KOB, virtual channel 4 (digital channel 26), is an NBC-affiliate television station based in Albuquerque, New Mexico, owned by Hubbard Broadcasting. Its transmitter is located on Sandia Crest, east of Albuquerque. Syndicated programming on KOB includes: Inside Edition,The Insider, Judge Judy, and Who Wants to Be a Millionaire.
|Albuquerque, New Mexico|
|Branding||KOB 4 (general)
KOB Eyewitness News 4(newscasts)
|Slogan||All Local, All the time.|
|Channels||Digital: 26 (UHF)|
4.2 This TV
|First air date||November 29, 1948|
|Call letters' meaning||sounds like "cob"|
|Former callsigns||KOB-TV (1948-2009)|
|Former channel number(s)||Analog:
4 (VHF, 1948-2009)
|Former affiliations||All secondary:|
|Transmitter power||270 kW|
Stanley E. Hubbard, founder of Hubbard Broadcasting, bought KOB-AM-FM-TV from Time Life in 1957. KOB's radio cousins were sold off in 1986 and are now known as KKOB-AM-FM, owned by Citadel Broadcasting; many people still confuse the television and radio stations today. Later, in May 1952, the KOB stations were purchased by Time Life (now Time Inc.) and former Federal Communications Commission (FCC) chairman Wayne Coy. It was Time Life’s first television asset. In 1953, two new TV stations signed on within a week—KGGM-TV (channel 13, now KRQE) signed on and took CBS, followed by KOAT which took ABC; DuMont shut down in 1956.KOB-TV started operations on November 29, 1948, after Albuquerque Journal owner and publisher Tom Pepperday won a television license on his second try. Pepperday, who also owned KOB radio (AM 770 and FM 93.3), had previously applied for one in 1943. It is the oldest television station in New Mexico, as well as the second-oldest television station between the Mississippi River and the West Coast (KDYL-TV in Salt Lake City, now KTVX, also on channel 4, had signed on a month earlier). Initially KOB-TV ran programming from all four networks—NBC,ABC, CBS and DuMont Television Network. However, it has always been a primary NBC affiliate owing to its radio sister's long affiliation with NBC radio.
In 2005, KOB-TV entered into a news partnership with KKOB-AM.
Despite the KOB radio stations having changed their call letters, KOB-TV didn't drop the "-TV" suffix until June 13, 2009, when the FCC allowed a limited opportunity for stations to change their suffixes (adding "-TV" or "-DT") or drop them in the wake of the digital transition.
In September 2006, KOB-TV began broadcasting NBC WeatherPlus on digital subchannel 4.2, at first inserting its Doppler weather radar during time reserved for local segments. In December 2008, WeatherPlus was replaced with KOB's own locally programmed weather station. Weekly E/I programming required of broadcast television stations came from NASA TVon the weekends. On February 7, 2011 the channel began carrying programming from MGM studios This TV network which airs back-to-back movies and some old TV shows.
Three stations rebroadcast KOB's signal and insert local content for other parts of the media market:
|Station||City of license||Channels||First air date||Former callsigns||ERP
|Facility ID||Transmitter Coordinates|
|October 20, 1972||KIVA-TV (1972–1983)||316 kW
|June 24, 1953||KSWS-TV (1953–1985)||316 kW
|KOBG-TV||Silver City||6 (VHF)
|2000||6 kW||502 m||85114||32°51′49″N 108°14′29.6″W|
KOBF went on air in 1972 as KIVA-TV. It operated at about half of the class maximum (158 of 316 kW) from an antenna 410 feet (125 m) above average terrain. The station had always been an NBC affiliate.
Up until March 2007, KOBF had broadcast a fifteen minute Four Corners news, weather and sports segment, "Eyewitness News 12," during KOB news broadcasts every weekday at 6 pm & 10 pm. KOBF also produced four 5-minute news cut-ins every weekday morning during the Today show from 7 am-9 am with local news and weather information. KOBF also produced a local high school sports program called "Four Corners Gameday" every Friday night during the academic school year. Communities throughout the Four Corners region came to rely and depend on KOBF for local news, weather and sports information complimenting the statewide coverage from KOB in Albuquerque.
