Category: Ask the Expert

Q&A with the antenna experts now


Posted in Ask the Expert, Cable be evil, Cut the Cord | Comments

Can I watch the 2016-2017 College Bowl Games with an Antenna?

The next few weeks are pure heaven for college football fans. They’ll be able to watch bowl game after bowl game after bowl game leading up to the playoffs and championship game.

Now, if you don’t have cable, odds are you have an HDTV antenna and are wondering if you can watch the games over the airwaves. Let’s take a look at what networks are broadcasting the games and how you can watch the games that are not being broadcasted locally.

Also note that you can check here for the complete college bowl schedule.

What Games Will Your Antenna Get You?

Admittedly, with an antenna, you won’t be able to watch  a ton of bowl games this season. However, there are definitely a handful of games spread across ABC, CBS, and FOX…all of which you can get with a high-performance antenna.

I’m from Houston, so you better believe I’ll be tuning into the Las Vegas Bowl tomorrow to see the Cougars play. Other games on network stations include:

  • The Foster Farms Bowl featuring Indiana vs Utah airing on FOX on December 28th
  • The Sun Bowl featuring Stanford vs North Carolina airing on CBS on December 30th
  • The Citrus Bowl featuring LSU vs Louisville airing on ABC on December 31st
  • The Outback Bowl featuring Florida vs Iowa airing on ABC on January 2nd

For more info on  choosing the right antenna for your location, you can click here.

You Will Need ESPN for Most of the Remaining Bowl Games

ESPN broadcasts a large number of the remaining bowl games. And while ESPN used to be a cable-only channel, these days you have a few options to get the channel without signing a cable contract.

The first way is with the new streaming service, DirecTV Now. The service just came out a week ago, and basically allows you to stream relatively skinny bundles of channels without signing a contract. You can read all about it in this DirecTV Now overview.

Next comes the least expensive option, Sling TV. For $20 per month, you can get a single stream of ESPN (and a bunch of other channels) on virtually any device. There’s a free 7-day trial available at

Another option for streaming ESPN is PlayStation Vue. I won’t go into too much detail because it’s pretty similar to both Sling and DirecTV Now. The primary difference is that it has a completely functioning cloud DVR. You can get the details of the service in this review.

There are plenty of options to get your fill of bowl games here in the next few weeks. Enjoy and may your favorite team win!

Chris Brantner is the founder of, a resource for people who want to cut the cord and still get the TV they crave. Follow him on Twitter @CutCableToday and find him on Facebook here


Posted in Ask the Expert, Cable be evil, Cut the Cord, Industry Update | Comments

The ClearStream Eclipse Makes the Slate Holiday Gift Guide

The holidays are upon us, but it’s not too late to pick up that perfect gift! Slate has your back and did all the hard work for you. The staff and writers at Slate all pulled together their best gift pick for the year and you can flip through all 55 items HERE. But of course, John Swansburg had the best pick by choosing our ClearStream Eclipse Indoor HDTV Antenna!

“Is there a greater gift than freedom from the tyranny of the cable monopolies?” John, John, John. You are our kind of fella. With the Eclipse you will save thousands of dollars a month, receive a remarkably clear picture and pick up the best signal with no tools required! The Eclipse features Sure Grip that will “grip” to any smooth surface, no screws, no tape, and no assembly. We all know the struggles of holiday gifts that feature “some assembly necessary”.  Not with the Eclipse!

“No more cable bill, no more cable company, so much joy.” Who wouldn’t want that for the holidays?

Thanks to John Swansburg and to Slate for including our ClearStream Eclipse in your Holiday Gift Guide! We have to agree that it would make the perfect gift. And it’s not too late, you can pick up the Eclipse online or at your local Best Buy, just in time to wrap it up and place it under the tree.


