KBTX-TV, virtual channel 3 (UHF digital channel 50), is a CBS-affiliated television station licensed to Bryan, Texas, United States and serving the Brazos Valley. The station is owned by Gray Television. KBTX-TV's studios are located on East 29th Street in Bryan, and its transmitter is located northwest of Anderson, Texas.
|Bryan–College Station, Texas|
CW8 Aggieland (on DT2)
|Channels||Digital: 50 (UHF)|
(to move to 16 (UHF))
Virtual: 3 (PSIP)
|Affiliations||3.1: CBS (1957-present)|
(Gray Television Licensee, LLC)
|First air date||May 22, 1957|
|Call letters' meaning||Bryan, TeXas|
|Former channel number(s)||Analog:|
3 (VHF, 1957–2009)
|Former affiliations||ABC (secondary, 1957–1985)|
UPN (DT2, until 2006)
|Transmitter power||1,000 kW|
685 kW (CP)
|Height||507.2 m (1,664 ft)|
506.2 m (1,661 ft) (CP)
|Public license information|
(semi-satellite of KWTX-TV,
Waco, Texas) Profile
(semi-satellite of KWTX-TV,
Waco, Texas) CDBS
Although identifying as a separate station in its own right, KBTX-TV is considered a semi-satellite of KWTX-TV (channel 10) in Waco. As such, it simulcasts all network and syndicated programming as provided through its parent station but airs separate commercial inserts, legal identifications, local newscasts and Sunday morning religious programs, and has its own website. KBTX-TV serves the eastern half of the Waco–Temple–Bryan market while KWTX-TV serves the western portion. The two stations are counted as a single unit for ratings purposes. Although KBTX-TV maintains its own facilities, master control and some internal operations are based at KWTX-TV's studios on American Plaza in Waco.
KBTX-TV is also sister to Belton-licensed CW+ affiliate KNCT (channel 46), which shares studios with KWTX-TV. On cable, KBTX-TV is available on Suddenlink channel 5 in the Bryan–College Station area, and is also carried on DirecTV and Dish Network alongside KWTX-TV.
KBTX-TV also offers CW programming on its second digital subchannel. Prior to the September 2006 merger of The WB and UPN, KBTX-TV offered UPN programming on digital. Following the merger, CW Texas was launched as a joint effort between KBTX-TV and KWTX-TV. On August 8, 2012, CW Texas became CW8 Aggieland, which carries programming from The CW, as well as a variety of local sports offerings and many syndicated shows.
KBTX-TV falls under the "KBTX Media" banner, which also includes CW8 Aggieland and KBTX.com.
KBTX was the first television station in the Brazos Valley, first going on the air on May 22, 1957. It has broadcast from the same studio for its entire history, though that building has been added on to multiple times. Originally airing both CBS and ABC programming, KBTX became an exclusive CBS affiliate in 1984.
On October 14, 1983, KBTX flipped the switch on a new transmitter in the Grimes County community of Carlos. The 1,700-foot (518 m) tower nearly doubled the number of homes the station reached.
Perhaps the most noteworthy coverage from KBTX was on November 18, 1999. Early that morning, the Aggie Bonfire stack collapsed, killing 12 and injuring 27. The station provided non-stop coverage of the event, and served as a major source of information locally and nationally in the hours that followed.
KBTX began celebrating its 50th anniversary in May 2007. Many former on-air staff returned for the celebration, including some who guest-anchored newscasts.
In accordance with the original February 2009 date mandated by the federal government, KBTX permanently shut down its analog signal effective January 20, 2009 as it made the transition to digital television. On February 28, 2009, KBTX began broadcasting at full power digital from the enhanced Carlos tower, again expanding its signal dramatically. The station had been broadcasting on low power digital between its analog signal shutdown and the full power activation, in addition to being carried on cable systems and DirecTV.
KBTX and KWTX experimented with a jointly-run noon newscast in early 2009. News stories for both viewing areas were read from KWTX's Waco studios for the first half of the show, with KBTX running live weather and additional local content from its studios for the remainder of the show airing in the Brazos Valley. KWTX aired its own live weather and content in its part of the market during that time. However, in late March 2009, the two stations returned to running separate newscasts, with KBTX citing "an overwhelming request from viewers for the show to be based out of the Twin Cities again."