On March 1, 2007, most of the extra news and all of the extra sports content was ended for viewers of KOBF. KOB management fired three of the four members of the news department, in addition to two technical directors and the news director, Scott Michlin, who had been with KOBF for seventeen years. A similar practice of providing local newscasts had been done at KOBR, but to a much smaller extent. Those local broadcasts also ceased on March 1, 2007. KOBF and KOBR now serve as bureaus feeding a story or two each day for the statewide newscasts on KOB from Albuquerque. Each are staffed by one news reporter/photographer.
KOB, KOBF and KOBR's broadcasts will be digital-only, effective June 12, 2009.
KOBG had a permit to construct a digital station on channel 8, but these facilities were never built. As KOBG-TV 6 Silver City must end analog TV signals on June 12, KOB has applied for a low power TV (LPTV) transmitter license. Without this transmitter, KOB's over-the-air NBC broadcasts will cease in Silver City.
KOBR has been a KOB satellite since 1983, after previously operating as a free-standing local station with a primary NBC affiliation and later as a satellite of NBC affiliate KCBD-TV inLubbock, Texas. A separate article about KOBR-TV includes more extensive details about the history of the Roswell station.
The last letter of the satellite station callsigns stands for the city or county where the station is located. KOBG is in Grant County.
In addition to KOB and its three satellite stations, there are dozens of low-powered repeaters that carry KOB's programming throughout New Mexico, as well as a handful in Colorado and Arizona. 
KOB's newscasts identify themselves as Eyewitness News 4. Ordinarily, KOB airs five and a half hours of local news each weekday, three hours each Saturday, and an hour each Sunday. During the school year, KOB broadcasts a weekly 10-minute sportscast, "New Mexico Gameday," dedicated to high school sports. Also, during the fall of 2006, KOB broadcasts the Lobo Coaches Show, a 30-minute sportscast dedicated to the University of New Mexico football team.
KOB has a history of strong news talent. The station's hiring of Dick Knipfing in 1980 from KOAT-TV, created the Albuquerque's first, big-dollar anchor, and stood out in the industry as the "anchorman wars" moved to smaller markets. Knipfing's 1980 salary was approximately $90,000. Despite his hiring, the station was never able to overtake KOAT in the news ratings, largely due to the staying power of anchor Johnny Morris and a folksy weatherman Howard Morgan. Knipfing, now with KRQE-TV, his third time around, remains a fixture in the local TV news scene.
KOB-TV's anchor team featured Carla Aragon, who used to co-host PM Magazine with Gary Doll for KOB-TV in the early 1980s, before she was hired away by KNBC-TV in Los Angeles. She returned to KOB-TV in 1994 replacing Jane Metzler, and was teamed with anchor Tom Joles until she retired in December 2007. Joles followed Knipfing and Nathan Roberts in the anchor chair. The weather staff of Meteorologist Robin Marshment (formerly of KRQE-TV) and Chief Meteorologist Larry Rice, from KIRO-TV in Seattle in 1995, were the most experienced forecast team on New Mexico TV for years. Marshment retired from broadcasting in 2007. Rice was the only forecaster in NM to win an Emmy. Rice went back to the Seattle area in 2008. Morning show weatherman Steve Stucker has been with KOB non-stop since May 1990 for the longest tenure of any present New Mexico forecaster.
Also in the 1980s, long time weekend anchor Greg Gurule, was replaced by Joe Vigil who currently holds the longest tenure for weekend anchor in New Mexico. The Cerro Grande Firethat decimated Los Alamos in May 2000 marked a turning point as KOB became the #1 news station in New Mexico and held that position until NBC prime time programming began to slide. The Albuquerque market continues to have no clear favorite station according to media metrics. Whichever station has the larger prime time audience at 9:45 p.m. typically wins at 10 p.m. Nicole Brady was named co-anchor of the nightly newscasts with Joles in December 2007 following the retirement of Carla Aragon. Brady's great-great-great grandfather was Sheriff William J. Brady, shot by Billy the Kid during the Lincoln County War in 1878.
KOB produced an hour-long nightly newscast for Albuquerque's Fox affiliate, KASA, from September 2000 through September 14, 2006 called "Fox 2 News at Nine". The next day, CBS affiliate KRQE took over production of that newscast as that station's parent company, LIN TV, began taking over KASA's operations as it purchased the station.
