KTAB began broadcasting on October 6, 1979 and transmits from a transmitter/tower facility located on a hilltop southeast of the city along Texas Highway 36 in neighboring Callahan County (about 15 miles from the studio).
Upon signing-on, it took over the CBS affiliation from KTXS-TV, which became a full ABC affiliate. The station was founded by the late William "Bill" Terry and a large contingent of partners, investors, and department heads.
Shamrock Broadcasting, Roy E. Disney's broadcasting company, bought the station from the Terry group in the late 1980s, then sold it to Shooting Star Broadcasting in 1997. Nexstar bought the station from Shooting Star Broadcasting in 1999.
In 2005, Nexstar Broadcasting completed the consolidation of the KTAB operations into the older, larger KRBC building at 4510 South 14th Street in Abilene.