We tested six antennas to find out which one works best. Even though it's been with us for 90 years, over-the-air TV seems like a well-kept secret: You can watch some of the best TV shows, sports and specials for free with a decent signal, without paying a cable company or streaming subscription.
Well, it's almost free. You'll need a TV and a very important piece of equipment: a TV antenna. They've come a long way since the rabbit ears of yesteryear. The downside is that in some places, the TV signal of some channels is spotty or nonexistent due to either your proximity to broadcast towers or obstructions that break up the signal. The best were able to pull in more channels than the others and delivered stronger, more crystal clear TV signals, even better TV signals on "problem" channels. We tested in two different locations: Urban Manhattan and suburban New Jersey.
Here are the six TV antennas we looked at:. We have removed it from our recommendations as a result. The Flatenna 35 has been upgraded with a removable antenna since our original test two years ago. It seems that signal performance has also improved -- it is now the best of our seven models at pulling in channels, beating our previous recommendation, the Antennas Direct ClearStream Eclipse. It's called either the Flatenna 35 or Duo depending on where you buy it from.
Best reception and cheapest price?
How to Get Better Indoor TV Antenna Reception
We have a winner. It has an eerily similar design and also includes a removable coax. Only a higher price prevents it from beating the Flatenna. But maybe you want something in white. Maybe you've tried the other two with so-so results and want to give it another shot. It comes with sticky tabs to attach it to your window, which is handy.
How To Improve Digital Tv Reception In Car? - TV - Free to Air & Streaming - StereoNET
The black plastic feels a little cheap compared to the others, though the model does come with a powered gain amplifier. It was towards the bottom of the pack in terms of signal performance -- but it was the only one to pick up CBS at our Manhattan location see below for details. This Mohu antenna comes with small mounting holes on the top, for thumbtacks, but it lacks sticky applicators and the paper construction tears easily.
AM : A type of frequency used for radio stations. Amplifier Booster : An amplifier is a device used in conjunction with an OTA antenna designed to help make up for signal loss due to long runs of cable or splitters. Bow-Tie: This is a design of antenna typically used for UHF only antennas and is named that because the front of the antenna usually has elements that look like a bow-tie.
Typically these antennas are square, or rectangular in shape, and have a metal mesh screen on the back of them. Channels Not to be mistaken with the channel number on your television, this actually refers to the RF frequency that is used for the Low band VHF frequencies. The RF channel frequency and the actual channel on your television will often be different from one another.
Positioning your antenna for maximum DTV signal strength
Channels Not to be mistaken with the channel number on your television, this actually refers to the RF frequency that is used for the High band VHF frequencies. Channels Not to be mistaken with the channel number on your television, this actually refers to the RF frequency that is used for the UHF frequencies.
This is the same type of cable that satellite and cable companies use. The most popular type used is called RG6 coaxial cable. Deep Fringe: A term used to describe an antenna that has the ability to pull in OTA stations that are very far away. Directional: A term used to describe an antenna that is designed for picking up stations in the direction it is pointed at only. These types of antennas usually do not have much more than a degree range on a compass.
FM: A type of frequency used for radio stations. Multi-directional: A term used to describe an antenna that is designed to be able to pick up channels from the direction it is pointed at, and it also has a range of about degrees on a compass. Omni-directional: a term used to describe an antenna that is designed to be able to pick up stations from any direction at the same time without having to rotate it.
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If your local broadcasts come from different directions a rotator is recommended. Splitter: A device used to split your signal from your antenna off to multiple televisions. If you plan on splitting your antenna to multiple televisions you should also purchase an amplifier to make up for signal loss. In TV antenna terms it represents the RF frequencies used from Unfortunately there are not many retailers locally selling OTA products anymore because the demand for them is not high enough.
Some large stores like Best Buy and Costco sell antennas, but their options are very limited along with their support and knowledge of OTA products. Most OTA products are purchased online from retailers such as us that have many years of experience with the products and can offer full 24 hour tech support and customer service.
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My antenna was working the other day and now its not, what happened? Unfortunately there are over a dozen different things that can cause your OTA antenna to stop working. If it is plugged in make sure the indicator light if it has one is lit up. Next, unplug the power supply, plug it back in and then go to your television and run a full digital channel scan. If that does not work, then you need to walk through your existing set-up to check for damaged parts.
Also check the antenna to make sure it has no physical damage to it, and that it has not been turned towards a different direction. After you troubleshoot, or make any changes always run a full digital channel scan on your television to see if that fixes your issue.
2. Make Sure Your Outdoor TV Antenna is HD
You will need to look in the manual of your television or converter box to find out if it has PSIP capabilities. An OTA antenna allows you to receive free local broadcasts that are being aired from your nearest cities. Besides the antenna you need something to mount it on. You need coaxial cable to go from the antenna to your televisions.
If you are trying to hook your antenna to multiple televisions you should get an amplifier. Finally, if the local broadcasts available to you are in different directions you may need to purchase a rotator. Actually those antennas are still the best design out there. These have great range and are usually designed to be able to pick up all the different frequencies TV stations use for their digital signals.
Even though the signals are digital now, they are still broadcasted in the air using RF Radio Frequencies just like when the signal was analog, which is why the antenna is still able to work properly. Unfortunately professional installers solely dedicated to doing OTA installations are hard to come by these days. You can check your local yellow pages, or search on the internet. Sometimes local TV stores and repair shops do installations on the side also. Most antenna installations though are more of a do it yourself project. This is why you have Solid Signal to help guide you through the process!
The answer to this question depends on how old your television is. For example, if your television is old, it may need a converter box to work with a digital antenna. To be more specific, your television needs what is called an ATSC Tuner card to be able to be used with an antenna without a converter box to pick up digital OTA signals. The answer to this question solely varies on your geographical location. In rare cases, even miles away. OTA television is free in the United States and Canada and can be received with the appropriate TV antenna if you live close enough to the broadcast stations.
Unfortunately there a few different things that may have caused you to lose stations during the digital transition. The main problem though is that the signals are broadcasting from the television stations at a weaker signal then they used to, so the digital signal does not travel as far. Also because of the weak signal broadcasts, you may need to add an amplifier to your existing set-up to improve the signal. Another reason you may be missing channels is because perhaps the broadcast station changed their frequency and your antenna may not have a good design for that frequency.