The Boston TV Dial: WBPX(TV)

Who, What, Where

Community: Boston
Analog channel: 68+
Digital channel: 32 (will keep)
PSIP: 68-1: main program
68-2: Pax national feed
68-3: Worship network
68-4: Praise TV
Ownership: Paxson Boston-68 License, Inc.
(Paxson Communications [AMEX: PAX])
Studio: 1120 Soldiers Field Road
Boston, MA 02134
Analog transmitter: Prudential Tower
800 Boylston St.
Boston, MA 02199
Digital transmitter: ATC Newton (FM-128)
1165 Chestnut St.
Newton, MA 02464-1308
Phones:
Office +1 617 787 6868
Network: Pax

Technical Parameters

WBPX transmits on analog channel 68 from the top of the Prudential Tower in Boston's Back Bay neighborhood, with 1350 kW peak visual ERP from 249 meters (817 ft) above average terrain. WBPX's digital TV service on channel 32 operates from the FM-128 tower in Newton, with 300 kW average ERP from 292 meters AAT.

Station History

Channel 68 signed on in January 1979 as WQTV, licensed to Boston Heritage Broadcasting, with studios at 390 Commonwealth Avenue in Boston. WQTV began as a subscription-television station. In 1982, Boston Star Broadcasting, which ran the subscription TV operation, bought WQTV for $600,000. In the fall of 1983, the subscription broadcasts moved to WSMW-TV 27 in Worcester, and WQTV became a new independent station.

1990 saw yet another new era at WQTV, as the First Church of Christ, Scientist bought the station to use as a base for its new “Monitor Channel” cable operation. From lavish new studios on Soldiers Field Road, WQTV's broadcast day was soon filled with locally-produced news and information programming. The church ran into financial problems, and by 1993 the Monitor Channel was out of business and WQTV was up for sale. Boston University stepped in, and in September, 1993 the station was sold for $3.8 million. In October, the calls changed to WABU, reflecting the new ownership.

In 1994, WABU purchased the dormant WCVX-TV 58, licensed to Vineyard Haven (but actually located in Hyannis), and relaunched the station as WZBU. About the same time, they purchased WNHT-TV, channel 21 in Concord, N.H.; its re-launch was delayed until September of 1995 by negotiations for use of the tower with its owner, the Flatley Company. Channel 21 is now on the air as WNBU. In 1996, WABU won the local broadcast rights to the Boston Red Sox from WSBK-TV. In 1998, WABU concluded an agreement with the Boston Celtics to broadcast basketball games.

In the summer of 1999, WABU, WZBU, and WNBU were sold to Paxson Communications, giving Paxson's Pax TV network a full-signal Boston presence for the first time. Its callsign became WBPX, and the previous WBPX dropped Pax TV and became WWDP (owned by Lowell Paxson's son Devon's company, DP Communications).

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This station profile was written by the editors of The Archives @ BostonRadio.org. We have no relationship with the station; please send any comments or questions about their programming directly to the station. Network connectivity courtesy of MIT CSAIL.

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