One of the most common questions that we get at Antennas Direct is "What is the best HDTV antenna for my location?"
We find ourselves again and again recommending our DB line of Antennas and our ClearStream Antennas because these antennas function very well in the majority of locations. Because these antennas are multi-directional, they are ideal for locations where the transmitting towers are not centrally located or when one is trying to capture signals from multiple cities. In addition though, multi-directional antennas tend to work well even if all of the antennas are consolidated in one area as we see in cities like New York, Chicago, and Los Angeles.
While the above listed antennas will work very well is most locations, we do offer several other antennas to meet your needs. We have analyzed the largest metropolitan areas in the U.S. and provided a summary of which Terrestrial Digital antennas work best in which cities.
View Antenna Recommendations for Major Metro Areas for a list of locations and their stations. If you do not live in a major U.S. city, this page will walk you through the process of identifying the type of antenna that will perform the best.
1. Locate the nearest digital television transmitters (DTVs) to your location by going to AntennaPoint.com and filling in your address and other relevant information.
Scroll down to view whether your stations are in UHF or VHF frequency. Obviously, most people do not want to outfit their home with numerous antennas, so some trade offs are typically made. From this chart you can determine the type (UHF or VHF), power, and style antenna that should work best.
2. Check to see if all of the digital channels in your area broadcast on the UHF band.
Look under the columns titled "Channel" and "Band" or refer to our list of digital stations broadcast on the VHF band. If you need to receive low frequency VHF stations (Channels 2-8) you may need a VHF antenna.
3. Determine how far will your antenna be from the transmitters?
Look at the "Dist." column on the far right side of the chart and then choose from the following:
4. Determine whether you need a uni-directional or multi-directional antenna?
In some cities like New York, Chicago, and Los Angeles, all stations are broadcast from one central area, the Empire State and GE Buildings in New York, the Sears Tower or Hancock Building in downtown Chicago, and Mt. Wilson in Los Angeles. In other cities like St. Louis, the transmitters are scattered around the city.
Check the "Heading" and if all of your desired stations are transmitting from the same area or within 20° of each other you can use a uni-directional antenna. If the transmitters are positioned more than 20° apart, it is best to use a multi-directional antenna. It is important to note that most multi-directional antennas will work in place of uni-directional antennas, but you may pick up some multi-path distortion.
By zooming in and out on the map you can get a graphical representation of your compass orientation.
If you need further assistance with choosing the best HDTV antenna for your area, please contact one of our antenna specialists at 1-877-825-5572 between the hours of 9:00 AM and 5:00 PM EST or by using our Contact Form.