Trustees of the California State University for San Diego State University)
First air dateJune 25, 1967 (52 years ago) (1967-06-25)
Call letters' meaningPublic
Sister station(s)KPBS-FM
Former callsignsKEBS-TV (1967-1970)
Former channel number(s)
  • Analog:
  • 15 (UHF, 1967-2009)
  • Digital:
  • 30 (UHF, 2001-2019)
Former affiliationsNET (1967-1970)
Transmitter power285 kW
Height572.7 m (1,879 ft)
Facility ID6124
Transmitter coordinates32°41?52.7?N 116°56?6.3?W / 32.697972°N 116.935083°W / 32.697972; -116.935083 (KPBS)Coordinates: 32°41?52.7?N 116°56?6.3?W / 32.697972°N 116.935083°W / 32.697972; -116.935083 (KPBS)
Licensing authorityFCC
Public license informationProfile

KPBS, virtual channel 15 (UHF digital channel 19), is a Public Broadcasting Service (PBS) member television station licensed to San Diego, California, United States. Owned by San Diego State University as part of KPBS Public Media, it is a sister station to NPR member KPBS-FM (89.5 MHz). The two outlets share studios on the SDSU campus on Campanile Drive in San Diego. The TV station's transmitter is located on San Miguel Mountain in southwestern San Diego County.

On cable, KPBS is available in standard definition on Cox Communications, Spectrum and AT&T U-verse channel 11 and Cablemás channel 146. It is also available in high-definition on Cox digital channel 1011, Spectrum digital channel 711, AT&T U-verse channel 1011 and Izzi Baja California digital channel 93. The only time KPBS' over-the-air channel 15 placement is mentioned at all is during the rare times the station signs on or off.


In 1960, San Diego State College (now San Diego State University) applied for a license from the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to operate a non-commercial educational television station to serve San Diego. The station first signed on the air on June 25, 1967 as KEBS-TV. The station was originally a member of National Educational Television (NET) before becoming a member of PBS when it launched on October 6, 1970, at which time the station changed its call letters to KPBS. Despite the calls, which mimic the callsign schemes used by stations owned by ABC, NBC and CBS in New York City and Los Angeles, it is not an owned-and-operated station (nor is similarly-named WPBS in Watertown, New York), as PBS cannot own or operate any of its member stations or regional member networks due to the service's local and non-profit nature. The KPBS callsign reflects the station's affiliation and programming, but not any special status within PBS.

On January 1, 2011, when Los Angeles' longtime PBS station KCET ended its membership, KPBS began to be carried on cable providers in the Bakersfield market, alongside fellow PBS stations KVCR-DT in San Bernardino and KVPT in Fresno. It is also one of three PBS member stations that serve the Palm Springs market, alongside KVCR-DT and KOCE-TV in Huntington Beach (which succeeded KCET as Los Angeles' primary PBS member station). As with most other PBS members, KPBS carries nationally distributed programs from PBS, American Public Television (APT) and other distributors.

KPBS started broadcasting digital television on November 21, 2001.[1] On June 12, 2009, the station turned off its analog signal over UHF channel 15 in accordance with the federal mandate for transitioning television broadcast from analog to digital. The station's digital signal remained on its pre-transition UHF channel 30.[2][3] On March 26, 2019 the digital signal has been moved to UHF channel 19 as a result of spectrum reallocation.[4] Through the use of PSIP, digital television receivers display the station's virtual channel as its former UHF analog channel 15.

Digital channels

The station's digital signal is multiplexed:

Channel Video Aspect PSIP Short Name Programming[5] Data rate[6][7][8]
15.1 720p 16:9 KPBS-HD PBS HD programming 11.9 Mbit/s
15.2 480i 4:3 KPBS-DT Simulcast of the analog channel 3.9 Mbit/s
Early 2006
15.1 1080i 16:9 KPBS-HD PBS HD programming 11.8 Mbit/s
15.2 480i 4:3 KPBS-CR Create 2.3 Mbit/s
15.3 480i 4:3 KPBS-DT Simulcast of the analog channel 2.3 Mbit/s
Late 2006
15.1 1080i 16:9 KPBS-HD Main KPBS programming / PBS N/A
15.2 480i 4:3 KPBS-CR Create N/A
15.1 1080i 16:9 KPBS-HD Main KPBS programming / PBS 15.6 Mbit/s
15.2 480i 4:3 V-Me Spanish-language multicast 2 Mbit/s
Since 2017
15.1 720p 16:9 KPBS-HD Main KPBS programming / PBS 5.5-6 Mbit/s
15.2 KPBS-H2 World / local programming 5-5.5 Mbit/s
15.3 480i Create Create 2.1-2.5 Mbit/s
15.4 Kids PBS Kids 2.1-2.7 Mbit/s

The initial lineup consisted of two multiplexed channels: the main high definition channel in 720p and the standard definition channel in 480i, the latter used for DTV simulcast of the analog channel 15.[1][6] In 2006, an SD sub-channel was added, carrying content from Create.[9] That same year, the main HD channel was switched from 720p to 1080i.[6] Later that year, KPBS dropped the simulcast of analog channel 15 and implemented statistical multiplexing.[10]

In 2007, KPBS replaced Create with V-me, a 24/7 Spanish-language public television channel.[11]

By the middle of the 2010s, KPBS experienced budgetary constraints and erosion of viewership. The locally produced current affairs show Full Focus attracted less than one percent of the potential audience. One of the ways to increase viewership was to increase the number of subchannels as other public TV stations had done.[12]