Posted in Ask the Expert, Cable be evil, Cut the Cord | Comments

Top Ways to Watch Basketball without Cable

Basketball season is one of the best times of the year in my opinion. With it, come great games to watch every night, highlight reel plays, buzzer beaters, and so much more. There’s truly nothing like watching a close basketball game as it comes down to the final minutes. Every single play can change the outcome of the game.

Previously, the biggest reason not to cut the cord was the inability to watch their favorite sports like basketball, hockey, football, or baseball without having cable. But it’s getting easier. Some sports organizations, such as the NFL, make most of their games available on local TV stations.

Others, like the NBA, make it a bit more difficult. With basketball season in full force, let’s take a look at the top ways to watch basketball without cable.

Sling TV: A subscription streaming service offered by Dish Network as a full cable alternative. The service starts at either $20 or $25 per month and gets you more than 30 cable channels to live stream. There are multiple channels you can expect to find on at least one of the starting packages to watch basketball games. These include ESPN, ESPN2, TBS, TNT, FS1, NBCSN, FOX Sports regional networks. Plus, you can add-in channels like the SEC Network or Pac 12 Network if you’re favorite teams happen to be in these conferences.

PlayStation Vue: This service from Sony is set up incredibly similar to Sling TV. It costs $29.99 per month to start and lets you stream live cable channels, over 50 at the lowest subscription level. All of the above channels on Sling TV can be found on PlayStation Vue and there are even premium packages that will include more channels with a focus on delivering local sports networks. This will be great for watching either NBA or college basketball games.

NBA League Pass: If you live away from the city your favorite team plays in, then all you need in life is NBA League Pass. You can watch every single game in the NBA every night through league pass. The one downside, and it’s a big one, is that any channel broadcast in your local market will be blacked out.  This means you can’t watch any of your team’s games with NBA League Pass. The service costs $120 per year to watch your favorite team or $199 per year to watch the entire league’s games.

CBS All Access: This one will be great for NCAA basketball fans. CBS broadcasts a ton of games each year and also owns a bunch of the March Madness broadcast rights. Nearly every weekend, CBS broadcasts a feature game and CBS All Access will likely let you watch these games live. The streaming portion is still being rolled out throughout the U.S., but it is in the majority of markets at the moment. CBS All Access only costs $5.99 per month to start or you can pay $9.99 per month and watch without commercials. For more info on the service, check out this CBS All Access review.

Antenna: Another way to watch either NBA or college basketball games is through a digital antenna. The antenna lets you watch channels like NBC, CBS, ABC, and FOX on your TV. It picks up over-the-air broadcasts from these networks and streams it right onto your TV in HD. The NBA will have featured games on ABC nearly every week. And, as we mentioned above CBS will be a great place for watching college basketball games. The best aspect of the antenna is it’s free to watch and the only cost is the initial investment of purchasing the antenna.

As you can tell, there’s tons of options for watching either NBA or college basketball without cable. Remember, the best setup might be combining a couple of your choices together instead of relying on just one of them. The best part about cutting cable is you actually have options, while saving a bunch of money!

Chris Brantner is the founder of, a resource for people who want to cut the cord and still get the TV they crave. Follow him on Twitter @CutCableToday and find him on Facebook here


Posted in Ask the Expert, Cable be evil, Cut the Cord | Comments

CNET Names the ClearStream Eclipse the BEST Indoor TV Antenna

We’ve always been big fans of CNET. If you’re in the market for a new tech or consumer electronic and need some advice, we’re certain you’ll be able to find an honest and true review from CNET. CNET reached out to us in July saying that they wanted to pull together a selection of indoor antennas to test out and see how they performed in different locations. Sometimes it can be a little nerve wrecking to put your product out there with others and hear the feedback; it’s like putting your child out on the line and being told what people think.

They went through some intense and very in-depth testing and just this morning posted the results of their testing. We knew we had the best HDTV antenna and felt confident it would outperform the competitors.

And guess what? It did.

Ty Pendlebury at CNET tested out the RCA Indoor HDTV antenna, Channel Master Flatenna, Mohu ReLeaf, RCA SLVR, Channel Master Smartenna, and our ClearStream Eclipse.