In 2009, KBTX reached agreements with the nation's two major satellite providers. For years, Dish Network had refused to offer KBTX to the Bryan–College Station area and had simply carried KWTX. However, in 2009, Dish relented. On April 23 of that year, KBTX was made available in the Waco–Temple–Bryan market area. In May 2009, after years of carrying KBTX to the market, DirecTV announced it would be dropping KBTX from its service. In June 2009, an agreement was reached to keep the station available to customers of the satellite provider.
On October 10, 2011, KBTX began broadcasting its newscasts in high definition, making it the first live and local broadcaster in the Brazos Valley to have HD news.
The station's digital signal is multiplexed:
|Channel||Video||Aspect||PSIP short name||Programming|
|3.1||1080i||16:9||KBTX-DT||Main KBTX-TV programming / CBS|
KBTX serves Brazos, Burleson, Grimes, Leon, Madison, Milam, Montgomery, Robertson, Walker and Washington counties, some of which are also in the Houston market, but receive KBTX. Texas A&M University, Sam Houston State University and Blinn College are in its coverage area.
With its digital signal transmitting at the maximum power allowed by law as of early 2009, the KBTX signal also reaches Houston County in the Tyler–Longview market; Trinity, San Jacinto, Austin, Harris and Waller counties in the Houston market; and Lee County in the Austin market. KBTX's weather team monitors those counties and provides forecasts and updates, including during severe weather events. High school sports teams in those counties will also often be covered in KBTX's sports segments.
KBTX previously served as the de facto CBS station in Houston County in the Tyler market until KYTX signed on in 2004.
KBTX is part of a rare American television market, the Waco–Temple–Bryan Designated Market Area. Only a handful of DMAs in the country have multiple stations under the same network affiliation serving viewers (KBTX serving the Bryan/College Station area, KWTX serving the Waco/Temple/Killeen area), even though in this case, both stations are associated with each other.
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In November 2012, KBTX was honored with a Lone Star Emmy for outstanding evening newscast in a smaller market. This was the second Lone Star Emmy win for KBTX. In 2011, the series To Avery with Love won the award for health/science feature.
KBTX earned 19 honors from Texas Associated Press Broadcasters in its 2009-2010 awards, as announced in March 2010. Nine of those 19 were first place awards.
Only two other stations in the state earned more honors in the 2009-2010 awards than KBTX. News 3 also finished third in the entire state in first place wins.
In the previous year's TAPB awards, KBTX won 13 honors (four First Places, three Second Places, six Honorable Mentions), as announced in February 2009. Again, News 3 was among the most honored stations in the state.
Also awarded a Telly was News 3's special, All the Best: 10 Years of the George Bush Presidential Library, which aired the day before the grand reopening of the 41st president's library and museum on the Texas A&M campus. The main exhibit of the museum was closed for months during an $8.5 million renovation that coincided with the facility's anniversary.
- KBTX Media History KBTX.com, KBTX Media History
- KBTX Digital Transition Underway, Mike Wright, KBTX TV, January 20, 2009
- KBTX Now Broadcasting at Full Power Digital, KBTX.com, February 28, 2009
-  KBTX.com, "News 3 at Noon Returns to KBTX Studios in Bryan Monday" (March 20, 2009)
- KBTX on Dish Network Archived March 5, 2009, at the Wayback Machine KBTX.com
- KBTX Responds to DirecTV Notice KBTX.com
-  KBTX.com, "KBTX Broadcasts News in High Definition" (October 10, 2011)
- Sports, KBTX. "Groveton eliminates Lovelady, 3-0". Retrieved August 18, 2018.
- Nielsen Media
-  KBTX Earns 23 TAPB Honors, Most in Texas
-  KBTX Earns 19 Honors for Journalistic Excellence
- TAPB Awards Texas Associated Press Broadcasters 2008-2009 Awards
- Texas AP Broadcasters Awards Rules TAPB 2008-2009 Rules
- KBTX Media History KBTX.com, KBTX Media History
- Aggie Game Day KBTX.com, Aggie Game Day Home Page
- KBTX.com - KBTX-TV official website
- MyCW8.com - The CW Aggieland official website
- Query the FCC's TV station database for KBTX
- BIAfn's Media Web Database -- Information on KBTX-TV