In January 2017, V-me ended its multicast service for public television, transitioning to commercial cable. KPBS, along with many other PBS affiliates, replaced V-me with the PBS Kids multicast channel.[13] KPBS also has added two more multiplexed channels: KPBS2 and Create. John Decker, director of programming at KPBS in San Diego, explained that multicasts such as PBS Kids, Create, World and locally developed programming "gives public TV an opportunity to increase value and thus loyalty among viewers" as well as "allows KPBS to expand its universe."[14]

Simultaneously with the 2017 lineup change, KPBS switched its HD format from 1080i to 720p and changed aspect ratio of SD channels from 4:3 to 16:9. Image quality degradation, caused by sharing of available bandwidth over four multiplexed channels, was noticed by viewers.[15]


A typical lineup[16] on the main KPBS channel includes children's programming from 6 a.m. to 5 p.m. News programs include Nightly Business Report, BBC World News, KPBS Evening Edition and PBS NewsHour. The evening hours are taken by documentaries, travel videos, episodes of Frontline and drama series.

The KPBS2 channel offers various news and analytical programs, like Amanpour on PBS, NHK Newsline, DW News and BBC World News America, as well as the same news programs as on the main channel but several hours apart. This channel also offers multitude of documentary and travel films. Often, a film shown in the morning is repeated in the afternoon the same day.

The KPBS Create channel is dedicated to home improvement, gardening, cooking and other hobbies and crafts.

The KPBS Kids broadcasts children's programming 24 hours a day, in addition to 11 hours of the children's programming on the main channel.

News programming

KPBS produces a nightly half-hour news program on weeknights titled KPBS Evening Edition, a self-contained television newscast that is an extension of the Midday Edition newscast aired by its radio sister. KPBS' news department is editorially independent from the station's management, San Diego State University and corporate underwriters and donors. The station's investigative reports are conducted in collaboration with the nonprofit newsgathering organization Investigative Newsource, which shares a newsroom with KPBS television and radio at the Campinale Drive studios.

The station collaborates on breaking news coverage and shares news video with the local ABC affiliate KGTV (channel 10). In addition, KPBS broadcasts news programs from affiliates and other networks like PBS NewsHour provided by PBS, NHK Newsline and DW News provided by World, as well as BBC World News America provided by BBC America.

On-air staff

KPBS Evening Edition[17]
  • Dwane Brown - anchor/reporter
  • Peggy Pico - host
  • Beth Accomando - arts and culture reporter
  • Matthew Bowler - education reporter
  • Megan Burks - general assignment reporter; also web editor
  • Angela Carone - arts and culture reporter
  • Joanne Faryon - investigative reporter
  • Kenny Goldberg - health reporter
  • Christopher Maue - videojournalist
  • Nicholas McVicker - videojournalist
  • Brad Racino - multimedia investigative reporter
  • Katie Schoolov - videojournalist
  • Guillermo Sevilla - videojournalist
  • Amita Sharma - investigative reporter
  • Alison St. John - North County bureau chief
  • Claire Trageser - multimedia enterprise reporter
  • David Wagner - science and technology reporter
  • Joe Yerardi - multimedia investigative reporter; also data specialist
Local program hosts[17]
  • Ken Kramer - host of Ken Kramer's About San Diego
  • Tim Mantoani - host of SnapShot
  • Dwane Brown - host of KPBS Spectrum
  • Jorge Meraz - host of Crossing South
  • Mark Sauer - host of KPBS Roundtable; also senior news editor
  • Elsa Sevilla - host of San Diego's Historic Places
  • Nan Sterman - host of A Growing Passion
  • Su-Mei Yu - host of Savor San Diego


  1. ^ a b "KPBS-DT (San Diego) live November 21st". November 21, 2001. Retrieved 2017.
  2. ^ "DTV Tentative Channel Designations for the First and the Second Rounds" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on August 29, 2013. Retrieved 2012.
  3. ^ CDBS Print
  4. ^ "Rescan Day for San Diego County is March 26". February 9, 2019. Retrieved 2019.
  5. ^ RabbitEars TV Query for KPBS
  6. ^ a b c "KPBS 15.1, 15.2 quality?". January 27, 2006. Retrieved 2018.
  7. ^ "TSReader data". September 2, 2013. Archived from the original on January 23, 2017. Retrieved 2017.CS1 maint: BOT: original-url status unknown (link)
  8. ^ "TSReader data". June 18, 2017. Retrieved 2017.
  9. ^ "KPBS "Create"". January 7, 2006. Retrieved 2018.
  10. ^ "Your opinion about KPBS-HD picture quality". March 6, 2006. Retrieved 2018.
  11. ^ "KPBS 15.2 CREATE Carriage". January 11, 2007. Retrieved 2018.
  12. ^ Dotinga, Randy (January 4, 2009). "Station Identification: KPBS Faces 'Time of Tremendous Change'". Voice of San Diego. Retrieved 2017.
  13. ^ Sefton, Dru (December 14, 2016). "Spanish-language multicaster Vme will soon drop public TV service". Retrieved 2017.
  14. ^ Sefton, Dru (January 15, 2017). "Launch of PBS Kids streaming channel reshapes multicast lineups". Retrieved 2017.
  15. ^ "KPBS Sub Channels". December 28, 2016. Retrieved 2017.
  16. ^ "KPBS Schedule at a glance" (PDF).
  17. ^ a b KPBS Staff

External links

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



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