They chose the Eclipse as the Best Overall Indoor Antenna!
*cue cheering from the Antennas Direct office and cord cutting world*

Ty loved the design of the Eclipse. He enjoyed that it was reversible and could blend in to your home decor with its unique design. He also loved that it came with Sure Grip, meaning he didn’t have to tape the antenna to the window or wall, or try and find a way to adhere it to a surface. Masking tape is not very effective at holding up antennas for any length of time, but you’ll find the Eclipse clinging to your window or wall relentlessly.

Ty found that he received  75 channels in Manhattan and 47 channels in Long Island  with the strongest reception received with the Eclipse. He was able to pull channels from the city as well as improved the strength of the channels it received in the suburbs.

This was a big win for us over at Antennas Direct and we were thrilled with the results! Thanks to Ty and CNET for taking the time to test out indoor antennas and choosing our Eclipse the best in all the land. We think you’re pretty awesome.



Posted in Ask the Expert, Cable be evil, Cut the Cord | Comments

Dear Santa, Please Bring Me Christmas…

Our dear friend Sam sent us his letter for Santa. It seems like things are tough this year, and he’ll have to choose between having gifts or his parents paying for cable. Now that doesn’t seem fair, right?

Dear Santa,

 I’ve been a very good boy this year.  I know you usually take care of a present or two for me, and my parents fork over the rest.  This year they say I won’t be getting presents because our cable bill is so expensive.

I’m sure you know how sad this makes me.  I’ve been trying to think of a way to help my mom and dad. This is why I am writing to you. 

The other day I went over to my friend Susie’s house. Her mom bought them this crazy thing called an ANTENNA! She can watch cartoons, TV shows and movies, all for free.

She’ll probably be getting lots of Christmas presents this year. I’ll be lucky to get a piece of rope, or maybe a nice cardboard box.

Do I really have to choose between watching TV and getting Christmas presents? I thought this was America.

So Santa, make my Christmas great this year, and please bring my family a TV Antenna, so they can get back to spending their money on me, and not the (bleep-bleep) cable company.

Your friend,


If you’re in the same boat as Sam’s parents, we can help. Cut the cord, save over $100 a month by installing an antenna and be able to give your kids their dream Christmas. At Antennas Direct, we’re all about making dreams come true.


Posted in Ask the Expert, Cut the Cord | Comments

The Gadgeteer Reviews the Newly Reengineered ClearStream Eclipse


As many of you know, several months ago we released our ClearStream Eclipse Sure Grip HDTV Antenna with some exciting updates, including an enhanced 50 mile range, reversible black and white double-sided design and  advanced performance to receive more channels. We’ve been hearing some great feedback, and were excited to see a review this morning from the Gadgeteer!

When we first launched the ClearStream Eclipse TV Antenna over two years ago, the Gadgeteer tried one out and they were excited with their results! They liked the design of the Eclipse, the ease of installation and were able to receive many local channels they weren’t able to pull in before with a competitor’s model. However, we took our original Eclipse and turned it up a notch. We decided to send the Gadgeteer one of our reengineered Eclipses to see how well it performed in comparison to the original, over 2 years ago.



The original Eclipse had a 35 mile range. It worked well in their living room, but it struggled to get some of the local channels.

The reengineered ClearStream Eclipse has a 50+ mile range and a slightly new edge to its design, including a reversible white and black double-sided design. After some experimenting to find the best location, Kathleen was able to pick up all of her local stations. In the past they’ve had trouble tuning into ABC and NBC, so it was exciting to be able to receive those stations with the reengineered Eclipse.

Thanks to Kathleen Chapman and the Gadgeteer for taking the time to review our ClearStream Eclipse! We listen to feedback from our clients, fans and industry leaders to help us continue to improve performance for consumers.