KOB began producing and broadcasting its newscasts in 16:9 widescreen standard definition on September 26, 2010, and debuted new on-air graphics and a new station logo (the logo used for its newscasts is very similar to that used by WABC-TV in New York City in its newscasts and Swedish television channel TV4 for its programming) on that date as well; the station plans to broadcast its local newscasts in high definition by 2011. Presently, KOB's studio cameras shoot in HD, but the video is downconverted to widescreen standard definition in the control room due to editing limitations.
- New Mexico Newsreel (1950s)
- The Big News (1960s)
- Channel 4 News (19??-1970)
- TV-4 Eyewitness News:Morning Scene/Noon Scene/Early Scene/Evening Scene/NightScene (1970–1984)
- Eyewitness News Network:Morning Edition/Noon Edition/Early Edition/Evening Edition/Late Edition (1984–1989)
- News 4 New Mexico/News 4 (1989–1994)
- Channel 4 Eyewitness News (1994–1996)
- (KOB) Eyewitness News 4 (1996–present)
- KOB 1975 News Theme by unknown composer (1975–1977)
- Tap Root Manuscript: The African Suite by Neil Diamond (1977–1981)
- NewsCenter Theme by Michael Randall Music (1981–1983)
- Be There - NBC Affiliate Package by Rob Mounsey (1983–1984)
- KOB Eyewitness News Network Theme by unknown composer (1984-19??)
- News 88 by Tuesday Productions (19??-1989)
- KOB 1993 News Theme by unknown composer (1989-1994)
- Palmer News Package by Shelly Palmer Company (1994–1996)
- Third Coast by Stephen Arnold Music (1996–2003)
- News Matrix by Stephen Arnold Music (2003–present)
- Evolution by Stephen Arnold Music (2005–present)
Current on-air staffEdit
Anchors (In alphabetical order)
- Antoinette Antonio - Weekdays "Eyewitness News 4 Today" and noon
- Nicole Brady - Weeknights at 5, 6, and 10 p.m.
- Tom Joles - Weeknights at 5, 6, 6:30 and 10 p.m.
- Irene Estrada - "Good Day New Mexico" host
- Joe Vigil - Saturdays at 6, Sundays at 5 and weekends at 10 p.m.; also weeknight reporter
Pinpoint 4 Weather (In order of rank)
- Jason Stiff (AMS Certified Broadcast Meteorologist Seal of Approval) - chief meteorologist; weeknights at 5, 6, 6:30 and 10 p.m.
- Steve Stucker - weather and news anchor; weekday mornings Eyewitness News 4 Today and noon
- Shar Spalding (AMS Seal of Approval; NWA member) - meteorologist; Saturday mornings, Saturdays at 6, Sundays at 5 and weekends at 10 p.m., also fill-in
Sports team (In order of rank)
- J.P. Murrieta - sports director; weekdays at noon, and weeknights at 5, 6 and 10 p.m.
- Lee Faria - sports anchor; Saturdays at 6, Sundays at 5 and weekends at 10 p.m.
Reporters (In alphabetical order)
- Stuart Dyson - political reporter
- Eddie Garcia - general assignment reporter
- Liz Lastra - Farmington Bureau chief
- Gadi Schwartz - Santa Fe Bureau chief
- Many "Today in History" websites () say KOB-TV ceased transmission on October 28, 1986 - the same day the KOB radio stations changed callsigns to KKOB. KOB did not stop broadcasting on that date.
- Reporters Jeremy Jojola and Jessica Kartalija (now with WJZ-TV in Baltimore) were both in the 2007 movie Transformers which was filmed partly in New Mexico.
- Reporter Austin Reed was seen in Sony Pictures 2007 Untraceable film starring Diane Lane. He played a News Reporter.
- Anchor Marla Tellez (now at KNTV) and reporter Jeff Mahr appear in the opening scenes of the third season premiere of the television program Breaking Bad. They appear as themselves reporting on a fictional mid-air collision of two commercial airliners over Albuquerque. Archived KOB footage of an apartment building burning in Downtown Albuquerque is shown to appear as damage from the collision.
- KOB website
- KOBF website
- KOBG website
- Query the FCC's TV station database for KOB
- Query the FCC's TV station database for KOBF
- Query the FCC's TV station database for KOBG
- BIAfn's Media Web Database -- Information on KOB-TV
- BIAfn's Media Web Database -- Information on KOBF-TV
- BIAfn's Media Web Database -- Information on KOBG-TV