Posted in Ask the Expert, Cable be evil, Cut the Cord | Comments

Good4Utah is Good for Antennas Direct


We were thrilled to see some exciting cord cutting stats to get our weekend started. The CTA projects about 7.6 million antennas will be sold in 2016 and that the industry will grow by 9.3% this year. We can vouch for this growth as we watch our sales increase each month. We’ve had record sales and phone calls to our customer service as the idea of cutting the cord continues to grow. It’s articles and news segments like this one from Good4Utah that helps spread awareness of cutting the cord.

The TV antenna might be decades old, but they are better than ever. With new technology and interest in the community and industry, TV antennas are more powerful, easier to install and becoming the new norm.


James Duncan of South Jordan, Utah recently cut the cord from DISH and had one of our DB2 antennas installed on his roof. By installing the antenna, he is saving $100 a month and is able to get 53 channels!

“And the quality of the antenna is much better than DISH was,” said Duncan. That’s because the signal is not compressed like it is with cable or DISH, you get the clearest picture quality possible.

Thanks to Good4Utah for sharing Mr. Duncan’s story and helping to spread awareness of cord cutting. YOU have other options, don’t be tied down by your cable or satellite company!


Posted in Ask the Expert, Cut the Cord | Comments

Antennas Direct 2016 Holiday Gift Guide

Last year, shoppers around the country said they were planning to spend an average of $882 for holiday gifts. For some folks, that’s just a drop in the bucket. For the majority of us, that’s a LARGE sum of money. Now let’s do a little math (don’t worry, you won’t be tested).

The average cable in 2016 is $103.10.

There are 12 months in the year.

$103.10 X 12 = $1,237.20

The average American spends $1,237.20 a year on cable. That is outrageous! Think about all of the things you could do with that money!

Here’s an idea. Cut the cord this holiday season and start saving over $1,000 a year. It’s not only a gift to yourself, but also to your family! Think about all the things your family could use that money on (and all of the holiday gifts you could buy.

Now, with all that money saved, here is our 2016 Gift Guide with our EXCELLENT gift suggestions.

Parrot Swing Drone– $139.99
Yes, drones are still in and hot (but you know, not like setting on fire). The Parrot Swing Drone is a minidrone that is more affordable and impressive than the more expensive models. We would say this is the perfect gift for the kids in your life but let’s be honest, this is the perfect gift for ANYONE.


GoPro HERO5– $399.99
If you’re shopping for the on-the-go, adventure type, (or someone who is prone to hilariously embarrassing activities) a GoPro is the perfect holiday gift. You’ll get professional quality video with a waterproof, wind, and noise reducing camera.

XYZ Printing da Vinci Mini– $289
This is a 3D printer. How cool is that?! With this little mini 3D printer, you  can print prototypes for businesses and replace parts and pieces for items around the home. Great for the creative, or um, nerdy types.

GrillBot– $129.95
Grilling is great. BBQ is tasty. Cleaning the grill? Yeah, no one wants to do that. How about a robot that can clean your grill AND is dishwasher safe? We’re down. Invite us to your BBQ and we’ll clean the grill.


ClearStream Eclipse Sure Grip Indoor HDTV Antenna– $39.99, $59.99 (amplified)
Well duh. Of course we’re going to include our award winning indoor TV antenna to the list. If you have any friends or family members ready to cut the cord, this is the perfect gift. The Sure Grip takes the most advanced technology and makes it even better. Grips to any smooth surface, suchs as a wall or window. Great for dorm rooms, RV’s and over-the-road vehicles. It features a black and white double-sided design and is paintable, so you can match your wall, furniture, or accent color for a custom fit. All you have to do is Grip it, Plug it, Scan it and Watch it.

Amazon Echo Dot– $49.99
If you know someone who is into smart home technology, this is the perfect gift. It’s hands-free, voice-controlled that uses Alexa to play music, control smart home devices, read the news, answer questions and be your companion.

Nintendo NES Classic Edition– $60
For the gaming nerd in your life, this classic console will help you relive the 80s gaming glory. It comes with 30 games built in!


Roku Premiere+ – $99.99
If you’re a cord cutter, you of course know of Roku and most likely own one (we’re big fans). But they recently released the Premiere+ which gives you 4K resolution and high dynamic range video, plus a Wi-Fi remote with headphones. When your kids are asleep and  you want to watch your adult content shows (ahem, American Horror Story, Walking Dead, Orange is the New Black…you get the drift), you’ll be in love with the headphones.

Skullcandy Grind Wireless Headphones– $89.99
For the gamer or music lover, these headphones are some of the best Bluetooth headphones under $100. They won’t break the bank, but they WILL block out noise.


3Doodler Start Essentials Pen Set– $50
For any creative and artsy kids in your life, this 3D-printing pen works like a glue gun to draw plastic creations. It’s fun, interactive and doesn’t break the bank.

Fruit Keg Tapping Kit– $19.99
Because with all of that money  you’ll save cutting the cord, you can throw some kick ass parties. So who doesn’t need a fruit keg tapping kit?

Creative Cursing Generator– $9.21
Now this is a great gift for a coworker or friend who would love a little help stringing together the perfect curse phrase to accurately express their feelings. The printer is out of paper right before a big presentation? Let the creative cursing generator help you express that frustration.


Boyfriend Pillow– DIY!
Not only is this a great gift for someone who is, well, lonely or looking to cuddle, but it can also be made on the cheap. Nothing says, “I care about you and don’t want you to be alone,” like a boyfriend pillow.

And there ya go. Just a few gift options for everyone in your life, from kids, spouses, friends and office mates. And with all that money you’ll save cutting the cord, you could treat yo’ self to a nice little gift or 2.


Posted in Antenna Update, Ask the Expert, Cut the Cord | Comments

Denver and Pittsburgh Share Their Love of Antennas Direct


The turkey leftovers are almost gone, the pumpkin pie is a distant memory and the Thanksgiving Day Parade balloons are deflated and packed away. Now we are on to the holidays! When we got back to the office today after a food filled, relaxing long weekend, we were thrilled to see that two publications shared their love for Antennas Direct! The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette shared their 2016 holiday gift guide and The Denver Post discussed the growth of cutting the cord and installing TV antennas.

When we saw that our ClearStream Eclipse made the front page of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette Business section for their holiday gift guide, we may have let out a little girl giggle. We think that the Eclipse HDTV Antenna is the perfect holiday gift, so it’s exciting to see others have the same idea! We have the best plan that will save you time and money this holiday season. Throw away your Christmas shopping list and stock up on TV antennas for everyone in your life! You’ll be done shopping in no time at all, save yourself money, and help your loved ones save money. You’re welcome.


The Denver Post wrote a great article discussing the growth of cutting the cord and people returning to TV antennas. Those people, they’re OUR favorite. Anthony Leyba owns Digital Concepts in Denver and he climbs on top of customer’s roofs about 10 times a month to install new TV antennas. He recommends our ClearStream 4 antenna, he says that it’s the best signal he’s found in an antenna and he recommends it for his clients. Denver-area residents can get up to 50 channels with an antenna! Why pay $120 for cable and only watch 20 channels when you could get 50 channels for free?

Thanks to the Denver Post and Pittsburgh Post-Gazette for helping spread awareness of cutting the cord and promoting over-the-air television with a TV antenna! We love you. A lot.


Posted in Ask the Expert, Cut the Cord | Comments

The Ultimate Cord Cutters Guide to Holiday Movies and TV Shows


This is the time of year where people (ourselves included) want to bundle up in front of the fireplace with family and watch TV and movies. It’s the simple pleasures that bring us the most joy, and being a cord cutter doesn’t have to mean that you miss out. In fact, as a cord cutter, you are winning by pocketing more money each month that can be used on: Christmas candy, holiday gifts, holiday vacations and early retirement.

If you’re a holiday TV lover, here is our cord cutters guide to watching the best Fall and Winter TV shows, movies and holiday specials.



Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade- November 24th at 9:00am on NBC
This is a must watch annual tradition, and this is the 90th year for the parade! Don’t miss a moment, the parade begins at 9AM ET on November 24th, broadcast live on NBC.

Charlie Brown Thanksgiving- November 24th at 8:00pm on ABC
A classic family favorite will air on, you guessed it, Thanksgiving evening at 8:00pm on ABC. Join Charlie, Snoopy, Linus and the entire gang on a Thanksgiving day adventure.

Santa Claus is Coming to Town- November 25th at 8:00pm on ABC
I mean, come on. This is a must for the holiday season. Thanksgiving is a past memory (other than the leftover turkey in the fridge), and now you can sit back and watch the Christmas classics.

Christmas in Rockefeller Center- November 30th at 8:00pm on NBC
You’ll feel all of the Christmas-time warm fuzzies watching the lighting of the giant Christmas tree in New York. For many folks, this is the OFFICIAL start of Christmas.


A Charlie Brown Christmas- December 1st at 8:00pm on ABC
Yes, we included two Charlie Brown movies on our list. Because we can. And because they are so darn good. Who doesn’t enjoy a holiday Charlie Brown movie?! Will there be a heartwarming holiday message wrapped up in a cute, fun cartoon? Absolutely!

It’s a Wonderful Life- December 10 at 8:00pm on NBC
It’ll make you cry, smile, feel nostalgic and your heart will be warmed. This is a holiday classic you most certainly do not want to miss and is a movie the whole family will enjoy.

iHeart Radio Jingle Ball 2016- December 15th at 8:00pm on the CW
If you’re a music AND Christmas lover, the iHeart Radio Jingle Ball is right up your alley. Enjoy music from your favorite acts including Charlie Puth, Daya, Diplo, Fifth Harmony, Bruno Mars, Justin Bieber, Britney Spears, Ariana Grande, The Chainsmokers and many, many more.



Do we need to say more? We’ve waited 9 long years. We’ve rewatched seasons 1-7 close to four dozen times. We’ve quoted Lorelai daily while drinking our morning coffee. And we may or may not own at least one article of Gilmore Girls merchandise. And now, finally, we will be able to enjoy Gilmore Girls again with “A Year in the Life”, a Netflix original coming out on November 25th. Forget Black Friday shopping, our butts will be glued to the couch, catching up with our favorite girls. We are not ashamed.

Miracle on 34th Street
The 1994 remake of the classic Christmas tale is now streaming on Netflix!

Christmas with the Kranks
If you’re looking for a fun, and different holiday movie, of course Tim Allen and Jamie Lee Curtis make this flick a win.


White Christmas
This is a winner for us. It’s the perfect movie to watch with the entire family: there’s singing, war, Christmas, sisters and snow. What more could you ask for?!

Love Actually
This is a wonderful movie no matter the time of year, but you’ll quickly get into the holiday spirit once you stream this movie.



Fireplace for Your Home
This might sound stupid, but seriously, you will enjoy these holiday lights and fireplace scenes for the perfect background entertainment while wrapping presents, decorating the house or spending time with family and friends. We dare you to not be mesmerized by the fire.

Holiday TV Show Classics
If you’re someone who remembers the holiday specials from your favorite TV shows, Hulu has the hookup! From a Very Brady Christmas, to Parks and Recreation to Mork and Mindy, you’ll find all your favorite holiday episodes streaming on Hulu.



Freeform’s 25 Days of Christmas.
If you have Sling, this is a must for the holidays. A different holiday classic every day? Yes please. A few of our favorites include Elf (12/4)The Polar Express (12/12), National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (12/16) and Disney’s A Christmas Carol (12/23). If you need us, we will be glued to the TV with a steaming mug of cocoa quoting Elf word for word.


So there ya have it. Our Ultimate Cord Cutters Guide to watching the best holiday movies and shows.

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